DENVER — It took Nikola Jokic five tries until it went in.
With a little less than three minutes remaining in the first half Wednesday, John Collins was the only defender standing between Jokic and the rim. Jokic put a move on the rookie and threw up a flip shot. It went long.
He tried twice to tip in the miss. He left both short.
Jokic got his rebound again. He attempted a turnaround. Nope.
Once more, Jokic collected his own rebound. On his fifth shot of the sequence, he finally got one to go.
Jokic finished with nine points on 4-21 shooting in Denver's 110-97 loss to the lowly Atlanta Hawks on Wednesday — another inefficient night from the star big man who routinely threw up 11-16 games a season ago.
Jokic was one of the most efficient high-volume scorers in the league in 2016-17, shooting 57.8 percent. This year, he's making less than half of his shots. His field-goal percentage dropped to 47.9 percent following Wednesday's brick-filled performance.
“The ball didn’t want to go in," Jokic said afterward. "I don’t know what happened."