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Dwight Howard’s true feelings toward Nikola Jokic amid vicious trash talk

Dwight Howard, Lakers, Nikola Jokic, Nuggets

Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard has been trash-talking Denver Nuggets star big man Nikola Jokic through the first three games of the Western Conference Finals, so many believe Howard doesn’t like Jokic.

However, that’s not the case at all.

During an interview with Jeff Zillgitt of USA TODAY Sports, Howard admitted he enjoys competing against Jokic and thinks the Nuggets All-Star is a terrific player.

“I like him a lot,” Dwight Howard said about Nikola Jokic.

“He plays under control, doesn’t let anybody rush him, he gets to his spots, he makes plays for his teammates. He rebounds. He does a little bit of everything. He’s a complete player. I love playing against him.”

Jokic and the Nuggets defeated Howard and the Lakers in Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals by eight points. Los Angeles now leads the best-of-seven series 2-1.

Howard was almost ejected in Game 3 for yapping, though this was mostly at the refs. The Lakers veteran is clearly trying to get in Jokic’s head, but it’s not working. The Joker is averaging 24.3 points, 7.3 rebounds and 5.3 assists in the first three games of the series while shooting 54.2 percent from the field and 82.6 percent from the free-throw line.

The Lakers are under pressure now to win Game 4. If the Nuggets tie the series at 2-2, some doubt may creep into L.A.’s head.

With that being said, look for Lakers superstars LeBron James and Anthony Davis to come out aggressive early in Game 4.