Nikola Jokić is set to make his second appearance at the Olympic Games. GETTY IMAGES

NBA and Denver Nuggets superstar Nikola Jokic has secured a spot in Serbia's preliminary 16-player squad for the upcoming Paris Olympics. The announcement came from the Basketball Federation of Serbia, who unveiled the list curated by Serbian national team coach Svetislav Pesic on their official website this Monday.

It will be Jokic’s second Olympic Games, following Rio 2016 where he took home silver with the Serbian team. The six-time NBA All-Star decided not to play for the national team in the Tokyo 2020 edition of the Games in order to rest and recover from a hectic NBA season during the pandemic. 

Jokic concluded his season earlier than anticipated when the reigning champions, the Nuggets, were ousted in the second round of the playoffs by the Minnesota Timberwolves. He has since been enjoying leisure time, engaging in activities such as rafting alongside friends and his siblings over the past few weeks.

Aside from the Denver Nuggets centre, four more NBA players have been chosen to represent Serbia including Charlotte Hornets guard and former EuroLeague MVP Vasilije Micic, Miami Heat forward Nikola Jovic, Atlanta Hawks sharpshooter Bogdan Bogdanovic, and Hornets' forward Aleksej Pokusevski.

Official training camp for the team will begin 24 June and the first friendly games will be against the Netherlands and Turkiye in the first week of July. The team will then travel to Lyon to play against France on 12 July. 

Serbia will also play against Australia on 16 July and against the USA a day later in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. To cap off the pre-Olympic tour, they will play host to Japan on 21 July in their famous Belgrade Arena.