Who can stop Nikola Jokic from scoring a hat-trick?

It’s Wednesday, and as you know, it’s Wednesday Panzani MVP. Two weeks after our last update on this absolutely insane Michael Jordan Trophy race, we’re back with a new Top 10 update and a whole lot of changes. Let’s go!

Statistics: 30.7 points / 4.9 rebounds / 5.5 assists / 1.7 steals / 1.1 against / 50.3% shooting
Assessment: 21 wins – 23 losses

Tanker has clearly fallen out of Thunder manager Sam Presti’s vocabulary, and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander is a big reason why. SGA continues its tremendous individual campaign as Oklahoma City knocks on the play-in tournament door with a five-game winning streak and a nearly balanced record. Four extras, at least 30 points for Shai in the last seven games, a masterclass (37 points) to win a big in Philadelphia, all this with this side sly which continues to characterize him very well. If he’s behind Stephen Curry, Luka Doncic and Ja Morant in the West’s guard rankings for the next All-Star Game, there aren’t many in the NBA to have a successful season like SGA. With Josh Giddey continuing to grow alongside him, the future looks bright in OKC.

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Statistics: 23.8 points / 4.4 rebounds / 6.0 assists / 50.5% shooting
Assessment: 24 wins – 18 losses

Honor to the Kings this week! Finally, sorry to Krala and Lakers fans in particular, we’re not talking about LeBron James. No, we’re talking about De’Aaron Fox, who continued his All-Star-caliber season as Sacramento inched closer to its ultimate goal: Finding the Playoffs. Led by Fox as well as senior Domantas Sabonis (which you can find just below the highlights), the Kings are on a four-game winning streak and currently sit in the Top 4 of the Western Conference with 24 overall. Wins 18 losses. Sharp, dynamic, and above all, hyper-clutch, De’Aaron Fox deserves recognition.

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Statistics: 28.4 points / 3.9 rebounds / 4.8 assists / 1.4 steals / 48.4% shooting
Assessment: 28 wins – 17 losses

It hasn’t been an easy two weeks for Donovan Mitchell, both emotionally and physically. In this early part of January, Spida not only returned to his old Utah stomping ground, but also faced former teammate Rudy Gobert for the first time in Minnesota. The result is two defeats in the teeth (46 points) despite a great card against the Jazz. Donovan was also a little sick the past few days before suffering a groin injury during the MLK Day game against the Pelicans. What’s limiting his performance is punishing a Cleveland team that has dropped to fifth in the East after three losses in its last six games. A small logical drop for Spida in this MVP ranking.

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Statistics: 31.0 points / 11.9 rebounds / 5.3 assists / 52.4% shooting
Assessment: 29 wins – 16 losses

The fall of the Greek monster continues. Giannis Antetokounmpo, who dropped to fifth due to the Bucks’ terrible losing streak two weeks ago, is paying for his absence and performances far from his standards before joining the hospital. After going two games for ten points in five days on Jan. 12, we wondered what was wrong with Freak as he missed four of his team’s games due to knee pain. So even if Milwaukee can go without an MVP (two wins in four games), especially thanks to a very big Jrue Celebration, all of this clearly diminishes Antetokounmpo’s candidacy. We can’t rule out a strong comeback for Freak once he gets over his injury, but for now he’ll have to settle for seventh place.

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Statistics: 27.5 points / 5.7 rebounds / 7.9 assists / 1.0 steals / 46.9% shooting
Assessment: 30 wins – 13 losses

Things are going well for Ja Morant right now. The Grizzlies are riding a ten-game winning streak, the second-best record in the Western Conference and third in the league during those streaks, and Ja continues to victimize opponents. San Antonio center Jakob Poeltl was hit hard again in the last Grizzlies vs. Spurs game, where Morant quietly finished with 38 points on the clock. Then the Pacers put a monumental poster on Jalen Smith’s face in probably the craziest dunk of the year. Ja has also had such a strong start to 2023 that the NBA continues to monitor him. If he continues to impress like this with Memphis, Morant has a chance to join the Top 5 MVPs soon. Or better yet…

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Statistics: 29.7 points / 6.7 rebounds / 5.3 assists / 1.5 blocks / 55.9% shooting
Assessment: 27 wins – 16 losses

Kevin Durant and the Nets were on cloud nine. And then everything changed. Heat franchise player Jimmy Butler fell on KD’s knee on Jan. 8, and Easy Money hasn’t played a game since. Three outings for three losses shows once again how much rain and shine Durant has had in Brooklyn, but it’s a big setback for him in the MVP race above all else. Especially since he’s at risk of being gone by the All-Star Break. In further updates on this Michael Jordan Trophy race, unfortunately KD will continue to be sidelined due to that cursed sprained knee, which could open up a slot for Ja Morant, for example, or allow him to find a Top 5 spot if Giannis returns.

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Statistics: 33.6 points / 9.8 rebounds / 4.2 assists / 1.7 against / 1.0 steals / 53.6% shooting
Assessment: 28 wins – 16 losses

While some have fallen, others continue to climb in the MVP race. That’s the case with Joel Embiid, who entered the rankings at No. 4 after a very dirty week. After three games on the road in early January, Jojo came back with a bang: 34 points and 10 rebounds on 56% shooting, including 41% 3-pointers and 86% free throws, all to lead the Sixers. four wins in last five games. Not forgetting his 41-point explosion against the Clippers yesterday, we can highlight the guy’s clutch actions in the lot that allowed his team to win by a small margin against the Lakers and Utah. At the time of this lineup, Philadelphia is on the East podium thanks to the collapse of Brooklyn and Cleveland, and Embiid is closing in on the MVP.

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Statistics: 33.8 points / 9.0 rebounds / 8.8 assists / 1.6 steals / 49.8% shooting
Assessment: 24 wins – 21 losses

Two weeks ago, Luka Doncic moved into second place in MVP after a historic two weeks and looked closer to third place. But for ten days, the Slovenian prodigy has taken the lead on the wing: he missed two of the last five games of his team due to ankle pain, four losses in five games were for Dallas (the only win for the Lakers, with a good clutch Luke), and the last trip against Portland was simply his representing his worst scoring performance of the season (15 points total). Is Luka Doncic paying the price for his superhuman efforts thus far to bring a limited Dallas team into positive balance? It’s quite possible, and that’s probably why you’ll find murals of Doncic on the walls of Dallas… to ask for support.

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Statistics: 31.1 points / 8.3 rebounds / 4.3 assists / 1.0 steals / 47.1% shooting
Assessment: 33 wins – 12 losses

Jayson Tatum and the Celtics started 2023 with two losses, but since then Boston’s steamroller has clearly revived despite Jaylen Brown in the hospital. Seven straight wins since Jan. 5, a sense of dominance that sometimes really scares you, with Tatum in MVP mode in the middle of it all: 32.9 points, 9.3 rebounds, 5.6 assists over the course and, as a bonus, Luke Doncic lands his first triple-double this season and a 51-walk blast against the Hornets on MLK Day. It’s Tatum’s fifth career 50-game streak, one more than Larry Bird. himself. When you surpass Larry Legend in Celtics history and set a new record for a storied franchise like Boston, you’re pretty good at the beautiful sport of basketball.

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Statistics: 25.0 points / 11.0 rebounds / 9.8 assists / 1.4 steals / 62.7% shooting
Assessment: 31 wins – 13 losses

Despite Jayson Tatum’s great success, if Denver doesn’t lose a game and Joker starts producing game-winners (like Sunday against Orlando) or triple-doubles in 13/14, Nikola Jokic will be hard to move. shooting (36 points, 12 rebounds, 10 assists against Portland yesterday). The Joker, like the Nuggets, who are on a seven-game winning streak and currently lead the Western Conference, is very easy right now. To put Jokic’s greatness into some perspective, he has tied Magic Johnson and Larry Bird for career 30-point triple-doubles (17) and is close to approaching Wilt Chamberlain’s record for most 30-point triple-doubles. turnovers in a season (5 for Jokic, 6 for Wilt). Fair. Too many. Strong.

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Honorary titles: LeBron James (Lakers), Jalen Brunson and Julius Randle (Knicks), Domantas Sabonis (Kings), Jaylen Brown (Celtics), Zion Williamson (Pelicans), Damian Lillard (Blazers), Stephen Curry (Warriors), Lauri Markkanen (Jazz) , Tyrese Haliburton (Pacers).

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