NUGGETS

Nikola Jokic going alone, Jamal Murray still not an All-Star

Feb 1, 2024, 5:10 PM

Nikola Jokic is the lone MVP to never have a teammate selected to All-Star, All-NBA or All-Defensive team—and that didn’t change on Thursday.

The NBA announced their All-Star reserves for the 2024 game later this month in Indianapolis and no other Denver Nuggets were named. This means Jokic, as of now, is the lone representative from the reigning champions headed to the event. Nor coaches, young players or skills competitors are scheduled to goto the exhibition presently.

Last year, the entire Nuggets staff coached the game due to them leading the west at the time—that won’t happen this year even if Denver jumps in the standings because league rules won’t allow the same team’s staff to coach the game two years in a row. Even two years ago Bones Hyland made the Rising Stars game but Peyton Watson didn’t get that nod this season.

Perhaps the best case was Jokic’s co-star Jamal Murray but it wasn’t hard to find five guards having better seasons than the Blue Arrow, thanks in part to him missing a month due to injury. The Nuggets third, fourth and fifth pieces—Aaron Gordon, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Michael Porter Jr.— which make for the best starting lineup in the sport also didn’t get the nod. Even though all five are great in their roles and led the Nuggets to their first-ever title months ago, their numbers aren’t as strong as some lesser team’s first options.

Representing the West is Jokic, LeBron James, Luka Doncic, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Kevin Durant in the starting lineup. Behind that are Kawhi Leonard, Anthony Davis, Devin Booker, Anthony Edwards, Stephen Curry, Paul George and Karl-Anthony Towns.

Looking strictly at the backcourt where Murray could’ve earned a nod. SGA is the NBA’s leader in the win shares—Doncic is second among guards in the West and is scoring the most points per contest in the NBA among players who have appeared in at least 40 games. Beyond the obvious starters the West’s next best according to win shares are James Harden, Devin Booker, Fred VanVleet, Mike Conley, Anthony Edwards, Stephen Curry, Collin Sexton and De’Aaron Fox. Murray is 10th in that stat among the group and 58th overall in the league. Murray is 18 overall in assists per game and fifth among guards in the West, his scoring 40th overall in points per game and seventh among guards in the West.

Should there maybe me an extra bump to put Murray in the game based off his performance in the playoffs last year and the fact he’s had more memorable moments than many getting the honor? Probably, he and Jokic are the lone two players in NBA history with 30-point triple-doubles in the same contest, let alone in the Finals. But Murray isn’t close enough to the pack of five for that nudge to matter.

At any rate, Murray—the lone player in NBA history to have to prove it now in the regular season—will have extra motivation to finish this campaign and start the postseason. Many of the people named in front of Murray will be Nuggets playoff foes and for Murray, he’ll see a bunch of these players in the Olympics as well.

By season’s end, Jokic may very well be a three-time MVP with a Finals MVP to his name and at least one championship—but he’ll still have never had a “star” teammate.

Nuggets

Nikola Jokic #15 of the Denver Nuggets pts up a shot against Anthony Davis #3 of the Los Angeles La...

Jake Shapiro

Gru’s Your Daddy: Nikola Jokic makes the Lakers his Minions again

Nikola Jokic, played the hero of Gru for the Denver Nuggets again as he villainized the Los Angeles Lakers for a ninth-straight victory

13 hours ago

Aaron Gordon, Anthony Davis, Nuggets, Lakers...

Jake Shapiro

Nuggets use massive run to topple scrappy Lakers in Game 1

It was another back-and-forth game between the Los Angeles Lakers and Denver Nuggets, but the Mile High City crew pulled away to win Game 1

16 hours ago

Nikola Jokic trailer...

Will Petersen

Nikola Jokic is a star in hilarious movie trailer for “Despicable Me 4”

Nuggets center Nikola Jokic is becoming more comfortable being an NBA star, and a new movie trailer that dropped on Saturday is hilarious

23 hours ago

Coban Porter...

Jake Shapiro

MPJ testifies as Coban Porter gets max sentence for fatal crash

Coban Porter, a younger brother of Michael Porter Jr., was sentenced to six years in prison Friday for killing a woman in a drunken car crash

2 days ago

Michael Porter Jr. #1 of the Denver Nuggets waves to fans during the Denver Nuggets victory parade ...

Jake Shapiro

Nuggets watched play-in game together, sharing Serbian liquor

The Denver Nuggets are absolutely locked in but Nikola Jokic knows being focused can mean reflection and bonding as well, enjoying rakija

4 days ago

LeBron James #6 of the Los Angeles Lakers drives to the basket against Nikola Jokic #15 and Jamal M...

Jake Shapiro

How the Nuggets beat LeBron and the Lakers again in the playoffs

The Denver Nuggets path to repeat starts with a heavyweight bout against the longtime rival Los Angeles Lakers, this is how the teams matchup

4 days ago

Nikola Jokic going alone, Jamal Murray still not an All-Star