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“You have to go to practice but you want to be on a beach somewhere” - Luka Doncic on representing Slovenia this summer

Slovenia v Poland: Quarterfinal Round  - FIBA EuroBasket 2022
Slovenia v Poland: Quarterfinal Round - FIBA EuroBasket 2022

During the Dallas Mavericks' media day, Luka Doncic addressed playing for Slovenia in the NBA offseason. He discussed playing in the tournament instead of vacationing like most of his contemporaries.

"I mean there's a lot of feelings you know," Doncic said. "You represent your country, you basically give up your summer to play for your country, you know. I respect everybody that does that.
Luka on representing Slovenia this summer. 🇸🇮Keep up with #NBAMediaDay: app.link.nba.com/e/mediaday2022 https://t.co/3m8ygTnHox
"It's really hard. At some point you have to go to practice but you want to be on a beach somewhere, but I always enjoy every moment playing for my national team."

The Slovenian team was knocked out in the quarterfinals of EuroBasket 2022 by Poland, losing the game 90-87. However, they finished first in their group, Group B, and won 4 matches during the group stage.

Predicting Dallas Mavericks lineups with Luka Doncic, Christian Wood

Golden State Warriors v Dallas Mavericks - Game Four
Golden State Warriors v Dallas Mavericks - Game Four

The Mavericks have made some strong moves in the offseason. They acquired Christian Wood from the Houston Rockets and JaVale McGee from the Phoenix Suns.

At the trade deadline last season, the Mavs sent Kristaps Porzingis to the Washington Wizards and for Spencer Dinwiddie. In retrospect, this was perhaps the best trade at the deadline.

Dinwiddie's shooting in Game 7 of the Western Conference semifinals against the Phoenix Suns was essential to their win. He scored 30 points on 5-7 from 3-point range. He shot 51.6% from three-point range in that series, on 4.2 attempts a game.

After blowout Game 7 loss in West semifinals, the Phoenix Suns will host the Dallas Mavericks in the season opener for both teams on Oct. 19, per sources. Luka Doncic and his new backcourt starter, Spencer Dinwiddie, vs. Devin Booker and Chris Paul.

The Mavs lost Jalen Brunson, their second-highest scorer in the playoffs, to the New York Knicks in free agency. However, the Mavericks are well-suited to make a deep playoff run again.

The starting lineup will likely include Luka Doncic and Spencer Dinwiddie in the backcourt. The frontcourt could consist of Reggie Bullock, Dorian Finney-Smith and JaVale McGee.

However, Christian Wood will likely start for this team. At six-foot-ten, Wood is traditionally a power forward but has played at the center position for the last two seasons.

Luka Doncic and Wood's pick-and-roll/pick-and-pop will most certainly be exciting. The bench includes Maxi Kleber, Davis Bertans, Tim Hardaway Jr., Frank Ntilikina and Dwight Powell.

The sheer amount of spacing on this roster opens up exciting opportunities for Luka Doncic. A potential small-ball lineup with Christian Wood at center would result in four extremely potent catch-and-shoot threats.

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Edited by Chad Marriott
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