Denver Nuggets Star Nikola Jokic And Coach Mike Malone Have Some Damning NBA All-Star Game Takes

Headline: Nuggets Star Nikola Jokic Game Doesn’t Set Him Apart Like It Should For A Two-Time MVP In The All-Star Game

NBA players past and present have often stated that the NBA All-Star Game is the best pickup basketball game in the world. Nuggets head coach Mike Malone and star player Nikola Jokic both were not feeling that way afterward on Sunday. Malone mentioned in his post game interview that most of the players didn’t show any real effort. Celtics star Jaylen Brown and ESPN analyst Stephen A. Smith echoed those same words.

Nikola Jokic at 2023 NBA All-Star Game in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo: Getty Images)

“It’s an honor to be here, it’s an honor to be a part of a great weekend, great players, but that is the worst basketball game ever played,” Malone said. “They put on a show for the fans, but that is a tough game to sit through, I’m not going to lie.”

Jokic took a different stance on the game. Instead of criticizing the actual game itself, he talked about how he fit within the All-Star Game.

Jokic Postgame Comments

The two-time MVP, possibly soon to be a three-time MVP, understands his game and knows that it is not appealing on an All-Star stage. Jokic is not a one-on-one player and is not the most athletic. Both things work against him in an All-Star setting where other players like Damian Lillard, Ja Morant, Jayson Tatum, or a Steph Curry get to show off their incredible skills that set them apart.

Jokic was the next-to-last pick in the All-Star draft that took place live right before the game. He kind of drafted himself to Team LeBron as he walked off the stage to LeBron James’ side before his name was called.

He felt bad afterward at leaving Utah Jazz forward Lauri Markkanen on the stage by himself to be the last pick, but he later apologized to him. A reporter asked him about the awkward moment after the game.

“No, I would not draft myself either [laughing]. I’m not meant for this game,” said Jokic.

All-Star Performance

Jokic didn’t have a bad outing in his fifth All-Star Game. He had 10 points, nine rebounds, and eight assists in 21 minutes of action. It was also the most minutes he has ever played in an All-Star Game.

That was a pedestrian performance for a two-time MVP, especially compared to Tatum’s 55 points. Jokic balls in the regular season when the games count. He is averaging 24.7 points, 11.5 rebounds, and 10.1 assists per game. It is his sixth year averaging at least 15 points, five rebounds, and five assists per game.

He only sits behind Giannis Antetokounmpo and Larry Bird for players who averaged at least 20 points, 10 rebounds, and five assists in their career in multiple seasons. Bird and Antetokounmpo are tied with five of those seasons, and Jokic currently has four.

Jokic’s game might not ever get him an All-Star MVP, but it has certainly help him bring home the hardware during the season. It has also helped his team climb to the top of the Western Conference Standings with a 41-18 overall record and five-game lead in front of the second-place Memphis Grizzlies.

What people are saying

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back to top