To this hater, LeBron is undeniably the MVP
MANILA, Philippines -- There are only two things the Miami Heat organization is preparing as of this moment. First, hosting the Chicago Bulls for their Eastern Conference Semifinals Playoff Series and second, crowning LeBron James as this season’s Most Valuable Player.
Whereas the Bulls barging into the second round may have surprised a number of hoop nuts, it’s pretty clear James is the apparent choice for MVP.
Even before it was officially announced, NBA beat writers from all over the web have written truckloads about it, dissected LeBron's season and looked at every bit and piece of what has been a historic campaign for the Ohio native.
Frankly, is there really anyone else more deserving?
Kevin Durant? Carmelo Anthony? Despite their growth as players and leaders, their games are still too offensively-skewed.
Kobe Bryant? His Lakers nearly missed the playoffs (or barely made it, depending on your perspective).
Chris Paul? He is off to go fishing after a premature postseason exit.
James Harden? Too much facial hair.
The only other guy whom some members of the NBA Press Corps MAYBE could vote for is Tim Duncan, but, considering how he scored under 18 points per game and how the Spurs lost the West’s top seed late in the season, he’s a hard sell, too.
The fact of the matter is the best player on the league’s best team is the no-brainer choice for this season’s MVP.
Just look at the following milestones:
• James’s per game stats: nearly 27 points, exactly 8 rebounds, a little more than 7 assists, and a little under 2 steals.
• He made about 57% of his field goals, which is second only to Dwight Howard among guys who had at least 10 attempts per game. This he did despite attempting the fifth-most number of shots overall.
• He led the league in total field goals made.
• Among the league’s small forwards, he was tops in assists and rebounds. Heck, he averages a near-triple-double for God’s sake!
• He shot a career-high 41% from three-point land this season.
• He led the Miami Heat to a season-high, franchise-high, and all-time conference-high 27-game winning streak. Only the Lakers of ’71-’72 were better.
• Miami finished atop the East and, eventually, atop the entire league by season’s end. This despite the up-and-down season of Dwyane Wade. Again, a testament to how James just carried the Heat throughout the year.
In terms of body of work, no one holds a candle to the King.
And he will receive his fourth MVP trophy because of it. He joins a stellar and select cast of players who’ve been named MVP four times or more – Walt Chamberlain, Bill Russell, and Michael Jordan each won the award four times, while Kareem Abdul-Jabbar nailed it six times.
And the scary thing is James has a good chance of copping at least a couple more down the road.
Of course, that’s all gravy compared to what he’s really after, the crowning jewel to an outstanding season – his second NBA title and FIRST in a full, 82-game season.
Nothing would be sweeter, and looking at how the rest of the field has thinned out – two potential contrapelos (the LA Clippers and Denver Nuggets) have already been eliminated, and the injury list is a mile long (no Amar’e Stoudemire, no Danny Granger, no Derrick Rose, no David Lee, a hobbling Manu Ginobili, etc.) – it’s pretty difficult to imagine June 2013 without Miami holding another trophy parade.
Before we all bow down in submission, however, I would just like to say that all this makes me feel queasy inside. I haven’t been a fan of LeBron since his infamous Decision in 2010. To say I dislike him (as a player) is a gross understatement.
But even I cannot deny the reality that his game has just been a few notches above the REST OF THE PLANET this past season. I’ll be rooting against him and his Heat all the way, but, for now, there’s no denying he’s on top of the proverbial hill.
You win, LeBron. I’ll let you have your day. - Rappler.com
Enzo Flojo is one of the men behind the nationally-recognized sports blog, HoopNut.com, which was short-listed for Best Sports Blog in the 2011 Philippine Blog Awards.
HoopNut.com has also just been nominated for Best Sports Blog in the 2013 Globe Tatt Awards. Enzo wouldn’t mind you liking Hoopnut.com’s Facebook page (www.facebook.com/thehoopnut), following him on Twitter (@hoopnut), and on Instagram (www.instagram.com/thehoopnut) to give his blog a decent shot at beating the competition. It’s a David versus Goliath thing, and Enzo is David. Seriously. He’s not LeBron, after all.