Pop praises Jokic, compares him to Larry Bird, Moses Malone
Bart Young / National Basketball Association / Getty

San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich had some high praise for Denver Nuggets center Nikola Jokic after the Nuggets beat the Spurs on Wednesday.

"He's like a reincarnation of Larry Bird," Popovich said, according to ESPN's Ohm Youngmisuk. "He does everything. He's amazing."

Jokic scored 25 points on 11-of-17 shooting while dishing out 11 assists and grabbing four rebounds. Popovich also likened the big man's inside-outside game to Hall of Fame center Moses Malone.

"He's stepping out and making threes. He's rebounding the ball," the veteran coach said. "There should be an NBA rule, you can't tap it to yourself. He's Moses Malone. You know, he's down there and he jumps about a quarter of an inch, then he taps it two or three times and then he gets it and he lays it back in.

"It's not just luck. He does it all the time. He is great on the board, he's obviously maybe the best big man passer in the league. If not, then close to it. He's a pretty special player."

Popovich's praise could result in a tampering fine by the NBA. Los Angeles Clippers coach Doc Rivers was fined last year for comparing Kawhi Leonard to Michael Jordan, although that came amid a well-publicized and ultimately successful free-agency pursuit of Leonard.

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Pop praises Jokic, compares him to Larry Bird, Moses Malone
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