On Tuesday morning, NBA.com released its annual GM survey, where league executives are prompted on several different topics. Things like, best player, MVP pick, best defensive team, and more are things that GMs are asked their opinions of. Sprinkled throughout the survey was Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic.
Jokic is a favorite amongst those in charge around the league. He received the most votes across several different categories, including:
- MVP pick
- Player that GMs would like to start a franchise with
- Best center
- Best passer
- Best Basketball IQ
The Joker’s prominence throughout the survey shouldn’t come as a surprise. The reigning Finals MVP has been at the top of many lists and polls this summer, after leading the Nuggets to the franchise’s first-ever NBA championship.
Jokic’s monster playoff run was enough to capture the attention of just about anyone who had been watching the postseason. He put together an insane stretch of play, averaging 30.0 points, 13.5 rebounds, and 9.5 assists per game while shooting 54.8 % overall and 46.1% from beyond the arc.
Lakers wing Jarred Vanderbilt says Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic was ‘always different’
Players who have been around Jokic at practices and have watched him go to work, have known that he was special for quite some time. Former Nuggets, and now-Los Angeles Lakers wing, Jarred Vanderbilt recently spoke to when he realized The Joker was “different.”
“He was just different,” Vanderbilt told Theo Pinson during a recent appearance on his “Run Your Race” podcast. “Once he realized how nice he was, and the impact he could do, when he was there he was always just super nice. But they were kinda pushing him like, go get MVP… Once he got to realizing he could do that sh-t, it was over with at that point. ”
Vanderbilt spent his first season-and-a-half playing alongside Jokic in Denver before he was traded away to the Minnesota Timberwolves.