Stephen A. Smith Won’t Give Nikola Jokic MVP Because He’s Still White

Stephen A. Smith Won’t Give Nikola Jokic MVP Because He’s Still White

Stephen A. Smith is one of the most influential sports media personalities around.

Be it for his reaction to LeBron James rolling up on him, his intimate video with Molly Qerim or his mystery vacation partner, he is constantly trending for something.

This week, Smith appeared on 104.3 The Fan in Denver and offered some very contradictory thoughts on why Nikola Jokic is simultaneously an amazing player, but also doesn’t deserve the MVP award.

“He’s the best in the game, he’s the standard. It doesn’t get more complimentary than that,” Smith said.

So naturally, in light of that praise, Smith has Jokic finally winning his third NBA MVP award this year, right? No.

“To me, I look at [Jayson] Tatum… the Boston Celtics are the best team in basketball and he’s their best player. It’s not to take anything away from Jokic,” Smith continued.

“We know how great he is and he always has to be in the conversation and he’s in line to potentially win it. But when you see Boston and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, I don’t think that’s an argument that can be dismissed because we recognize the greatness of Jokic.”

Smith didn’t stop there, though.

“The Nuggets are not common, Jokic isn’t common. I joke that he can’t jump onto a curb and nobody can stop him,” Smith said.

“I’ve never seen anything like it, his footwork, his IQ, his skillset, he’s the best in the game. Michael Malone is a great coach and his name needs to come up more often. And I challenge anyone to find a bigger fan of Jamal Murray than me…

“Murray is great, Jokic is the best in the game, Malone is an elite coach and the organization is first class top to bottom and I think Jokic a Murray are the top tandem in basketball… when they’re both clicking the Nuggets look unbeatable.”

And yet despite all that, Smith doesn’t believe that Jokic deserves the MVP.

What could possibly be the reason?

Well, ESPN’s Kendrick Perkins explained it quite succinctly last year.

Perkins single-handedly derailed Jokic’s campaign for a third straight MVP award by suggesting that giving him the honor was racially motivated.

That steered into folks giving the MVP to Joel Embiid, who subsequently flamed out in the playoffs shortly thereafter. Jokic went on to win the championship and Finals MVP award.

Smith is now trying to keep the MVP away from Jokic for the same reason. That is the only way to explain why he would say all the things he said about Jokic, only to then turn around and not want to award him with the MVP in 2024.

Related: Adrian Wojnarowski Breaks Down Bronny’s NBA Draft Plans

Carlos Garcia

A longtime sports reporter, Carlos Garcia has written about some of the biggest and most notable athletic events of the last 5 years. He has been credentialed to cover MLS, NBA and MLB games all over the United States. His work has been published on Fox Sports, Bleacher Report, AOL and the Washington Post.
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