If the season ended right now, then who would be the NBA’s most valuable player?
Tonight, Nikola Jokic was overtaken by fellow MVP frontrunner Giannis Antetokounmpo in Milwaukee, finishing with an almost triple-double in just three quarters as the Nuggets steamrolled past the Bucks, 136-100.
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The rising Nuggets have now won five in a row and are fast on their way to the falling Utah Jazz for the fifth seed in the West, which has lost five games in a row. After tonight’s performance, Jokic may also have moved ahead of the Greek freak in the race for the league’s MVP honors.
In the eight games leading up to the competition with Milwaukee, Jokic had averaged 29.3 points per game. match along with 13.1 rebounds and 10.5 assists on 59-45-93 shooting split.
Jokic also leads the league in triple-doubles this season with 12 (he has had six in January alone), and had almost another Sunday where he dropped a rebound shyly with 18 points, 15 assists and nine rebounds.
The Serbian big man also joined Wilt Chamberlain’s exclusive company as only the second center to twice record six triple doubles in a single calendar month.
Antetokounmpo had 29 points and nine rebounds as the Bucks lost their second game in their last five.
Between Jokic and Antetokounmpo, the two have won the last three MVP awards, and Denver – and Jokic – seek to replicate the team success that Milwaukee had last season in winning a championship. After the fight on Sunday, Jokic said he admired his fellow MVP candidate.
Nikola Jokic about admiring Giannis: “Will I do what he did in Denver? Of course.”
– Mike Singer (@msinger) January 31, 2022
The Nuggets’ center has taken up this season just where he left the previous one.
Jokic plays some of the best basketball of his career and is currently in the process of concluding the 2021-2022 campaign with the highest player performance rating in NBA / ABA history.
If we take a look at Jokic’s numbers from his MVP season in 2020-21, and the 44 games he has played this season, they look eerily similar.
The Nuggets have won 10 of their last 13 games, including Sunday’s blowout of the Bucks at home, which was 19-4 with their big three (Antetokounmpo, Jrue Holiday and Khris Middelton) playing.