As the FIBA World Cup approaches and former Mavericks teammates Luka Doncic and Jalen Brunson find themselves on their respective national teams, the anticipation for their showdown builds.
Tonight the United States and Slovenia are scheduled to clash in a preparation game in Malaga, Spain, offering fans a glimpse of these NBA talents in an international setting. Ahead of the game, Brunson shared his sentiments about his connection with Doncic, highlighting the depth of their relationship.
Speaking to Joe Vardon of The Athletic, Brunson expressed his admiration for Doncic, saying, “That’s my brother… I’ve been watching him grow since meeting him for the first time, seeing the player he is now.” Brunson’s words captured the evolution of Doncic’s game and his meteoric rise to becoming a top-tier player and perennial MVP contender in the league.
Brunson’s respect and affection for Doncic are evident as he emphasized the special nature of their bond. He elaborated, “Whenever I get a chance to share the court with him, either with him or against him, it’s always been special. I’ve got nothing but love for him.” The camaraderie developed through shared experiences and growth on and off the court resonates deeply between the two players.
While acknowledging the competition that arises when facing each other on the court, Brunson affirmed the unique connection they share outside of the game. “Obviously when we’re playing and we aren’t teammates, we aren’t friends, but off the court, it’s (a) special (relationship),” he noted.
The two players will not go against each other in the preparation game after it was announced that Doncic will sit it out.