Bintang NBA Nikola Jokic Tak Ingin Berkubang dalam Popularitas

I Gede Ardy Estrada

Editor: I Gede Ardy Estrada

Nikola Jokic
Pebasket Denver Nuggets Nikola Jokic. (M. Yusuf/Skor.id)

SKOR.idNikola Jokic mengaku ingin ‘menghilang’ dari hingar bingar ketenaran begitu kariernya di NBA selesai. Bintang Denver Nuggets itu mengharapkan kehidupan normal setelah pensiun.

Hal tersebut disampaikan Jokic dalam podcast rekan setimnya Michael Porter Jr., ‘Curious Mike’ baru-baru ini. Ia mengungkapkan bahwa dirinya tidak suka menarik banyak perhatian atau menjadi sorotan publik. 

“Ketika karier saya selesai, saya benar-benar berharap tidak ada yang mengenal saya. Dan, saya sangat berharap anak-anak saya akan mengingat saya sebagai seorang ayah, bukan pemain basket,” ujar Jokic.  

“Menurut saya, itulah tujuan hidup saya. Dan tidak memiliki telepon (handphone). Saya kira itu merupakan tujuan besar saya yang lain. Hanya ingin menikmati momen.”

Tentu saja kehidupan normal tersebut tidak bisa dijalani Nikola Jokic sekarang. Sang big man adalah salah satu bintang besar NBA saat ini, meski mungkin ia tidak ingin menjadi superstar.

Sebagai Pemain Terbaik (MVP) Final NBA musim lalu, Jokic tak dapat menghindari popularitas usai meraih gelar juara pertamanya bersama Nuggets. 

Pria asal Serbia ini memang kurang nyaman ada di kerumunan. Salah satu buktinya yakni saat Joker, julukan Jokic, tidak terdengar antusias soal parade juara. Ia ingin pulang karena merasa pekerjaan sudah selesai.

“Menjadi terkenal, sebagian orang menyukainya, sebagian lagi tidak. Saya benar-benar tak suka kehidupan (seperti) ini karena pada akhirnya kami hanyalah pemain basket,” ia menuturkan.

“Kami hanya pandai dalam apa yang kami lakukan. Namun media adalah sesuatu yang ada di sekitar kami, dan tentu saja, kami dibayar karena media, karena popularitas kami.”

“Rasanya menyedihkan, setiap kali Anda ke bar, restoran, atau melakukan hal lain, orang-orang langsung mengeluarkan ponsel mereka dan merekam Anda. Saya pikir itu benar-benar tidak sopan,” tambah Joker.

Popularitas tidak pernah menjadi tujuan Nikola Jokic bermain basket. Namun, ia sadar hal ini sulit dihindari ketika seorang atlet datang ke NBA dan mampu memperlihatkan kemampuannya. 

Karena itu, ia tidak akan protes jika orang-orang mengambil foto atau video dirinya. Meski begitu, ia ingin hal tersebut selesai berbarengan dengan akhir kariernya di NBA suatu hari nanti. 

“Menjadi orang normal, menikmati hidup, pergi minum bersama teman-teman atau makan siang dan bermain dengan anak-anak atau berkuda dan tak seorang pun mempermasalahkan itu,” kata Jokic soal keinginannya setelah pensiun dari NBA.

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