Nikola Jokic is the reigning MVP of the NBA after posting some truly historical numbers during the 2020-21 season. Injuries hampered Jokic's Denver Nuggets massively last campaign and they continue to haunt them this season, which has led to the superstar center maybe not getting the level of recognition that he might deserve from the wider NBA world.
Jokic was described by some fans and members as one of the worst MVPs the league has ever seen and Denver's lack of playoff success factored into these claims. However, the only reason the Nuggets even made it to the Western Conference Semifinals was that Jokic carried the roster on his back. And his coach Michael Malone has now addressed the reason for disrespect (via Denver Post).
“I think he is one of the more disrespected reigning MVPs that I can think of in terms of the attention, but if you open up the dictionary, look up the word consistency, there's going to be a picture of Nikola there. That's going back to the bubble, that's going back to a 72-game season last year, and this year we knew Jamal was going to be out for an extended period.
"I mean, Nikola Jokic is not sexy, He's just not. His wife might disagree. There is nothing about Nikola that is sexy to people.
"But if you are a true student of the game, a coach, someone that loves the game being played the right way, then you appreciate him at the level that he should be appreciated at, but he is not going to be on SportsCenter dunking on somebody. He is not going to block a shot into the third row."
Jokic is a hybrid center, handling the ball and passing with incredible accuracy. Big Honey, as he has been nicknamed by some fans, may move slowly, but his scoring and efficiency make him an absolute killer on the court. Jokic is averaging 25 points, 14 rebounds, and 7 assists a game and has Denver as the 6th seed in the Western Conference, another season that could be worthy of an MVP if he can keep it up.