Luka Doncic promised to forego his offseason vacations to help Slovenia punch their ticket to Tokyo for the Olympic games. That promise was fulfilled.
The Dallas Mavericks superstar led the Slovenian men’s basketball team to the Olympics for the first time ever defeating a Lithuanian team with NBA players, Domantas Sabonis, Jonas Valanciunas 96-85. The win secures the first of the final four spots in Tokyo.
Slovenia had won the 2017 European Championship with an 18-year-old Doncic making the all-tournament team. However, when the team did not qualify for the 2019 FIBA World Cup, this tournament was the last chance for Olympic qualification.
Luka Doncic came out aggressive from the start collecting a stat line of 21 points, 6 rebounds and 5 assists by halftime.
By the end of the game, Luka “The Don” finished with a triple-double, dropping a game-high 31 points with 13 assists and 11 rebounds.
Memphis Grizzlies center, Jonas Valanciunas for Lithuania finished with 14 points while Indiana Pacers forward Domantas Sabonis had nine. Lithuania with the loss failed to qualify for the Olympics for the first time since the 1992 Barcelona Games.
The other three men’s basketball spots in the Tokyo Olympic Games were determined on Sunday, as six other teams tip-off in FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament finals.
Slovenia won the first final of the day on Sunday in Lithuania and will round out Group C, which already consists of Argentina, Japan, and Spain.
Doncic’s teammates entered Luka’s press conference to celebrate their first Olympic berth in history.
Luka’s teammates interrupted his press conference to celebrate after Slovenia booked their first trip to the Olympics.— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) July 4, 2021
It was awesome 👏 pic.twitter.com/shjtww2u95