Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic has been named NBA Most Valuable Player for the second consecutive season.
Serbian Jokic is the 13th player to win back-to-back MVPs.
Jokic received 65 first-place votes and 875 points to outdistance Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid (26 first-place votes, 706 points). Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (nine, 595) was third.
Jokic averaged 27.1 points, 13.8 rebounds, 7.9 assists, 1.47 steals this season for the Nuggets. He led the NBA with 19 triple-doubles and became the first player in NBA history to record at least 2000 points, 1000 rebounds and 500 assists in a season.
“I don’t know what else you can say about Nikola at this point,” Denver coach Michael Malone said.
“He’s consistently improved his game, he’s consistently proven people wrong when they doubt him and he’s consistently the best player on the floor night in and night out. I’ve said it many times before, I’m extremely grateful to coach Nikola Jokic and just as grateful for the bond that we’ve built off the court in our seven years together.”
The others to win consecutive MVPs are Antetokounmpo, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Larry Bird, Wilt Chamberlain, Stephen Curry, Tim Duncan, LeBron James, Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Moses Malone, Steve Nash and Bill Russell.
Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker (216 points) and Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic (146) rounded out the top five in the voting.
The balloting consisted of a global panel of 100 sportswriters and broadcasters.