Dallas Mavericks

Luka Doncic Admits He Never Practiced The Deceleration Moves He Does In A Basketball Game

Dallas Mavericks Luka Dončić

Luke Doncic got a lot of moves in his bag. He’s got a mean stepback going left, and he can pull up or go hard to the basket. After all, he scored 73 points in an NBA game recently! 

However, the Dallas Mavericks superstar admitted that one of his signature moves, the deceleration step, is a product of his feel rather than constant practice. The 24-year-old spilled the beans in an interview with JJ Redick on the Old Man & The Three Podcast

Here’s the whole interaction:

JJ: Going back to the 73-point game, it’s become so important on drives, right? To be able to decel, let the defense fly by or draw a foul. You had two against Atlanta off the right leg, bank shot. How did you develop that part of your game?

I watched you work out when I was your teammate. You go to certain speeds in your workout, but the full speed to the decel, how much are you practicing that? When did you develop that?

Luka: I didn’t practice that. I just…

JJ: You sick f—.

Luka: I just call it the slow step, you know. I remember one day, I try to teach DoDo (Dorian Finney-Smith). You just gotta do the slow step. You gotta go into the defender a little bit and then just slow step. He’s gonna jump, and if he don’t jump, you just go up.

I don’t know, maybe it’s the IQ.

JJ Redick and Luka Doncic on the latter’s deceleration moves

At this point, the game comes too easy for Doncic, although he said it’s not. He made the All-NBA First Team in four of his first five seasons, and he’s currently leading the league in points per game (34.5 PPG). 

MADRID, SPAIN - DECEMBER 03: Luka Doncic, #7 of Real Madrid in action during the Turkish Airlines Euroleague Basketball Regular Season Round 8 game between Real Madrid v Fenerbahce Istanbul at Barclaydcard Center on December 3, 2015 in Madrid, Spain. (Photo by Emilio Cobos/Euroleague Basketball via Getty Images)
Photo by Emilio Cobos/Euroleague Basketball via Getty Images

That said, it’s interesting that he attributed his “slow step” to IQ. There are things that these basketball players do instinctively, and that’s the one for the Slovenian. Maybe that’s how it is if you’re already a pro basketball player at 13 years old!