According to Shams Charania of Stadium and The Athletic, Denver Nuggets star Nikola Joki will miss his team’s home game against the New York Knicks on Wednesday after he entered the NBA’s health and safety protocols.
Joki was held out of the Oct. 7 preseason game for the Nuggets because of a wrist injury. Two-time NBA MVP Stephen Curry had an MRI on the same day his head coach, Michael Malone, told reporters that the scan “showed nothing sinister.”
Normal season durability has never been an issue for Joki. He has missed a total of only 28 games over his first seven seasons, despite playing in at least 72 games in each of those seasons.
Denver will have high hopes for the 2022-23 season. Despite missing the entire season due to Jamal Murray’s ACL injury recovery and having Michael Porter Jr. for only nine games due to a back injury, Joki carried the team to the playoffs as the No. 6 seed in the Western Conference.
The Nuggets earned the third seed in the Western Conference the last time all three players were active together, the 2020-21 season.
Joki is the engine that powers Denver’s every move, especially on offense. The 27-year-old has started 146 games over the last two years, averaging 26.7 points, 12.3 rebounds, and 8.1 assists per contest.
The Nuggets’ potential is greatly diminished if Joki is out for an extended period of time. For the time being, they could use DeAndre Jordan, a veteran, as their primary starting center.
Knicks And Nuggets Injury Reports
On Tuesday, both the New York Knicks and the Denver Nuggets released their respective injury reports for Wednesday’s game.
There will be a matchup between the New York Knicks and the Denver Nuggets in Colorado on Wednesday night.
Both teams have reported no new injuries as of 3:30 p.m. Eastern time.
The Knicks aren’t going to be using Mitchell Robinson, Trevor Keels, or Feron Hunt.
Because of his right knee injury, Robinson has missed the last six games.
Collin Gillespie and Nikola Jokic are out for the season for the Nuggets, and Ish Smith’s status is unknown at this time.
Neither Aaron Gordon nor Bones Hyland has been ruled out for the game.
Jokic is the best player on the team and has won the MVP award in consecutive years, so playing without him will be difficult.
He was selected in the second round of the draft and is currently averaging 20.8 points, 9.5 rebounds, and 8.9 assists per game.
In addition to scoring and rebounding, he also averages the most assists per game.
The Nuggets have a 9-4 record after 13 games, good enough for the second seed in the Western Conference.
They’re only a half-game behind the Portland Trail Blazers and first place, thanks to Damian Lillard and company.
Tonight marks their fifth home game of the season, and they’re undefeated at 4-0 thus far in Colorado.
The Knicks are playing on the second night of a back-to-back.
They improved to 7-7 after 14 games by beating the Utah Jazz (in Salt Lake City) by a score of 118-111.
They have played seven away games and have a 3-4 record, putting them in the seventh spot in the Eastern Conference.
New York Knicks vs Denver Nuggets Prediction
After last night’s arduous victory in Utah, a trip to Denver for the second game in as many days will not be without its challenges. With Jokic out of the lineup, however,
the Nuggets will have a difficult time filling the enormous offensive void that has been created. It also means that the Nuggets will have to either play small for the majority of the game or heavily feature DeAndre Jordan at the center.
The latter scenario is more likely, giving the Knicks an edge thanks to their possession of versatile big men like Randle and Toppin.
Denver ranks fourth in the league in scoring, but last in defense, allowing 20 points per game. Like the Knicks’ game against the Celtics earlier this month,
which was also the Knicks’ second game of a back-to-back, I anticipate a high-scoring affair. It’s a big call, but I think the Knicks will win in Denver for the first time since 2006.
New York Knicks
- Mitchell Robinson – Out, ankle
- Nerlens Noel – Out, ankle
- Zeke Nnaji – Out, ankle
- Jamal Murray – Out for the season, knee
- Will Barton – Out, hamstring
- PJ Dozier – Out, right adductor strain
- Monte Morris – Out, hamstring
- Nikola Jokic – Probable, right toe soreness
It’s not an exaggeration to say that the New York Knicks’ immediate future hinges on this road trip. After a devastating defeat to the Oklahoma City Thunder, many fans were ready to fire Thibodeau.
His seat has been cooled somewhat by the victory in Utah, but a loss in Denver, where two-time MVP Nikola Jokic is subject to health and safety protocols, would have it sizzling like the inside of a pizza roll.
Following a 126-103 victory over the Chicago Bulls on Sunday, Denver enters this game with a 9-4 record. After a long offseason layoff, Nikola Jokic will not be available for the first game of the season for the Nuggets, who should be well-rested.
Jamal Murray and Michael Porter Jr., both of whom are returning from significant offseason injuries, will be counted on to carry the offensive load.
When it comes to scoring and ball movement, Denver is a team that can’t be matched. As the second game of a back-to-back, the Knicks will need to be disciplined on defense to prevent easy points for a very good opponent. It would also help if Julius Randle had a good game.
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