Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic was on his way to another huge triple-double before his night was cut short.
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Jokic was sent off with 6:09 remaining in their 113-107 win over the Washington Wizards after messing with officials.
His frustration started just before when he tried to take over Spencer Dinwiddie, but he didn’t get the call despite having had a lot of contact. At the other end of the court, he tangled with Dinwiddie on a screen and again failed to hear the whistle, letting the officials know everything.
He was quickly assessed with two technical fouls and ejected from the game, falling just short of a monstrous triple-double and what would have been his sixth of the season, leaving the game with 28 points, 19 rebounds and nine assists.
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“Nikola can’t do that, he’s aware of that. Fourth quarter coaches, an ejection,” Nuggets head coach Michael Malone said after the game. Malone himself was frustrated by the lack of calls, slapping his hands on the scorer’s table as Jokic left the court.
“It’s just not a very smart play. We have to control our emotions better than that.”
Jokic with a Jokic-style game:
– StatMuse (@statmuse) December 14, 2021
Denver held a comfortable 81-48 lead with 6:48 left in the third quarter, before Washington overtook Bradley Beal with a 13-4 run to put the deficit below 20 points.
After Jokic was sent off, the Wizards were up to 105-95 with 3:25 to play, before the Nuggets held on to the victory.
“I couldn’t be more proud of our group,” Malone added.
Despite a busy schedule and some key injuries, the Nuggets are above .500 at 14-13, tied with the Dallas Mavericks for seventh in the Western Conference.