Nikola Jokic’s MVP season may end a few minutes earlier than his other teammates in the Nuggets on Sunday night.
With 3:52 left in the third quarter, the big man was expelled for a flagrant foul in Game 4 of the Denver-Phoenix playoff series. Jokic hit Cameron Payne in the face while trying to shoot the ball out of Payne’s hands.
Officials determined that Jokic met the blatant criteria of No. 2 and considered the contact “unnecessary and excessive.” Actions include “end, influence and follow up.”
Before learning his fate, Jokic had a head-on confrontation with Suns guard Devin Booker, who was convicted of a technical foul due to this encounter. Jokic scored 22 points and grabbed 11 rebounds before exiting.
Denver was behind 83-75 because it tried to prevent Phoenix from sweeping in the Western Conference semifinals.