Nikola Jokic’s MVP season may have ended a few minutes earlier than the rest of his Nuggets teammates on Sunday night.
The big man was kicked out of Game 4 of the Denver Playoffs with Phoenix for a gross foul 2 with 3:52 left in the third quarter. Jokic punched Cameron Payne in the face while trying to snatch the ball from Payne’s hands.
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Officials determined that Jokic met the criteria for a Flagrant 2, deeming the contact “unnecessary and excessive.” The action consisted of “liquidation, impact and follow-up”.
Before learning his fate, Jokic found himself face to face with Suns goaltender Devin Booker, who received a technical foul for the game. Jokic came out after scoring 22 points and taking 11 rebounds.
Denver was trailing 83-75 at the time as it tried to avoid a Phoenix sweep attempt in the Western Conference semifinals.