Nuggets news: Nikola Jokic criticizes officials after ejection vs. Pacers
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Nikola Jokic criticizes officials after ejection vs. Pacers

Nuggets

The Denver Nuggets pulled out a victory late over the Indiana Pacers, 102-100, but they didn’t have their MVP candidate, Nikola Jokic, on the floor for it. That’s because just minutes prior, Jokic was ejected from the game after getting a quick pair of technical fouls for arguing with the officials. After the game, Jokic wasn’t denying his involvement, but said via Mike Singer of the Denver Post:

“It’s extremely hard because it’s not equal for everybody.”

Earlier in the week, it was Jokic who knocked down a game-winner at home to defeat the Dallas Mavericks. This time, it was frontcourt mate Paul Millsap, who scored the go-ahead bucket with seven seconds remaining. After the game, Millsap dished his advice on the Jokic situation, as well:

“It’s a learning curve. Every good player goes through it. Every good player thinks he deserves calls. The refs are seeing a lot more, they’ll get his game and they’ll get what other guys are doing to him and they’ll make the right call. He’s got to keep his composure.”

Jokic, a first-time All-Star in 2018-19, has established himself as one of the league’s top MVP candidates while averaging 20.3 points, 10.7 rebounds and 7.6 assists per game for a team currently in possession of the No. 2 seed in the Western Conference. Despite the Nuggets’ immense depth that has helped them to this point, if they’re to make their first NBA Finals appearance in franchise history, they’ll need Jokic both on the floor and playing at an elite level.