Nikola Jokic Sends Message on Anthony Davis After Nuggets Take Down Lakers

Lakers' Anthony Davis and Nuggets' Nikola Jokic

Getty Lakers' Anthony Davis and Nuggets' Nikola Jokic

After the Denver Nuggets beat the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals, Nikola Jokic was asked to talk about Anthony Davis.

Jokic called Davis one of the most talented players in the NBA.

“He’s really, really, really, first of all, talented,” Jokic said. “He’s a roll threat. He can play in the pocket. He can play iso. He can play on the post. So he’s really, really talented. Probably the most skilled guy if you think about the size and what he can do with the ball and how good of a shooter he is and how he’s attacking the glass. So I think probably one of the most talented players in the league.”

Davis was incredible in Game 1 for the Lakers. The eight-time All-Star had 40 points, 10 rebounds and two blocks in 42 minutes while shooting 14-of-23 from the field and 11-of-11 from the charity stripe. Unfortunately for Los Angeles, Davis’ fantastic night wasn’t enough to prevent the team from falling behind in a series for the first time in this postseason, as Denver won Game 1 by a final score of 132-126.

Anthony Davis Talks About Nikola Jokic

Jokic recorded a triple-double in Game 1. The two-time MVP finished with 34 points, 21 rebounds and 14 assists in 42 minutes while shooting 12-of-17 from the floor, 3-of-3 from 3-point land and 7-of-8 from the free-throw line.

“I mean, he’s a two-time MVP,” Davis said. “He’s very skilled, obviously as his numbers show. Made some tough shots. Just try to make it tough for him. Switching up matchups and schemes on him, but he’s been playing well through the entire season and especially in this playoffs. So you tip your hat to him.”

Jokic, who is looking to win his first championship, hit a difficult 3-pointer over Davis at the buzzer to end the third quarter and all the Lakers star could do was smile.

“I just looked at him and just smiled,” Davis said. “There’s nothing else I could have done. 40 feet away from the basket, one dribble, kind of throws it up and it goes in. So it was definitely one of them nights, but we’re encouraged about the second half of the game and things we can get better at and make some adjustments going into Game 2.”

LeBron James: ‘It Took Us a Half to Get Into the Game’

The Lakers lost Game 1 because they didn’t play well in the first half. They were outscored by the Nuggets 37-25 in the first quarter and 35-29 in the second quarter.

LeBron James told reporters postgame that it took the purple and gold “a half to get into the game.”

“It took us a half to get into the game,” James said. “And that was pretty much the ballgame right there. They punched us in the mouth to start. … I know the game is won in 48 minutes, but they set the tone in 24 minutes and we were playing catch-up for the next 24.”

The Lakers played much better in the second half, outscoring the Nuggets 38-34 in the third quarter and 34-26 in the fourth quarter. If Los Angeles wants to win Game 2 on May 18, it needs to start the game fast in the first quarter.