Stunning Roger Federer in the semi-finals to reach his first Masters 1000 final, BornaCoric knew it would be an uphill task to defeat an inform Djokovic.
The 14-time Grand Slam victor spoke to Xinhua in an exclusive interview after the match, saying that the last three or four months have been "phenomenal", and his family has helped him to overcome adversity after the lackluster start to the season.
He had his first sniff of an opportunity with a break point in the sixth game of the second set, but second seed Djokovic survived when Coric again fired wide.
Spanish great Nadal, who was not in Shanghai or Beijing last week because of a knee injury, will be just 215 points ahead of Djokovic in the race to finish as year-end number one. Now back to winning form, Djokovic has not lost a match since Toronto in August and lifted four trophies at Wimbledon, Cincinnati, the US Open and now in Shanghai.
Previewing the final, Djokovic said: "We can not underestimate Borna". "This was definitely one of the best service weeks that I've had in my career", Djokovic, who did not drop his serve during the tournament, said. The last four months had been "fantastic" and "tremendous", he said.
A furious pace was established early in the first set and Coric, having initially matched his opponent stride for stride, soon found the going tough. "Not many holes in the game in general, especially this week." he added.
"I found it and I'm just trying to hold on to it as long as I can". That's was I think is the best for me.
Federer has not been at his best all week, dropping sets in the two opening matches of his wobbly title defence. I think since I was a kid I was always paying attention to the practice court.
Djokovic said he could play Vienna or Basel, the week before Paris, in an effort to further rein in his rankings rival.