Nikola Jokic, Nuggets

Nikola Jokic will not be playing for Serbia in FIBA World Cup

Star center Nikola Jokic is a few months removed from leading the Denver Nuggets to their first NBA title.

Since then, Jokic has spent much of the offseason relishing what his accomplishment has brought. All that has led to him skipping on playing in the FIBA World Cup for Serbia.

“With Jokic, we had several conversations, and I must say they were some of the best conversations I’ve had with players who couldn’t make it to the roster,” Pesic said, according to MozzartSport. “He’s physically and mentally exhausted, not feeling ready to take responsibility at the moment.”


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Jokic may be in no condition to play for his national team. He previously played last offseason, where guided the team to a 5-0 record in EuroBakset 2022 before getting upset in the Round of 16 by Italy.

In the six games, he averaged 21.7 points, 10.0 rebounds, and 4.3 assists while shooting 66.2 percent from the floor and 46.2 percent from beyond the arc. Jokic has been the offensive centerpiece and central driving force for Serbia.

Jokic’s absence will leave a considerable void. Vasiije Micic also isn’t expected to play in the upcoming World Cup. Serbia holds a tough task ahead without two key talents.

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The tournament will begin on Aug. 25, and it will be played in Japan, Indonesia, and the Philippines. The 2023 World Cup will provide seven teams that will play in the 2024 Olympics in Paris.

Jokic will use the time off to rest and prepare for next season to help push the Nuggets to NBA title contention.

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