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Nuggets’ Nikola Jokic Reveals How He’d Form Star Duo with Mavs’ Luka Doncic

Nuggets superstar Nikola Jokic was asked if he could team up with Luka Doncic one day but admitted he would not want to leave Denver to make it happen.

Among the top storylines throughout this year's NBA All-Star Weekend was the continued display of the relationship between Nikola Jokic and Luka Doncic in what has become an annual tradition. Many have pondered, could the two NBA superstars team up one day? If so, would it be with the Denver Nuggets or Dallas Mavericks

Jokic was asked about the possibility of teaming with Doncic. With the question being asked in Serbian, the Nuggets superstar answered with a translation that suggests his lack of interest in leaving Denver but leaving an open invitation of sorts for Doncic. 

"I don't know if it's possible. I don't want to leave Denver," Jokic said in a translated answer to English. "I like it here, and it's a great organization. If Luka gets pissed off in Dallas, then he can come."

None of Jokic's perspectives is surprising. He's coming off a successful NBA Finals run with the only organization he's ever played for. He is a two-time MVP winner while being well-positioned to contend again and win another MVP. He has no reason to ponder departing from the Mile High City. 


Doncic, on the other hand, is coming off a season with the Mavs that ended in a 38-44 record, failing to qualify for the play-in tournament. However, there is plenty of optimism in Dallas. The team added Kyrie Irving last year and has since bolstered the supporting cast, including drafting Dereck Lively II and trading for P.J. Washington and Daniel Gafford. Additionally, the low-risk signings of Derrick Jones Jr. and Dante Exum have also provided plenty of value. 

Before the Mavs had made any of their trade maneuvers and were in the middle of an underwhelming January, Doncic conveyed his optimism in the Mavs' ability to contend for a championship, which remains his top goal — above the MVP. 

Doncic's belief in winning a championship in Dallas was included in a 1-on-1 interview with Ekipa24 in January. He emphasized it's important not to overlook the injuries the team had dealt with involving himself, Irving, and Lively — the team's "Big 3" — as he referred to them. 

"I'm not saying people aren't taking into account all of our injury problems this season, but maybe not enough of them,” Doncic told Andrej Miljkovic of Ekipa24 in an answer translated from Slovenian to English. "It was a serious injury crisis; there was always someone missing, and there was always someone important missing. In my opinion, we are even closer to being in perfect shape and at least approximately healthy now. Especially our 'Big 3,' as we would say here — we have played very little together in matches, even less in training. We still have to get used to it, even though we are already in the second half of the regular season."

Regarding what the Mavs lack, Doncic highlighted the need for more physicality from the team, suggesting that opponents are often significantly more physical against them when it should be the opposite. 

"As for what we lack and what we should do, it is clear that we should play much more physically," Doncic said. "Practically everyone is much more physical against us than we are against them. We need to change that."

Mavs coach Jason Kidd even noted in an interview with 97.1 The Freak in January that Doncic, averaging 34.2 points, 9.5 assists, and 8.8 rebounds, would win multiple championships in his NBA career. 

"This young man is 24 and is breaking all the records that stand in front of him," Kidd said. "He's a winner, and his ultimate goal is to win a championship. And he will get there and not just win one, but he will win multiple when it's all said and done."

Kidd went as far as to say that Doncic is "better" than Dirk Nowitzki already, but the focus must be on adding the right people around him to win a championship ultimately. 

"I've said this internally: He is better than Dirk. He does things that Dirk could never do, and now is the opportunity of getting the right people around him to ultimately win a championship," Kidd said.

The Mavs entered the All-Star break having won six consecutive games, tied with the Boston Celtics as the longest active winning streak. Dallas holds a 32-23 record, ranking seventh in the Western Conference standings, trailing the Phoenix Suns and New Orleans Pelicans by only one game. 

The logistics required for Doncic to depart from the Mavs would be complicated. He has a player option worth under $49 million for the 2026-27 season that he could decline, but he would be turning down the option to sign what could be a five-year, $318 million supermax contract extension. He is positioned to become the NBA's highest-paid player and the first to earn over $70 million annually.