Ranking 4 potential Lakers Play-In opponents by threat level

Taking a look at which Play-In teams would be the smallest and biggest threats to the Lakers.

Max Christie, Bradley Beal
Max Christie, Bradley Beal / Harry How/GettyImages
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Less threatening: Dallas Mavericks

The star power of Luka Doncic continues to dominate the NBA. After locking up a Hall-of-Fame level resume before ever even moving to the United States, Luka Magic is continuing his historic run in the top basketball league in the world. Averaging a career-high 34.4 points and 9.7 assists, he is well on his way to his fifth straight All-NBA First Team selection.

Doncic got some top-notch help at the trade deadline last season when the Mavericks were able to pull off a deal for Kyrie Irving. The aging but still crafty as ever guard has been helping Dallas in a big way this season, most recently with his unbelievable left-handed hook shot to win the game over the defending champion Denver Nuggets on Sunday.

Perhaps the most underrated piece to this Mavericks team is the rookie Dereck Lively, who has helped Luka unlock his pick-and-roll game to an even greater degree. That said, this Dallas squad is still teetering on the edge of the playoffs.

They would likely be a more difficult matchup for the Lakers than the Suns simply given that Luka Doncic will unquestionably be the best player on the floor in a potential Lakers-Mavs series. But they still lack overall roster consistency from last season as well as playoff experience, and that is where LA would gain the upper hand.