Jokic suffered a hip injury last season and played 73 games, although he was durable in 2015-16 and appeared in 80 contests as a productive piece of Denver's rotation.
He averaged 10.0 points and 7.0 rebounds a night while shooting 51.2 percent from the field in his first season but made a leap as a double-double threat in 2016-17. He posted 16.7 points, 9.8 rebounds and 4.9 assists a night while shooting 57.8 percent from the field as one of the league's blossoming stars.
He has followed up by averaging 15.9 points, 11.0 rebounds, 4.6 assists and 1.5 steals this season.
Denver will likely turn toward Mason Plumlee and Juan Hernangomez to play the majority of the vacated minutes until Jokic can return with Paul Millsap sidelined after wrist surgery.
It can also rely on the combination Kenneth Faried and Wilson Chandler in the frontcourt, although Chandler is more of an athletic forward who poses mismatch problems for opposing defenses than someone who dominates the paint.
Jokic is a primary reason the Nuggets appeared to be a playoff contender entering the season. They need him back and healthy if they want to challenge the best teams in the Western Conference.