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Nikola Jokic doesn’t want to think about the returns of Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr.

The more the days pass, the more Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr. are getting closer to a return to competition. After almost 11 months of waiting for the leader, victim of a rupture of a cruciate ligament in April 2021, against almost 4 months of convalescence for the winger, back operated in November 2021.

Inevitably, this prospect comes at the right time for the Nuggets, currently ranked in 6th place in the Western Conference (36 wins – 25 losses). Largely thanks to the exploits of Nikola Jokic, elected MVP in 2021 and who maintains an incredible level of play this season: 25.5 points, 13.8 rebounds, 8.0 assists and 1.4 interceptions on average (at 57% on shots, 36% at 3- pts and 81% in throws)!

However, even if Denver could soon be full again as the playoffs approach (or almost full, because Vlatko Cancar is injured in the foot), the “Joker” does not want to ignite on the returns upcoming Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr.

« To be completely honest, I don’t think about it “, he confided on this subject. ” I’d rather they come back healthy than in a rush. That’s why I don’t think about it. Above all, I wish them a 100% return. As for me, I just make sure to win every game. And I feel fit. »

Returns expected… but not necessarily immediately beneficial?

Cautious, Nikola Jokic is probably aware that reintegrating Michael Porter Jr. and especially Jamal Murray (who carries the ball more than “MPJ”) will require more or less time to adapt. Especially since doing so at this stage of the season is not particularly optimal, since the important deadlines arrive quickly and the margin of error is reduced accordingly.

Still, in the event that the Murray / Porter Jr. duo struggles to regain their splendor as soon as they return to the courts, the Nuggets have at least one certainty: that of the solidity of their “role players”, who have brilliantly taken over the interim in recent months.

« The beauty of basketball lies in the fact that there will always be a player to raise his level of play: Monte [Morris], [Aaron Gordon]Will Barton… “, thus noted Nikola Jokic, who must undoubtedly hope that the future presence of his two lieutenants does not disturb the collective alchemy found in their absence. ” We play collectively and someone constantly manages to outdo themselves. We should be happy to find ourselves above 50% of victories, considering our injuries. But I think we shouldn’t think about it either, because we need to look forward instead. »

And what is also certain is that Jamal Murray (like Michael Porter Jr.) will not fail to want to do well, once fully recovered from his injury suffered in the spring of 2021. In the hope, in particular, of doing better that this conference final reached in 2020, in the Orlando “bubble”…

« I think he can’t wait any longer “, estimated to conclude Nikola Jokic, about the Canadian leader. ” He is eager to return to competition, because he is a very competitive person. He travels with us outside, he is in contact with the team and he is on the right track. »

Tirs Bounces
Players MJ Min Tirs 3pts LF Off Def Until Pd Bp Int Ct Fte Pts
Nikola Jokic 54 33.1 56.7 36.6 80.5 2.8 10.9 13.7 8.0 3.7 1.4 0.7 2.6 25.8
Will Barton 53 32.3 44.8 37.3 80.2 0.6 4.3 4.9 3.9 1.9 0.8 0.5 1.5 15.4
Aaron Gordon 55 31.8 52.1 33.9 74.2 1.6 4.2 5.9 2.6 1.8 0.7 0.5 1.9 14.6
Monte Morris 54 30.1 48.4 39.3 85.7 0.4 2.6 3.0 4.3 1.0 0.7 0.2 1.2 12.9
Jeff Green 56 24.5 50.4 31.4 82.3 0.5 2.6 3.1 1.3 0.9 0.3 0.4 2.1 10.2
Bryn Forbes 17 20.0 45.0 42.0 89.5 0.1 0.9 1.1 1.2 0.8 0.2 0.1 1.6 10.1
Michael Porter, Jr. 9 29.4 35.9 20.8 55.6 1.0 5.6 6.6 1.9 1.3 1.1 0.2 1.8 9.9
Bones Hyland 48 18.0 36.7 34.3 87.3 0.2 2.6 2.7 2.1 1.2 0.5 0.3 2.1 8.7
Zeke Nnaji 39 16.7 54.0 48.7 61.3 1.4 2.3 3.7 0.4 0.5 0.3 0.3 1.9 6.8
Demarcus Cousins 9 13.2 31.6 26.3 70.8 1.9 4.6 6.4 1.1 2.4 0.8 0.3 2.9 6.4
Jamychal Green 47 15.0 45.7 28.4 87.7 1.0 2.7 3.7 0.9 0.9 0.7 0.4 2.3 6.3
Austin Rivers 46 21.2 41.5 34.6 69.0 0.3 1.4 1.7 1.2 0.8 0.7 0.1 1.6 6.1
Facundo Campazzo 55 20.0 37.8 32.0 80.6 0.4 1.5 1.9 3.7 1.1 1.1 0.4 2.0 5.9
P.j. Dozier 18 18.9 36.4 31.2 76.9 0.8 2.7 3.5 1.6 0.7 0.6 0.3 1.8 5.4
Vlatko Cancar 14 10.9 56.4 58.3 75.0 0.4 1.2 1.6 0.9 0.6 0.1 0.2 0.9 4.3
Markus Howard 23 5.9 36.5 42.6 92.9 0.0 0.3 0.3 0.3 0.3 0.3 0.0 0.5 3.9
Of that Reed 30 13.4 47.4 43.4 80.0 0.3 2.1 2.5 1.0 0.3 0.6 0.1 1.3 3.9
bol bol 14 5.8 55.6 25.0 40.0 0.3 1.1 1.4 0.4 0.3 0.1 0.1 0.3 2.4
Rayjon Tucker 3 9.8 50.0 50.0 75.0 0.3 1.0 1.3 1.3 0.0 0.3 0.0 1.0 2.0
James Ennis 3 4.6 33.3 0.0 0.0 0.3 0.3 0.7 1.0 0.3 0.0 0.0 0.3 1.3
Petr Cornelie 13 2.9 33.3 12.5 75.0 0.5 0.5 1.1 0.2 0.3 0.1 0.1 0.5 1.1
Carlik Jones 2 2.0 50.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 1.0
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