Yesterday, LeBron James made the very modest statement that he doesn’t believe an MVP award is in the cards for him or Dwyane Wade this season.
But he’s wrong.
LeBron has gotten used to running away with the MVP award as he’s consistently recorded nearly 30 points per game while single-handedly carrying a Cleveland Cavaliers team that had a serious lack of talent in recent seasons.
Now that he’s on the Heat, LeBron’s scoring has tumbled to just 24.4 points per game. A low number for him, but still very much a number that merits MVP consideration.
There’s a possibility that voters will hold LeBron to an unfairly high standard because he took the “easy way out” by joining Wade and Chris Bosh in Miami, but the fact remains that the Heat have the NBA’s fourth-best record without a decent point guard or a solid interior presence.
The Heat could very well finish with the best record in the league, in no small part to LeBron’s contributions. He’s playing strong defence as always, he has been shooting the ball much better, and he has begun to learn how to play with Wade and Bosh. Plus, his scoring has slowly begun to creep up as he averaged 25.2 points per game in December, an improvement over 24.6 in November and 20.5 in October.
It also helps that there isn’t a clear cut MVP favourite at this point. Derrick Rose, Dwight Howard, Dirk Nowitzki, Kobe Bryant, and Kevin Durant can all make cases. But Bryant and Durant, the usual favourites, have seen their numbers drop.
Not to the extent of LeBron’s, but everyone knew that would happen as he was forced to share the ball more with a better Heat squad. Without a clear cut MVP favourite, LeBron is as solid a choice as anyone, especially if the Heat continue to cruise through the regular season.
We just hope it won’t go to his head.
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