By Antonis Stroggylakis/ firstname.lastname@example.org
Nikola Jokic met with Serbian national team head coach Sasa Djordjevic and announced him that he won’t participate in the EuroBasket.
As Sporski Jurnal reported, the Denver Nuggets center told Djordjevic that he’ll be unable to respond to the invitation for the European Championship tournament (August 31 to September 17) where Team Serbia is one of main title contenders.
This decision mainly has to do with the Jokic’s preference to dedicate his offseason to individual workouts in order to physically improve ahead of the new season.
It has to be mentioned that Nuggets executives like Tim Connelly and Arturas Karnisovas have said that they didn’t have any influence on the player’s decision and it’s 100% Jokic’s choice to decline the call for the national team.
Jokic, 22, was one of the key characters of Serbia in the silver medal achievement of the 2016 Olympic Games, averaging 9.1 points, 6 rebounds and 2.4 assists per game. He also scored 25 in a near-upset vs Team USA.
While he came off the bench in Rio, Jokic could’ve easily been a starter in the EuroBasket taking into consideration not only the brilliant season he had (16.7 points, 9.8 rebounds, 4.9 assists per game), but also Miroslav Raduljica’s deteriorating physical condition which led to an abrupt season (and contract) ending with Olimpia Milano.