With the NBA playoffs in full swing, it’s that time again to decide who the NBA Most Valuable Player is. This year four players are battling for the top prize. Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook, Houston Rockets James Harden, San Antonio Spurs Kawhi Leonard and Cleveland Cavaliers LeBron James.
Each of the stars had remarkable season, but each player has their case of the matter, but none more than Westbrook and Harden.
Westbrook had one of the most remarkable seasons that has only happened once, 55-years ago. The legendary Oscar Robertson was the first player to average a triple-double in a season, making it a feat that seemed almost unbreakable, until the OKC star began his campaign as the Thunder’s lone superstar. On a comeback victory against the Denver Nuggets, Westbrook record his 42 triple-double, which broke Robertson’s record. Russ nailed a buzzer-beating three-pointer.
Make no mistake, the triple-double flurry this season certainly helped Russell Westbrook’s MVP cause with plenty of voters, but he’d already built a compelling case regardless. The averages of the potential MVP are 31.9 points per game, 10.4 assists per game and 10.7 rebounds per game.
Harden had a remarkable season as well. Averaging 29.3 points per game, 11.3 assists per game and 8.1 rebounds per game.
Despite the differences in stats, Harden believes he should win the award.
Harden feels that it shouldn’t just be stats that are factored into the MVP voting, but wins should count as well.
If adding wins into the voting, and not just stats, Harden would be your winner of the MVP award. Houston finished the regular season with 55 wins compared to OKC’s 47. In my opinion, Harden brings up a good point. Although with the stats being one-sided, wins should be taken into account as well.
During this 82-game season, I’ve noticed during some of OKC’s games, that some centers and power-forwards of the Thunder would move out of the way for Westbrook to pad his stats.
Harden and the Rockets worked together as a team to reach the number three seed in the Western Conference playoffs compared to the Thunder’s sixth seed placing. Ironically enough as well, these two teams are playing in the first round of the playoffs. I see Harden and the Rockets taking it in five games due to the strength that Houston has compared to OKC.
I feel that instead of solely voting on offensive performance, vote on overall performance of the entire team as well.
Look at it this way. On one hand, you have Westbrook, who brought the NBA world a Robertson, triple-double sequel. But then look at the whole team in general, you have 47 wins, the 17th-ranked offense in the NBA and in my opinion, zero chance of winning the NBA title. And then look at Harden, yes his stats, as stated already aren’t as good as Westbrook’s, but look at the overall situation, 55 wins, second-ranked offense and a puncher’s chance of winning the title.
Now I’m no professional sports reporter, but I think that despite the difference in stats, Harden should be awarded the NBA MVP.