NBA MVP

The MVP race has long to go, but it’s looking like it’s going to be close at the top. NBA.com has posted their “power rankings” for the MVP race, and I have some things to say about their predictions.

NBA.com’s Predictions

  1. Russell Westbrook
  2. James Harden
  3. Kevin Durant
  4. Lebron James
  5. Kawhi Leonard
  6. Stephen Curry
  7. Jimmy Butler
  8. Kemba Walker
  9. Anthony Davis
  10. Giannis Antetokounmpo

My Thoughts

  1. If you don’t already know how I feel about Russell Westbrook, just go back and read my first post, and my previous post. He’s an animal, but I don’t think he’ll win the MVP award.  The reason for this is that the Thunder are currently sitting in 6th place in the Western Conference. The last player to win the NBA MVP who’s team did not finish in 1st or 2nd in their conference was Michael Jordan, and the Bulls finished in 3rd. I think that Westbrook is performing at a level that is MVP-caliber, but the MVP means most valuable player, and you can not be the most valuable player if your team is fighting for a playoff spot.
  2. The Rockets are the 4th seed in the West, so slightly better than the Thunder, but Westbrook is still putting up better numbers than Harden so if it’s between Harden and Westbrook, Russ gets it every time in my book.
  3. Here’s where things get interesting. Kevin Durant is amazing at basketball. There is no question about that. He’s putting up numbers that are slightly inferior to that of Westbrook and Harden, but he’s playing on the Golden State Warriors, who have the best record in the league (20-3). He has everything that an MVP candidate needs. My issue is that he is playing alongside 3 other Allstars. This will likely hurt his likelihood of being voted the NBA MVP because we may see a lot of “He’s only putting up those numbers alongside that record because of his surrounding cast.”
  4. King James, what more can I say? I think they’ve put him too low on this list. He’s the best player on the best team in the East, who…if anyone has forgotten, WON THE NBA CHAMPIONSHIP LAST YEAR.
  5. Kawhi Leonard is a valuable player undoubtedly, but he’s not an exciting player. He doesn’t get a lot of hype because he is on potentially the most boring franchise in NBA history. The Spurs are phenomenal and may be the best NBA franchise of the 21st century, but nobody (other than Spurs fans) really cares about them because they’ve been so annoyingly consistently good over the past 16 years. Leonard is great, but he’s not putting up the numbers that Durant is, and Leonard is surrounded by a team that is almost as strong as the Warriors, but slightly more well rounded (Aldridge, Gasol, Parker, Ginobili, Mills).
  6. The reigning MVP of the league and the player that has had the most hype around him for the past 2 seasons. Curry lead the Warriors to a title 2 seasons ago and the best record in NBA history last year, but he won’t win the MVP. The last person to win 3 straight NBA MVP awards was Larry Bird (1983-86). Since then Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Tim Duncan, and Steve Nash have won the MVP award twice in a row. For Curry to win, it would mean that his season would have to be more impressive than the seasons of Johnson, Jordan, Duncan, and Nash, which I can assure you it won’t be.
  7. Butler won’t get it. He’s on a middle-seeded playoff team in the weak Eastern Conference. Give him and the Bulls a few seasons and we’ll see what happens, but for now leave the MVP race to the big boys.
  8.  If Kemba Walker wins the NBA MVP I’ll eat my shoe while streaking down the middle of the Spectrum Center.
  9.  Anthony Davis will win the MVP in the next 3 seasons. He’s the next superstar of the NBA  and will surely leave the Pelicans after his contract comes to an end. He’ll go to a title contender and the league will never be the same. No player on a 13 seeded team will ever win the MVP award.
  10. “Greek Freak” is an exciting player but he’s still developing. In 5 to 6 years he’ll be higher up on this list.

My Rankings

  1. Lebron James
  2. Kevin Durant
  3. Russell Westbrook
  4. James Harden
  5. Stephen Curry
  6. Kawhi Leonard
  7. Damian Lillard
  8. Kyrie Irving
  9. Anthony Davis
  10. Karl-Anthony Towns

 

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