Meet Mirjam Poterbin: Mom of Mavs Superstar Luka Doncic

Mirjam Poterbin and mother

Although Luka Doncic has millions of adoring fans—his mom, Mirjam Poterbin, is undoubtedly his number one supporter. This has been the case long before Doncic broke into the NBA and made the Dallas Mavericks perennial contenders in the Western Conference.

The former Rookie of the Year award winner has proven to be an even match for everyone he comes up against. It doesn’t matter if he’s playing basketball against the Golden State Warriors, the Los Angeles Clippers, or even LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers.

It is clear that Doncic has a very bright future in basketball.

And while many are quick to credit his father, Sasa Doncic, because of his personal accolades in the sport, it’s Luka’s mom who really deserves the credit. Sure, Sasa had a solid career playing professional basketball in various European Leagues, but he and Mirjam divorced when Luka was just nine years old.

Luka’s mother had custody of him as a child. So it makes sense that she would have a more profound impact on his development as a person and a player.

Luka’s Loved Playing Basketball as a Child

Some NBA fans were shocked when the Mavericks traded for Luka Doncic at the 2018 NBA Draft, but so far so good. The Slovenian superstar made an instant impact in the league, mere months after watching his dreams come true.

Mirjam Poterbin and her mother get ready to watch a game (via @mirjampoterbin IG)

But his story starts way before he became the sensation Luka Doncic that we all know today.

As a child, Luka always loved basketball. His family alleges that he started playing ball before the age of one! Sure, it was in the form of a miniature hoop in his room, but clearly all of those extra reps paid off.

Then, at the age of seven he began playing what you’d consider ‘organized basketball’ for his primary school against kids up to three years old than him.

Doncic believes that this experience had a huge impact on his development as a player, particularly from a mental standpoint.

“I was playing with guys who were nine or ten, and that was the beginning,” Luka recalled to Euroleague.net. “I was always training and playing with older kids who had much more experience than me. Many of them were bigger and faster than me too, so I had to beat them with my brain.”

Luka Doncic’s Mom Help Make His Dreams Come True

Just because Doncic was a prodigy on the court, doesn’t mean he had it all figured out on his own.

His Mom, who recognized his insane gift, quickly realized she was going to have to make sure she kept the budding star humble, grounded, and disciplined. So much so, that she often used basketball as leverage to get him to do his chores.

Mirjam Doncic and Charles Barkley
Mirjam and Charles Barkley pose for a photo together (via @mirjampoterbin IG)

She could not keep the reigns on him long though. His last name, pedigree, and talent quickly earned him national attention in his home country and around Europe.

It may seem insane to fans in the U.S. but at the age of just 13, Luka signed a deal to play pro basketball in Spain. Yes, he was initially put into a youth academy, but not for long.

By the time Luka was 16 years old he was pulled up to play for Real Madrid in the ACB. This made him the third youngest person to ever play in the prestigious European league.

Mirjam’s efforts were already starting to pay off in a big way.

Luka Doncic And His Mom On Draft Night

Much was made about Luka Doncic leading up to the 2018 NBA Draft, as he was shockingly dubbed as the greatest prospect to ever come out of Europe.

Luka Doncic Mom Mirjam Poterbin NBA Awards
Luka and Mirjam on the red carpet before the NBA Awards (via @mirjampoterbin IG)

All in all, draft night was a big success for the Slovenian star in the making. But it was not without some controversy.

After he was selected, the cameras caught Luka Doncic and his table celebrating. That, of course, included a shot of his mom. And to no one’s surprise, America quickly learned about the former European beauty queen.

It was not just fans at home who notice, it also garnered some attention from Doncic’s soon to be peers. Like Andre Iguodala, who promptly fired off a not so subtle tweet that read, “Moms decent!!!” while watching the draft.

Shortly after, the clip took to Twitter like wildfire and everyone and their mother — pun intended — were creepily tweeting about her!

Existing on the wrong side of a ‘your mom’ joke is hard enough as a regular kid. I can only imagine Luka was none too happy when he saw that the entire internet was firing them off at the expense of him and his mother!

Surely this was not what he expected to happen on draft night!

Mirjam Poterbin’s Early Life and Career

Mirjam Poterbin was born on April 7th, 1974 in Slovenia to parents Milena and Anton Poterbin.

In 1993, at the age of 19, she participated in the Miss Slovenia pageant. Remember, this was before the days that you could just fire up Instagram, put up a few pictures and become a star. So for Poterbin to capitalize on her good looks, the pageant route was the only way to go.

Luka Doncic Mom Mirjam Poterbin
Mirjam participated in a Miss Slovenia pageant when she was younger (via @mirjampoterbin IG)

She followed a rather logical progression from there by marrying a professional athlete and opening up her own beauty salon.

She had to take the pageant route back in the day, but has since made herself an Instagram account with over 47,000 followers! Before Andre Iguodala gets too excited, though, her account is not like your typical Instagram models’ page. There are no real glamour shots or skimpy bikinis.

It is all rather wholesome content. Most of it is pictures of her and Luka at various events. There are also some health and fitness related posts, and other images representative of her life as a 47-year-old mother.

And you know what? I think that is for the best. Luka Doncic and his mom seem very close. It would be a shame if her social media clout got between the two of them.