Denver Nuggets have been the team to beat this season in the playoffs and that is due to Nikola Jokic and his influence on their gameplay. Jokic, who is the former two-time MVP looks like he is out there to prove a point this time. His exceptional ability to do it all by himself forced Charles Barkley to compare the big man with Spurs legend Tim Duncan.
Jokic’s elite footwork and his ability to hit threes off the wrong leg make people draw similarities with Duncan. Barkley was reluctant to make a comparison but ultimately he felt that Jokic does have a shade of the former Spurs legend Tim Duncan in the way he plays and carries himself on the court.
“He’s [Jokic] taking it to another level.” Chuck said.”The thing he tripped be out, those one-legged floaters. Off the wrong leg, and things like that. Hakeem [Olajuwon] and Kevin [McHale], they were going to shoot a fadeaway or an up and under. This dude is shooting one-legged floaters off the wrong leg.”
Barkley enjoys how Jokic is always doing what is expected of him and never likes to complain and enjoys what he is doing. Hence, he feels that Duncan was also in the same category, who took pride in playing basketball and there wasn’t much noise about him off the court, something that resonates with the Joker.
“Just the way he plays. He’s just like, ‘Hey, I just wanna play basketball. This is my job, I ain’t gon’ complain, if a guy’s open, I’mma pass the ball. I don’t care who gets the glory.’ He reminds me of Tim Duncan.” the former Phoenix Suns star continued. “Tim Duncan’s the greatest power forward ever. He never complained, just went out and played basketball, you don’t know a lot about him off the court, that’s what the Joker reminds me of.”
Jokic’s way of domination is different from Duncan though. He drops a triple-double in almost every game. His elite passing, shooting and ability to move defenders at his will, make him a very dangerous player to lock up. It is his all-round skill in the game that hands him the edge over others.
Courtesy of another Nikola Jokic masterclass, the Denver Nuggets are have won Game 2 and are now 2-0 up against the Los Angeles Lakers. Jokic, who slammed a 34-point triple-double in Game 1, dropped a 23-point triple-double in the second game as the Nuggets won 108-103 over the Lakers.
Jokic finished 23 points, 17 boards and 12 assists whereas Jamal Murray dropped 37 points, 10 boards and five assists. LeBron James finished with 22 points, 10 assists and nine rebounds and lastly, Anthony Davis finished with 18 points, 14 boards and four assists.
Game 3 now becomes a very crucial encounter for the Lakers, who have not looked themselves in this series. The Lakers will return to their home court and hope that it brings luck and they finally get on board.