Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic has become one of the most unique players in the NBA. His unselfish, yet dominant game has helped him to win two MVPs and also lead the Nuggets to their first-ever NBA title.
On Saturday night, Jokic’s game earned him another impressive feat. With his 4,014th career assist, the big man joined Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar among the only centers to surpass that mark.
Jokic will likely leapfrog Russell by the end of the season and become the third-highest assisting center in NBA history.
Michael Malone reveals Denver Nuggets’ Nikola Jokic’s secret to success
Jokic has floored man fans and media members around the league with his unique playstyle. Mile High Sports’ Ryan Blackburn recently asked head coach Michael Malone what exactly has gotten Jokic to the level he’s at.
“Honestly? Just hard work,” Malone said. “It’s too bad that people can’t peek behind the curtain. But, when I say this, I’m not saying it in jest. Nikola Jokic — we do a pre-practice warmup routine — some guys go through it, they get through it. Nikola is sweating, he’s going through it hard. When he gets his lifting sessions, he’s going through it hard. When he’s at practice, he’s playing hard. There’s no magic formula. Yes, he’s incredibly gifted, high IQ, unbelievable feel for the game, passer, he sees things happen before most people even think about them happening. But, just give credit to his work ethic.”
Jokic and the Nuggets will be back in action on Monday when they host the New Orleans Pelicans. Tip-off will be at 7 p.m. MT.