By Eurohoops team/ email@example.com
Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic and Philadelphia 76ers center/forward Joel Embiid have been named the NBA Western and Eastern Conference Players of the Week, respectively, for Week 5 of the 2020-21 season (Jan. 18-24), the league announced.
Jokić wins the award for the first time this season and has now earned Western Conference Player of the Week honors seven times in his career, tying him with Alex English for the second-most in franchise history.
Jokić, 25, averaged 29.0 points, 14.7 rebounds, 6.7 assists and 1.70 steals while shooting .522 from the field and .778 from the charity stripe. He helped lead the Nuggets to a 3-0 week, including a home win over the Oklahoma City Thunder and back-to-back road wins over the Phoenix Suns on consecutive nights. The 3-0 week also moved Denver’s record over the .500 mark for the first time this season.
Jokić started the week by registering 27 points (12-21 FG’s), 12 rebounds, six assists and one steal in a home win over the Thunder, his first career game with 27+ points, 12+ rebounds and 6+ assists in 28 minutes or less. Denver then headed to Phoenix for a back-to-back where he put up a stat-line of 31 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists in 40 minutes as the Nuggets won in overtime. Jokić followed that performance up the next night with another massive game, finishing with 29 points, a career-high 22 rebounds, six assists and one steal in 42 minutes as the Nuggets prevailed in double overtime. He became one of five players all-time to record 350 points, 125 rebounds and 125 assists in the first 15 games of a season.
Jokić leads the NBA in total assists and is second in assists per game, while averaging 25.8 points, 12.0 rebounds, 9.6 assists and 1.90 steals in 35.7 minutes. He has also produced a double-double in all 16 games, becoming one of five players since 1976 to record a double-double in each of the first 16 games (Walton, Antetokounmpo, M. Malone, D. Sabonis).
Embiid averaged 37.7 points and 11.7 rebounds as the Philadelphia 76ers went 3-0.