For most of the 2022-23 season, many people have said that Nikola Jokic of the Denver Nuggets might do something that few NBA players ever have: he could win MVP for the third year in a row.
This isn’t surprising when you look at the way that he has played.
Not only has he led his team in nearly every game, but he’s also helped power them to the top of the standings in the Western Conference.
Pick a center:
33.6 PPG 25.1 PPG
10.0 RPG 10.9 RPG
4.2 APG 9.9 APG
1.7 BPG 0.6 BPG
53.4 FG% 62.9 FG% pic.twitter.com/PId0pIwIEp
— StatMuse (@statmuse) January 31, 2023
However, he has tough competition for the best big man in the league.
When you look at the numbers, he and Joel Embiid of the Philadelphia 76ers are neck-and-neck.
Jokic is averaging 25.1 points per game while Embiid is scoring 33.6.
Meanwhile, Jokic is producing 10.9 rebounds while Embiid is doing 10 and Jokic is scoring 9.9 assists a game while Embiid is making 4.2.
These players are very similar in many ways yet far fewer people are discussing Embiid as a possible MVP winner.
Jokic’s team has surged mostly because of him but so has Embiid’s: they are now the third-best team in the East with a 32-17 record.
It is true that Jokic is far superior when it comes to passing – few people in the league are better than him – but Embiid should easily be in the conversation about Most Valuable Player.
If Embiid misses out on the trophy this year, it won’t be the first time.
In fact, he has been named runner-up for MVP for the last two seasons so he has gotten used to not being awarded the league’s biggest regular season honor.
Both Jokic and Embiid are producing incredible numbers and the league is all the better because of that.NEXT: Luka Doncic Did Everything For The Mavericks Again