Nuggets’ Nikola Jokic perfect from the field, matches Wilt Chamberlain’s triple-double feat

Nuggets’ Nikola Jokic perfect from the field, matches Wilt Chamberlain’s triple-double feat


Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic had a game to remember on Thursday against the Memphis Grizzlies. 

The two-time MVP was essentially “perfect,” shooting 11-11 from the field and 3-3 from the free-throw line as he finished the night with 26 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists. 

Nikola Jokic, #15 of the Denver Nuggets, looks on during the game on December 28, 2023, at the Ball Arena in Denver, Colorado.  (Bart Young/NBAE via Getty Images)

It was the 116th regular-season triple-double for Jokic and the third of his career where he was 100% from the field, matching Wilt Chamberlain, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. 

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The only blemishes on his stat line were the three turnovers for Jokic, who didn’t miss from the field one game after going 18-18 from the free-throw line against the Golden State Warriors

“I’ve never seen a triple-double before I played with him, and now I see them all the time,” said second-year player Peyton Watson.

Nuggets guard Jamal Murray was also spectacular in the 142-105 Denver win, shooting 9-12 from the field and finishing the night with 23 points. 

Jamal Murray and Nikola Jokic talk on the bench

Jamal Murray (27) jokes with Nikola Jokic (15) of the Denver Nuggets during the second quarter against the Memphis Grizzlies at Ball Arena in Denver on Thursday, December 28, 2023.  (AAron Ontiveroz/The Denver Post)

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“Jamal and Nikola were a combined 20 for 23 tonight, which is incredible,” coach Michael Malone said, according to The Denver Post. “I don’t know how many MVPs you could say this about, but Nikola doesn’t care about, ‘How many shots he’s getting.’

“He was 11 for 11 tonight. He doesn’t care about that. If Jamal has got it going, he’s clapping for Jamal. He takes more joy in his teammates’ success (than his own), and that’s the true definition of being selfless. And he lives it every day.”

The Grizzlies were without the services of star guard Ja Morant, who missed the game in Denver due to an illness. Morant recently returned from a 25-game suspension after a second incident where he appeared to flash a gun on social media. 

Michael Malone watches his team

Denver Nuggets head coach Michael Malone watches the action against the Memphis Grizzlies during the first quarter at Ball Arena in Denver on Thursday, December 28, 2023.  (AAron Ontiveroz/The Denver Post)

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“Obviously they’re much different team with Ja Morant, so we caught a break with him being out tonight,” Malone said. “That team was playing great basketball. I was proud of our guys, once we learned about Ja not playing right before tip-off, our guys handled their business.”

The loss snapped a four-game winning streak for Memphis, who now sit at 10-20 on the year. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.



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