Is Nikola Jokic playing tonight (Mar. 30) against Pelicans?

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Nuggets Is Nikola Jokic playing tonight (March 30) against Pelicans?

Nikola Jokic (calf) of the Denver Nuggets is listed as questionable for Thursday night’s home game versus the New Orleans Pelicans. The five-time All-Star has only missed eight games so far this season. Since playoff seeding matters for all teams, Joker should think about playing.

Although the Nuggets (51-24), Grizzlies (48-28), and Sacramento Kings (46-30) have all clinched a playoff berth, Denver remains just 3.5 games ahead of the second-seeded Grizzlies in the Western Conference standings. Every game is important, especially considering the Pelicans are aiming to avoid the play-in tournament.

Per multiple NBA betting sites, Nikola Jokic is now the favorite to win his third straight MVP award. Sportsbooks show Joel Embiid with second-shortest odds, followed by Giannis Antetokounmpo.

Through 67 starts this season, Nikola Jokic is averaging 24.9 points, 11.9 rebounds, a career-high 9.9 assists, 1.2 steals, and 33.9 minutes per game. The four-time All-NBA member is also shooting a career-best 63.4% from the floor.

In Denver’s 141-128 win over the Washington Wizards on Dec. 14, the center scored a season-high 43 points in 34 minutes of action. Along with logging 14 boards, eight dimes, five steals, and one block, Jokic shot 17-of-20 (85%) from the field and 9-of-10 (90%) at the foul line.

Nuggets center Nikola Jokic (center) is questionable against Pelicans for Thursday night’s home game

Other players listed on the Nuggets’ injury report include Vlatko Cancar (ankle) and Peyton Watson (illness). Both Cancar and Watson are questionable for this Western Conference showdown. While Collin Gillespie (leg) remains out indefinitely, Jack White (quarantine) was also downgraded to out.

Additionally, for the Pelicans’ injury report, Zion Williamson (hamstring), Jose Alvarado (tibia), and E.J. Liddell (knee) remain out indefinitely. New Orleans’ five-game win streak was snapped in Tuesday night’s 120-109 loss to the Golden State Warriors. Although the Pels are worse without Williamson, the same could be said about Denver minus Nikola Jokic.

The Pelicans are now 6-4 in their last 10 games. Furthermore, New Orleans is 6-2 ATS in its past eight matchups against Denver on the road. The point total has gone under in seven of the Pelicans’ previous eight away meetings as well. As for the Nuggets, they’re 17-3 in their past 20 home games. Denver is 14-4 in its last 18 encounters versus Western Conference opponents.

Referring to ESPN’s Basketball Power Index, the Nuggets have a 69.6% chance of defeating New Orleans. Sportsbooks show Denver as a 5.5-point favorite at home. These odds will likely change if Nikola Jokic gets downgraded to out on the injury report.

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