Denver Nuggets superstar Nikola Jokic has been named to Serbia’s 16-man preliminary roster for the upcoming Paris Olympics, quelling doubts about his participation in the basketball tournament. The announcement on Monday addressed speculation that Jokic might skip the event.

Jokic, a three-time NBA MVP, has previously missed significant international tournaments, often citing the exhaustion from long NBA seasons. With the Nuggets’ earlier-than-expected playoff exit this year, Jokic seems ready to rejoin his national team. The reigning champions were eliminated in the second round of the playoffs by the Minnesota Timberwolves, providing Jokic some unexpected downtime.

The Serbian star last represented his country at the 2022 EuroBasket tournament. His international career highlights include helping Serbia secure a silver medal at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

Serbia’s coach, Svetislav Pesic, also named notable NBA players in the preliminary roster, including Charlotte Hornets guard Nikola Jovic, Miami Heat forward Nikola Jovic, Atlanta Hawks sharpshooter Bogdan Bogdanovic, and Hornets forward Aleksej Pokusevski. The diverse and talented lineup aims to bolster Serbia’s chances of winning a Paris medal.

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Serbia will face a significant challenge in its Olympic opener on July 28, when it plays the United States. This matchup is highly anticipated, given the United States’ strong track record in basketball and Serbia’s reputation as a formidable opponent on the international stage.

Jokic’s inclusion on the roster is a promising sign for Serbia’s tournament aspirations. His exceptional skills and leadership on the court are expected to play a crucial role in Serbia’s pursuit of Olympic glory.

The Paris Olympics will be a critical test for Serbia, and with Jokic on the roster, the team’s prospects have significantly improved. The basketball community will closely follow Jokic’s journey and Serbia’s performance, anticipating a thrilling and competitive Olympic tournament.

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