One of the best parts of this early season has been watching the basketball magic from both Luka Doncic and Nikola Jokic. Two guys that are not only in the MVP conversation but they are two of the best young studs the league has. Do people realize Jokic is only 25? Seems crazy but it's true. Well, what we are seeing from both of these guys is quickly approaching historic levels. I'm not kidding. We'll start with Jokic.
You may not be aware, but Jokic's 10.3 assists a night currently ranks 3rd in the league by average (his 134 total is the most in the league) and is one of the highest totals from a non point guard in NBA history. At first, I thought Westbrook would have done this in any of his triple-double seasons, but then I looked it up and saw he averaged just 9.2 rebounds in the first 10 games of 2016, 9.3 in the first 10 in 2017, and then missed in multiple categories to start 2018. So yeah, I'd say what Jokic is doing with his 25/11/10.3 on 57/38% splits is pretty goddamn impressive. If only the Nuggets could find a way to translate that into wins (6-7).
Then there's Luka. He started the season slow, came in a little chubby and it took some time, but he's back to being the same old Luka that tore this league up
So what history did Luka make yesterday? Oh I dunno….
Even if you are someone who thinks triple doubles are overrated, I'm pretty sure if you do anything in the NBA that passes Michael goddamn Jordan, that's impressive as hell. To do it in only your third season? That's not too shabby. Luka currenly has 29 which is good for 15th all time with Grant Hill, and he's for sure going to catch Simmons (30), John Havlicek (31), Rondo (32), and Cousy (33) later this season. Shit, probably within the next month. To put it in perspective, he had 17 triple-double last season, which means if he just repeats that he has 14 to go. That would have him tied for 10th all time with Fat Lever (43).
Just like with Jokic though, unfortunately, that production hasn't really led to wins yet for the Mavs (6-6). Once they get KP back and in shape I'm sure things will turn around for them though, their offense is too good.
So, which is more impressive? For me, it has to be what Jokic is doing. We've seen guys get 29 career triple doubles before. We basically haven't seen what the Big O did until Nikola Jokic. You add in the efficiency and the fact that he's a goddamn center, and that's the easy choice for me. Still very cool that Luka passed MJ in just 144 games compared to Jordan's 1,072, but others have done that.
Please, do yourself a favor and watch Nuggets/Mavs games. We're seeing two generational talents do their thing on a nightly basis and really only one of them gets anywhere close to the level of hype they deserve. These two are going to run the West in a post LeBron world for a long time and I promise you will not be disappointed.