If one was to look at the NBA right now, the names Andrew Wiggins, Carl Anthony-Towns, Anthony Davis, Zach Lavine, and Miles Plumlee would all flood this “rising star” category; moreover, there is one team that always seems to fly under the radar though. A team that has a rich history and a solid fan base. A team that is now known for its multitude of international players, one of which has made a surprising appearance ever since All-Star Weekend came about. This team: the Denver Nuggets, this rising star: Nikola Jokic.
Jokic is a crucial player for the Denver Nuggets. He also represents the Serbian national basketball team internationally. Standing at 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m), he plays at the center position. He was selected with the 41st overall pick by the Denver Nuggets in the 2014 NBA draft. With all these credentials, many Nuggets fans were not expecting him to make much noise in the league, and, at first, he stayed quiet… Until All-Star weekend came about.
Many know of the NBA’s All-Star Weekend as one of the biggest events of the year. Jokic, having touted respectable numbers throughout the season prior, was selected to the West All-Star team and wasn’t expected to make the crowd “ooh” and “ahh”… But he did just that.
During this All-Star break Jokic showed out. During his first few possessions with the rock, he showcased his crafty handles and his no look passes to guards who themselves seemed baffled by the big man. The international flare was on display as Jokic tallied up his notable plays and finesse.
Due to his flashy, unorthodox performance at NBA All-Star Weekend, Jokic started getting major media attention. This attention did not go unscathed either. As the regular season has progressed, Jokic has continued to showcase his court prowess and acumen. It is almost like the All-Star Weekend opened up a new side to Jokic, one that the media (Denver and National alike) are eating up.
The Nugget’s media has even utilized Jokic’s off-court humor and jocular presence to capitalize on social media schemes as well. The nickname “The Joker” has caught on and every news outlet from here to Timbuktu. So keep your eye out for Jokic as he looks to continue his already explosive season.
– Andrew Davis