Luka Doncic and his Dallas Mavericks teammates are all wearing jerseys standing for equality during their time in the Orlando bubble. Doncic, a native of Slovenia, has “Enakopravnost” written on the back of his jersey, which is the Slovenian word for equality.
As part of the NBA’s social justice efforts, the league is allowing players to wear certain messages on the back of their jerseys where their names would typically be located. The Mavericks wanted to shared a united message but also embrace the diversity on their team. The Mavericks all have the term equality on their jerseys but it is in six different languages, per The Undefeated.
“All @dallasmavs players will have the word “Equality” on the back of their jersey during the restart of the season,” Mavs.com’s Dwain Price reported on Twitter. “C/F Dwight Powell said Luka Doncic, Kristaps Porzingis, JJ Barea, Maxi Kleber and Boban Marjanovic will have ‘Equality’ on their jersey in their native language.”
The Mavericks Have 6 Different Languages Used on Their Jerseys
Dallas has taken one of the most unique approaches to the social justice jersey initiative of any team in the NBA bubble. The Mavericks released a statement on the team’s decision to share the word equality on the back of their jerseys.
“Equality is something that we know is mighty important, especially right now with what’s going on,” the Mavericks noted (via The Undefeated). “For some of the guys to put that in their native language kind of lends to the fact that we’re all part of this conversation regardless of where you come from or your race, creed, religion or whatever it may be.”
Mavericks big man Dwight Powell believes that having equality in each player’s native language sends a powerful message.
“I think in the conversations that we had as a team and we’ve had individually, equality is something that we know is mighty important, especially right now with what’s going on,” Powell told Mavs.com. “For some of the guys to put that in their native language kind of lends to the fact that we’re all part of this conversation regardless of where you come from or your race, creed, religion or whatever it may be. There are issues of racial injustice and systemic racism in this country. We have to be part of the conversation and the fight for equality.”
Luka Has Been One of the Stars of the NBA Bubble
Doncic is making a statement with his play in addition to the back of his jersey. The Mavericks guard has been one of the stars since the NBA restarted in Orlando. Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle noted that Doncic is as much of an entertainer as he is a basketball player.
“We’re seeing more things all the time,” Carlisle explained to ESPN. “Luka is not only a great basketball player, he’s a great performer. I’d pay money to watch him play. I don’t say that about a lot of players, but he’s really special.”