2021 Playoffs: West First Round | Clippers vs. Mavericks

Luka Doncic (neck strain) available for Game 4 vs. Clippers

Doncic first complained of a sore neck during Friday's Game 3 loss.

The Clippers, despite getting on the board with a Game 3 victory over the Mavericks, have struggled to contain Dallas superstar Luka Doncic. The Slovenian wunderkind has averaged 38.0 points, 8.7 rebounds and 9.0 assists, with 51.9%/45.9%/48.1% shooting splits. (Yes, he’s just 13-for-27 at the line.)

A neck strain suffered in Game 3 offered the brief hope of respite, but the Mavericks superstar was cleared to play ahead of Game 4 on Sunday.

Coach Rick Carlisle sounded an optimistic note in his off-day media availability, telling reporters, “Questionable generally, from what I’ve seen this year with other teams and our team, is more likely to play than not play in most cases. I think he’s probably going to play and I hope he’s feeling better tomorrow.”

He still cautioned that this is the type of injury that can become significantly more painful overnight, and it would take a game time check-in to be certain. Sunday afternoon, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Doncic was indeed expected to play.

The fifth-seeded Mavericks lead the fourth-seeded Clippers, 2-1, in their seven-game series. Game 4 is set for 8:30 ET Sunday at American Airlines Center.