Nikola Jokic is not especially imposing. Other announcers keep describing how big he is, but after seeing him play next to Jusuf Nurkic and get shoved around by angry French shooting guard Evan Fournier, it’s hard for me to view him that way. He runs like he should be wearing a pocket protector on the court and still has a teenager’s string-bean walk, like his limbs have grown too fast and he doesn’t know what to do with them. The best thing he can do over the summer is work on his body, because right now he and Bugs Bunny share the same kind of muscle tone.
And yet Jokic is an absolute killer on the court. Against the Cavaliers, Jokic took apart their entire front-court, scoring on Kevin Love, Tristan Thompson and LeBron James at will, from a variety of angles. He even had a put-back dunk (the first I can remember from him). The amount of head-scratching and arguing from Cleveland as Denver’s offense boat-raced them was heart-warming as a Nuggets fan - and fitting payback for the demolition that Cleveland inflicted on the Nuggets back at Quicken Loans Arena earlier this year.
Jokic played within the offense, which led to having 7 players in double figures but none scoring more than 21 points. When this team does that, it’s basically unstoppable. Enjoy Nikola’s “restrained” performance against the world champs!