Nikola Jokic reportedly becomes lowest NBA Draft pick ever to win MVP award

Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images
Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images /

Nikola Jokic has reportedly won this year’s MVP award.

It shouldn’t come as a shock to anyone, but according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania, Denver Nuggets superstar Nikola Jokic will be named the MVP of the 2020-21 NBA season.

In the process, the seven-footer will become the lowest-drafted player in NBA history to ever win MVP, the first Nuggets MVP and the first MVP to play in every single game of the regular season since Kobe Bryant back in 2008.

The previous lowest draft picks to ever win MVP were Steve Nash and Giannis Antetokounmpo, both of whom were selected with the 15th overall pick. Jokic is the only second-round selection to ever earn MVP honors, going 41st overall back in the 2014 NBA Draft.

Nikola Jokic is the NBA’s new MVP

This season for the Nuggets, the 26-year-old Serbian averaged 26.4 points, 10.8 rebounds and 8.3 assists per game, all while shooting 56.6 percent from the floor, 38.8 percent from 3-point range and 86.8 percent from the free-throw line. Despite numerous injury absences for his teammates, including Jamal Murray, the Joker led Denver to the 3-seed in the Western Conference with a 47-25 record.

The playoffs aren’t included with the voting for this regular-season award, but Jokic looked like the MVP in the first round as well, posting 31.4 points, 10.3 rebounds and 4.3 assists per game on .515/.425/.917 shooting splits in a six-game series victory over the Portland Trail Blazers.

The three-time All-Star was the pinnacle of health this season, playing in all 72 games for his team while putting up gaudy numbers left and right. He ranked 12th in the NBA in scoring, ninth in rebounding and sixth in assists, while also leading the league in Player Efficiency Rating, win shares, Box Plus/Minus and Value Over Replacement Player.

It was a historically dominant season for Jokic, who was hands down the NBA’s best player during the regular season. This award is well-deserved, and it’s particularly special for a guy who came over from the Serbian League as the 41st overall pick and grew into the league’s MVP.

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