DENVER – Sporting a new haircut on Monday, Nikola Jokic he will enter the Western Conference files with a fresh mind.
Although this may be Denver Nuggets‘ Second conference finals against Los Angeles Lakers starting in 2020, Jokic says this will be new against a new team. Which is good, because when asked what he learned from the Nuggets’ five-game losing streak LeBron James with the Lakers in the bubble, Jokic said, “Honestly, nothing. I don’t remember.”
Jokic will never recognize these Lakers. Since the teams last met on January 9, the Lakers have gone from strength to strength Russell Westbrook, Patrick Beverley, Kendrick Nunn, Juan Toscano-Anderson, Thomas Bryant and Kendrick Nunn and added Rui Hachimura, D’Angelo Russell, Jared Vanderbilt, Malik Beasley, I’m Bamba and Tristan Thompson.
In the title group in 2020, only James is Anthony Davis stay.
“We didn’t play with the Lakers like that [team], Jokic said. Maybe everything is new, everything is different.
“They’re playing amazing in these playoffs [the trade] on the last day, he is playing very well.”
Jokic also spoke highly of his senior teammate Davis. This will be Jokic’s biggest postseason test after facing Minnesota Karl-Anthony Towns and Rudy Gobert in the first round and Deandre Ayton in the second round.
“AD is a guard in a 7-foot-2 body,” the Nuggets forward said Aaron Gordon. “He can shoot the ball very well, he can draw fouls so you have to be careful with your hands. He can shoot the middy, dunk off both shoulders, just his skill at being that big.”
Yes, the Lakers will have to contend with Jokic, who has added two MVP trophies since last seeing him in the Western Conference finals.
Jokic is entering a new streak of three-pointers in his last four games against the Suns. He averaged 34.5 points, 13.2 rebounds and 10.3 assists while shooting 59.4% from the field against Phoenix.
Denver head coach Michael Malone says Jokic has always been great on the court, but in recent years, he has matured.
“Nikola to me has been the definition of greatness for a while,” Malone said. “The versatility with which he plays, the level with which he plays is just amazing at times. [But] he has changed. He is married, he is a father, and he is mature.
“I’m sure the game is still slow for him. But he’s done really well. Jamal [Murray] It was great and Nikola is still doing things that few guys in NBA history have done. The series that just came off against Phoenix in a triple whammy was amazing. “
Jokic hopes the Lakers will see a different Nuggets team in the Western Conference finals. Has Murray and Michael Porter Jr., Jokic’s new team now boasts the likes of former Laker Aaron Gordon. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Bruce Brown and Jeff Green.
“We’re very experienced,” Jokic said of the current squad. “We’ve been there before. Maybe we’ve added a little, don’t look too hard, [but playing in] different places [than the bubble]. So I think we’re more experienced, playing together a little bit more. “