Nikola Jokic has won consecutive MVPs, as Adrian Wojnarowski reported on Monday, and considering how tight the MVP race was all season, this has courted some heated reactions from various NBA fans. While fans of the Denver Nuggets and those that put great stock in analytics think that Jokic winning makes complete sense, Joel Embiid's fans are understandably unhappy with the result.
Joel Embiid and Giannis Antetokounmpo both had stellar campaigns themselves, with Embiid garnering a lot of support for his case with his elite two-way play. And now his coach with the Philadelphia 76ers, Doc Rivers, has opened up on the MVP race and given his thoughts on Jokic being named MVP over Embiid.
"I don't know if a guy could've done more than he (Embiid) did this year, play without the second-best player all year. Listen, his resume was great. I'm not taking anything away from Jokic either because he's a hell of a player. I do think this whole analytic-driven society, world is out of control at times with some of the measures that they use. Like, watch the dang game and decide is what I've always said.
"But at the end of the day, if Joel had won, which I thought he should have, there would have been criticism that way, if Giannis had won. Only one guy could win unfortunately."
Jokic is absolutely a deserving MVP, but so would Embiid have been if the voters had picked him. Rivers is right in saying that the criticism was unavoidable regardless of who won, all three players had stellar seasons.
Embiid still has a chance to do something Jokic will be unable to this season, potentially leading his team to an NBA title. The Sixers have tied up their series against the Miami Heat at 2-2 since he returned in Game 3 and a Finals MVP would go a much longer way in making Joel's case than anything someone can say at this point.