Nuggets coach Michael Malone makes interesting comparison between LeBron James, Nikola Jokic
While talking to reporters about how Jerami Grant fits in with the Nuggets, Malone threw out some praise for Jokic. According to Malone, it’s great to have a player like Jokic who can make everyone on the team better — much like LeBron James.
“When I was in Cleveland we used to always laugh and we’d say, ‘Well, this player’s better with LeBron.’ Who isn’t? Here we say, ‘Well this guy’s better with Nikola.’ Same thing. Well, who isn’t?” Malone said, per Harrison Wind of DNVR Sports.
“Nikola is a great player who maes all his teammates better. I think the beauty of Nikola Jokic as your cornerstone and center piece is that Jerami Grant, Paul Millsap, whoever it is can play alongside him and do so in a really efficient and effective manner.
Sure enough, some would argue that Jokic is far from the transcendent player that LeBron is. However, it can’t also be denied how skilled and talented is Jokic, especially with his passing given his size.
The Serbian big man is considered the best passing big man in the league today, averaging 7.3 assists per game last season on top of his 20.1 points and 10.8 rebounds.
LeBron is considered one of the best all-round players in the history of the NBA, and his court vision and monster athleticism sets him apart from others. Jokic may not have that freakish athleticism, but he can also do the necessary things on both ends of the floor.
It’s also worth noting that NBA executives, in the latest annual NBA GM survey, consider Jokic as the top NBA center in the league today. With that said, it’s hard to blame Malone for making the comparison.