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Jokic Takes Control of MVP Race, Lillard Drops Out of Top Five

Damian Lillard was listed at No. 7 in the latest NBA MVP tracker from HoopsHype.

Portland Trail Blazers v Denver Nuggets Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Damian Lillard’s recent individual struggles have combined with the Portland Trail Blazers’ slide in the standings to trigger a backward move in the latest MVP tracker. On Monday, HoopsHype contributor Frank Urbina placed Lillard at No. 7 on the list—knocking Lillard off his re-occurring perch inside the top five.

Urbina highlighted that both the Blazers and Lillard are enduring a noteworthy rough patch.

After missing three games due to a hamstring issue, Damian Lillard has now been back for the Blazers’ latest three outings, though, unfortunately for Portland fans, that hasn’t changed things in the win-loss column for the team, as the Blazers have now lost five games in a row, all by a combined 19 points.

Even more concerningly for Portland is the fact that Lillard still doesn’t look like his usual borderline MVP-level self; since returning, the six-time All-Star is averaging 24.0 points and 5.0 assists on paltry shooting splits of 34.7 percent from the floor and 29.0 percent from three.

In the month of April, Lillard is averaging 22.1 points per game on 37.1 percent shooting from the field. Those numbers are significantly lower than his season-long scoring average of 28.4 points per game and his 43.4 field goal percentage.

Outside of Lillard, Nuggets center Nikola Jokic claimed the top spot in Urbina’s latest rankings. Jokic is currently averaging 26.2 points, 10.9 rebounds and 8.7 assists per game. As of Monday, the Nuggets sit in the No. 4 spot in the Western Conference with a 39-21 record.

You can read Urbina’s full MVP rankings at HoopsHype.