Early this week, it was confirmed that Nuggets center Nikola Jokic had tested positive for COVID-19. Jokic, who was having a career year scoring the ball, was looking to take Denver to the ultimate stage and overcome the tough Western Conference led by his dominance.
Jokic was averaging 20 points on 51% shooting from the field. Many insiders were considering the big man to be the best center in the NBA this season. He can space the floor like none other and can often display his point guard status dishing the rock. Jokic is a rare breed of a center that can play all five positions on the floor. His assertiveness is the backbone of Denver’s success and there will be only more going forward.
Despite being known as the best big, the one problem for Jokic has always been his weight. The big man not being in the best physical condition is what would possibly cost him of ever winning a championship. His skill set may be at the top tier level. But when May and June roll around, it is all about who is the healthiest.
Luckily, through this pandemic, Jokic surprised us with a look we thought we’d never see: a slim figure. The NBA suspension has only given these players more time than ever before. And Jokic used this long break to come back a better man. Seeing Jokic in better shape has Nuggets fans more optimistic that they can make a huge run in the West. With a lot of downtime at home, a healthy and conditioned Jokic and be a huge difference-maker in the postseason.
Denver has quietly been the killer out west. They use their home court to their advantage and just torch teams with their ball movement and three-point shooting. It’s without question that this team can match up against the Lakers, Clippers, Rockets, etc. In retrospect, Denver may have the best supporting cast around Jokic. Their bench understands what is needed on the floor anytime they check-in for the team. The bench is more likely going to be the key reason Denver gets out of a series. Without the bench players, Denver’s success is limited.
The NBA world hopes that Jokic can recover soon from the coronavirus. He has become a beloved big man around the association. The world anticipates for him to be in Orlando by the start of training camp and participating in getting ready.
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