Yesterday, Nikola Jokic was in danger of becoming the first MVP ever to get swept in the first round of the playoffs.
Today, he's talking about a series comeback after capturing a win in Game 4. With 37 points, 8 rebounds, and 6 assists on the night, Jokic didn't let his team go down without a fight.
Although none of the 143 other teams who faced a 3-0 deficit in the NBA playoffs ever bounced back to advance, the Nuggets became the league’s first team ever to overcome 3-1 deficits in consecutive series two years ago when they bounced the Jazz and Clippers in the Orlando bubble.
“The odds are against us,” said MVP favorite Nikola Jokic. “But we’ve beaten the odds a couple of times, so why not?”
The Nuggets have been in situations like this before. During the bubble season, they came back from down 3-1 in the back-to-back series, becoming the first team ever to pull off such a feat.
This time, the task will be even harder.
To come back from down 3-0 to this Warriors team, with Steph Curry, Klay Thompson, Jordan Poole, and Draymond Green would be a borderline miracle.
But if anybody can pull it off, it's Jokic. Besides being nearly unguardable, the guy has a strong playmaking ability that gets all of his teammates involved.
It's no wonder why he's on the verge of winning his second straight MVP.
"You look at the impact. The name of the award is "The Most Valuable Player". Who has been the most valuable for the team? I think "valuable", I would vote for Jokic," said Jazz big man Rudy Gobert. "He was the most impactful for his team. Those guys all had amazing years. Giannis, Joel, a lot of other guys. Makes all of his teammates better, he makes defense so difficult and he’s playing the game at such an easy pace.”
With no Jamal Murray or Michael Porter Jr., the Nuggets are battling for their playoff lives shorthanded. With Jokic, however, they have a chance to beat any team in the West.
If not, you can bet the Nuggets will be ready to compete next year, when they're fully healthy and re-tooled in the offseason.