Mavs’ Luka Doncic Could Play For Slovenia After Finals Run

Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks, NBA News
Peter Casey-USA TODAY Sports

Dallas Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic faces an optimistic outlook for representing Slovenia in the upcoming Olympic Qualifying Tournament after a lengthy NBA Finals run.

According to our own Grant Afseth, reporting for MavericksGameday.com, the Slovenian superstar will undergo evaluation by Slovenia’s medical team before being cleared to compete in early July.

Doncic ended the NBA Finals with several injuries, including a right knee sprain, left ankle soreness, and a thoracic contusion, which required painkilling injections for him to play.

Following the Mavericks’ loss to the Boston Celtics, Doncic was reluctant to discuss his participation in the qualifiers.

“I don’t want to talk about what’s next, man. I have some decisions to make. I’m just trying to get a little bit healthier,” Doncic said.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks, Slovenia, Olympics Updates

During his postseason media availability, Mavericks GM Nico Harrison expressed confidence that Doncic would play for Slovenia this summer.

“That’s probably one of his biggest joys,” Harrison said. “As long as he can walk, he’s probably going to play for them. That’s my expectation.”

Between a postseason run involving 22 games after a lengthy regular season and participation in the FIBA World Cup, many questioned whether Doncic would elect not to participate for Slovenia this summer, given the circumstances. However, he’s always remained intent on playing if he can.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks, Slovenia, Olympics Updates

Even on NBA Finals Media Day before Game 1, Doncic stated he will play for Slovenia if his knee is in sufficient condition.

“Yeah, I think we’ll see how my knee is,” Doncic said. “But if it’s good, I’m going to go play, yeah.”

Doncic is coming off a fifth consecutive All-NBA First-Team campaign, averaging 33.9 points (NBA leader), 9.8 assists, and 9.2 rebounds in 70 regular season games, becoming the first player to average these figures in a single season. He shot 48.7% from the floor, 38.2% from beyond the arc, and 78.6% on free throws.

During the Mavericks’ 22 postseason games, he averaged 28.9 points, 9.5 rebounds, and 8.1 assists while playing 40.9 minutes per game. He shot 44.6% overall, 32.2% from deep, and 76.5% from the free throw line.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks, Slovenia, Olympics Updates

For Doncic to guide Slovenia to another Olympic bid, the team will need to get through a competitive pre-Olympic Qualifier pool that features Giannis Antetokounmpo (Greece) and potentially Karl-Anthony Towns (Dominican Republic), along with Croatia having NBA talents like Ivica Zubac and Dario Saric.

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