At one point, L.A. center Dwight Howard levied some trash talk at Nuggets All-Star big man Nikola Jokic.
However, Howard revealed that he has nothing but respect for the Serbian native.
“I like him a lot,” Howard said. “He plays under control, doesn’t let anybody rush him, he gets to his spots, he makes plays for his teammates. He rebounds. He does a little bit of everything. He’s a complete player. I love playing against him.”
Jokic has played like a superstar in the making so far in the 2020 NBA Playoffs, and he continued to do so in Game 3 with 22 points, 10 rebounds and five assists.
Howard, who has been a spark plug all season off the Laker bench, only had one rebound in 14 minutes of playing time.
The Atlanta, Ga. native says that he wants Jokic to feel his presence throughout the series.
“For me, as soon as I step onto the court, I want to let him know that I’m there,” Howard said. “We’re staying at the same hotel; I might just meet him outside his room, let him know for the rest of the series, I’m going to be locked on to you. It’s not nothing bad, just competitive spirit inside of me.”
Howard and the Lakers can go up 3-1 when the series resumes on Thursday.