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Nikola Jokic: ‘I would love to play my whole career in Denver’

Nikola Jokic's performance so far during the first round series against the Trail Blazers has been nothing short of brilliant, serving merely as a coronation for his MVP campaign, say Michael Smith and Michael Holley.

Nikola Jokic has two years left on his max contract, at which point he would become a free agent in the summer of 2023. At that point, every team in the league would be willing to offer the soon-to-be MVP his next max contract, he could play anywhere.

Jokic wants to play in Denver. He wants to be the Tim Duncan of the Nuggets, he said in an interview taped before this season that aired for the first time yesterday.

The Nuggets would love Jokic to spend his entire career in Denver and have anywhere near the five-championship success of the Hall of Famer Duncan.

Denver has built a potential contender with Jokic as the hub of its offense (although Jamal Murray’s ACL injury delayed that goal), helped him win MVP (it’s not official yet, but just wait), and can offer a larger contract than any other team. Nobody around the league expects Jokic to bolt in 2023, but he will have the option.

Before the best season of his career — where he averaged 26.4points, 10.8 rebounds, and 8.3 assists a game — Jokic said he didn’t want to play anywhere else. That almost certainly has not changed now. Long term, the pressure on Denver is to keep a winning roster around Jokic, but the man sounds loyal.