Luka Doncic of the Dallas Mavericks scores 30 points and plays 34 mins in his first game after 13 days

SALT LAKE CITY Dallas Mavericksstar Luka DoncicI couldn't help but smile despite all the hardships. Utah Jazz‘s series-tying 100-99 winSaturday's Game 4.

Doncic says playoff basketball is his favorite thing, especially after a left calf strain forced him out of the Western Conference first round series.

Doncic, who had a 30-point, 10-rebound and four-assist game, said, “I'm just happy to be back.” “I had a lot of fun playing basketball out there. What could be more exciting than the playoffs? The playoffs can be thrilling, so I'm just happy to be back.”

Doncic played for 34 minutes as Jason Kidd altered his usual substitution pattern to allow his star a break in the middle of the first and third quarters. Doncic finished strong with a floater that gave the Mavericks the lead at 1:13 and a step back 3-pointer over the three-time Defensive Players of the Year. Rudy GobertThat felt like a dagger and gave Dallas a four point lead with 39.6 seconds remaining.

The Jazz managed to get by the All-Star guard with a three point play Donovan MitchellMitchell-to-Gobert gives the go-ahead and throws around two missed free throws from Dallas center Dwight Powell.

After Gobert's dunk was completed, eleven seconds were left and the Jazz determined that Doncic wouldn't be able to win the game-winner. As Doncic crossed the half-court line, they double-teamed him and took the ball from his hands. Dallas sixth man Spencer DinwiddieAt the buzzer, he missed a 3-pointer from the right side. This was the same spot where he made a buzzer-beater in an on-road win over the Brooklyn NetsMarch

Mitchell responded, “Make somebody else shot, to be truthful,” when Mitchell was asked what the key to the Jazz's last possession.[Doncic]It hits hard shots. This is what you want. Dinwiddie shot three of these shots in the same season. I was nervous when he shot it because I had seen him do those shots before. It's hard, but he's over Rudy Gobert at the end.

Doncic, who suffered an injury in the Mavs regular-season finale, felt winded at times on Saturday. In the first half, Doncic struggled defensively as the Jazz often targeted him while building an advantage of 54-42. He claimed that the calf didn't bother him.

Doncic stated that at the beginning of the game, he had only thought about it for a few seconds. Doncic has averaged 33.3 points and 8.9 boards in his 14 playoff games. “I think I lost track of it in the middle of game.”

Doncic also won large portions of the game. He was 11-of-21 from below the line and 4-of-10 at the 3-point range.

Gobert said, “I mean, that he's Luka.” Gobert had 17 points and 15 boards. He doesn't have to move fast to impact the game. However, he had a significant impact on the game, particularly down the stretch. He made some big plays. He is what he is because of that.”

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