April 11, 2006

Back to Basketball... who's the MVP?: "The winner will be announced in late April or early May. Results will be leaked a day or two before the announcement, which will be made just before the winner's team plays a home playoff game on national TV."

posted by everett to basketball at 07:59 PM - 58 comments

Not sure about this, but if something is planned to be leaked, isn't it just being announced without fanfare? Seems a leak is something that you don't plan on, you know, like a leaky faucet?

posted by elovrich at 08:03 PM on April 11, 2006

Billups' best argument is his domination of Nash. The Pistons won both meetings this season, with Billups scoring 27 and 35 to Nash's 18 and 13. I cannot agree more with that statement. Both times the Suns played the Pistons Nash was nonexistant, and the second game Billups lead the Pistons to victory. Obviously I may be slightly biased, but I think Billups deserves the award the most. It is true that the Pistons have three other All-Stars, but a big reason they made the team this year was because of Billups play. Not to mention the games he has come up big and salvaged a poor Piston effort. However, I think that Billups has never been the popular choice for the MVP award, the success of the other four Pistons started undermines his play, and that is why I think the soon to be (if not already) NBA figurehead Lebron James will win the award.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 08:08 PM on April 11, 2006

In case you are curious.... previous threads on the topic from this season are here, and here. This one was more specifically about the likelihood of Kobe getting the MVP, but I thought it was relevant too. Just to be up front about it, I linked these because I have been saying Lebron all season, and I wanted to show proof... muwahahaha... BTW elovrich, purposeful leaks happen all the time, and yes it is sort of like "it just being announced without fanfare," but it does not mean it is not still a leak.

posted by everett at 08:10 PM on April 11, 2006

In case you are curious, Maurice Podoloff. Saw the name, realized I'd never heard the NBA MVP trophy referred to in that way and had to know.

posted by yerfatma at 08:21 PM on April 11, 2006

Good call yerfatma, I never knew that either.

posted by everett at 08:24 PM on April 11, 2006

As I sit here in my Detroit Pistons 2004 NBA Championsip T-shirt, I have this warm feeling toward Chauncey and the MVP title but feel local hero Dirk Nowitski might have done a thing or two toward deserving the recognition. Ah, what do I know? My favorite T-shirt is a San Antonio Spurs 2005 NBA Championship frock ... I can't vote anyway.

posted by Bud Lang at 09:12 PM on April 11, 2006

I don't know who will be the MVP, but if it's not Steven Nash. I wasn't sure that he deserved it last year, and he definitely doesn't this year. I know, I know, he's "winning without Amare." Yes, he is the MVP of that team. The media just absolutely love him for some reason that I can't grasp. He's like the Derek Jeter of basketball. I say LeBron James should win it, although Dwayne Wade, Kobe Bryant, and pretty much any of the Pistons starting five have a decent shot. I would vote for Wade, but that's just favoritism because he's my favorite player to watch, but James probably deserves it. LeBron has pretty much been the better player all year round, has started to shaken his "can't get the big shot" reptuation, and has finally gotten his team to the playoffs.

posted by uglatto at 09:28 PM on April 11, 2006

I really dont care about anyone else but Dirk and the Mavs! I think Dirk deserves the trophy just as much as Nash or any player, he is about the best all around player there is in the league. Nash couldnt play defense if his life depended on it!!Dirk has carried the Mavs on his back for a long time, Nash has done it for one year, no contest.

posted by LonghornFaN at 09:55 PM on April 11, 2006

Steve Nash has a legitimate claim to that trophy. but don't take my opinion for it - at the All-Star game, Iverson said so, as did Duncan and more than a few others. However, I think Lebron passed him in the second half. Billups beating him in the two occassions they met seems to be a bit of a red herring to me. Who cares? If they we're conference rivals, it might be a bigger deal. Besides, we're not arguing one on one talent - Billups would beat Nash every time - we're talking about being the difference in a team game. Ah, there are so many different ideas on what the MVP really means, but for my money - that Detorit team is a winning, playoff strong team without Billups. Phoenix? Not a chance. I'd be happy with Lebron or Nash winning it. No two players mean more to their team's success. Dirk is a close third in that regard. And for those people talking about "defence" - none of Lebron, Dirk, or Nash plays particularly good defence (and Nash is a better defender this year than last - seriously. Watch the games). It's a crying shame the way Lebron just lets guys go for long stretches of games. Just plain doesn't D up.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 10:21 PM on April 11, 2006

This one is simple, if you remove most of the candidates from their teams those teams would still make the playoffs or at least finish close. If you take Lebron away from the Cavs they are a last place team. I think that qualifies him as most valuable.

posted by doggstarr at 10:23 PM on April 11, 2006

Steve Nash is rapidly falling off of the MVP race in my mind...his Suns are slumping in the clutch, and granted, they're gonna be the #2 seed in the West, they have to watch out now cuz they're playing Sacramento in the playoffs, THE one low seed NOBODY wants to play...that should be a VERY GOOD matchup...

posted by chemwizBsquared at 11:11 PM on April 11, 2006

don't sleep on tim duncan if the spurs clinch the #1 spot in the west and if the pistons slide and they get the best overall he will win

posted by BigSpizznizzle at 04:29 AM on April 12, 2006

Lebron has definitely come on strong in the last few weeks. Statistically, he's emerged as the clear frontrunner. Coincidentally, his team has surged as well. I've read they don't give MVP to a player who's only 21. True, these last couple of decades it's gone almost entirely to mid- and late-career veterans. But lots of guys won it at age 23; Wes Unseld at 22. Nowitzki is the dark horse, in that he's the only 'big' that people are putting in their top 5. Wade and James are interchangeable; Kobe and Billups have their attractors. They'll all be fighting for the non-'big' vote.

posted by mike goodman at 06:08 AM on April 12, 2006

I think that it is interesting that there is no clear cut leader this year. No one player makes you say, 'wow, that was an MVP season'. Regarding Nash, it is hard to consider against the defending MVP when his game has risen yet again. I'm sort of anti-incumbent these days and may take it out on the Canadian. In a year when Nowitzki won the Three Point Shoot-out as well as carrying his team through a plethura of injuries he makes a strong case. On any given night Billups isn't even the best player on his team so I really can't consider him to be a strong contender outside of those two games with PHX. LeBron has come on strong of late but is still too young and unproven. Time to show your mettle, young man. Besides, just saying strong of late causes me to dismiss him from consideration. Kobe has a good case but traditionally the award is not given to a player on a lottery cusp team. I'll admit to viewing Kobe in a negative light; love the player, hate the man. Let him carry his team a little more and a little further and his time will come. Dwyane Wade? Meh. Kobe light. Sucks to be the next great Robin especially when the the first Robin thought he was Batman. My dark horse? For games played, Ron Artest has had a pretty incredible impact on the Sacramento Kings. The 2005-06 MVP? All things considered, I gotta go with Dirk Nowitzki.

posted by geekyguy at 07:45 AM on April 12, 2006

My three votes go to Steve Nash, Steve Nash, and finally Steve Nash. I am not a Suns fan. I know hands down he makes the Suns dangerous every time he touches the ball.

posted by mustang71 at 08:26 AM on April 12, 2006

I heard a theory that the MVP award should be given to the best player on the best team. That would clearly place Chauncey Billups as the winner. He does what his team needs him to do to win, whether that's defense, scoring, or running the offense. Dirk (great argument, but) technically did not win the 3-point contest and needs to step his D up as does Nash and LBJ. Kobe's team is not that good and he is not better than LeBron this season as an all-around player. I think that we are forgetting about the work horse in the LAC uni named Brand, the other all-around guy The Matrix and I also think Tony Parker and C. Anthony should get some mention. Tim Duncan...no way, not this season! Ron Artest has not been consistent enough and well, has not been an MBP - morally behaved player, so he will not even be mentioned!

posted by bkdet at 08:38 AM on April 12, 2006

Nashty is without a doubt the most valuable player on his team, but as with Chauncey and the Pistons, games can be won without him. I know the Suns fell apart in that one game without Nash, but they are good enough to run with almost any team when he's sidelined. They would not go far, but they can do some damage behind Marion, Diaw, Barbosa, Bell, House and Thomas!

posted by bkdet at 08:41 AM on April 12, 2006

Elton Brand. That's my vote, but there is no way he is winning MVP. Not when everyone mentioned above is in the running with him. If I had to guess, I would say Nash is the front-runner. Although if defense is the attribute these players lack, than Elton is the man. Or Marion. Elton can play defense with anyone, and Marion is a freak on the boards and on defense.

posted by sublime4390116 at 09:18 AM on April 12, 2006

What would the Lakers be without Kobe? He's having a career year and he gets passed over because his team around him sucks! He personally led that team to the playoffs, just as Lebron did for the Cavs. My vote is for Kobe with Lebron a close second. And Did we already forget his 81 pt game where he personally beat the other team?!

posted by nocurse at 11:00 AM on April 12, 2006

They would not go far, but they can do some damage behind Marion, Diaw, Barbosa, Bell, House and Thomas! Yes, indeed, many of those players (thinking Diaw and Barbosa especially) are former journeymen having career years. What's their secret? Why the big improvement? Oh... right. It's Steve Nash creating great looks for them and getting them the ball.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 11:10 AM on April 12, 2006

Kobe has not only led a group of players who would not start anywhere else in the NBA to the playoffs while giving Lamar the attention and space he needed to play to his potential. He has done whatever has needed to be done to make his team a winner. Lead the league in scoring, interviews, booing, more skills than anyone, defensive stalwart, breaking records regularly and finally let's not forget that he brought clutch back to the Lakers, no Kobe no rings. He's paid his dues...

posted by Sputnik at 11:17 AM on April 12, 2006

Lebron and Dirk have the biggest chances in my eyes they both contribute big to their teams. The mavs wouldn't be this good if it weren't for Dirk. The cavs wouldn't be this good if it wasn't for Lebron. But there has to be one winner, so Lebron will take this home just because he's doing the impossible he's so young but so talented there's nothing stopping this kid

posted by DerekB123 at 11:50 AM on April 12, 2006

Even though I hate the pistons I'm a bulls fan we already had our day with mj,sp and other gamers but my vote would go to chauncey billups he's meant the most to his team and they are the best team in the nba because they play as a team no ballhogs on that team

posted by luther70 at 12:26 PM on April 12, 2006

What's wrong with everybody? Doesn't anyone remember KOBE? I think it is outrageous that people don't recognize him as at least one of the leaders to get the award, let alone winning it. I think KOBE is the most dominant player in the league who has an enormous effect on his team's play. Just compare the Lakers with Kobe in the lineup, and without. No need to mention the 81 point game, and the 62 in three quarters. Think of this Jordan was MVP what? 6 times, i think and his career high is a dozen less then Kobe's. There have been others who have scored more then MJ in one game, but all of those have won the award. Also, as of the next game that the Lakers will play, Kobe will also pass MJ's record for points in one season, discounting Wilt!!!!!!!!!!!!!

posted by im050483 at 01:34 PM on April 12, 2006

Somewhere, somehow, we lost the handle on the rhetoric to reason ratio.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 01:51 PM on April 12, 2006

"Discounting Wilt" sounds like a sale at Ye Olde Fabric Barne.

posted by mr_crash_davis at 02:33 PM on April 12, 2006

Did somebody pushing Dirk Nowitski for MVP slight Steve Nash's defense? Did that really happen? I mean, Dirk Freakin' Nowitski? Please. The day Dirk Nowitski becomes a defensive stopper is the day I win the Slam Dunk Contest.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 03:18 PM on April 12, 2006

Oh... right. It's Steve Nash creating great looks for them and getting them the ball. Remember that basketball players play basketball, so they have the talent and potential to excel individually in any given situation. Yes Steve Nash makes it easier for them to score just as Jason Kidd does in NJ or Chris Paul in NO. Replace Nach with another good point guard and you probably will get the same affect. They've played all season with the same guy controlling the offense, meaning the ball is in his hands 85-90% of the time. He does not make Marion, Barbosa, Bell, Diaw, Thomas or House the players that they are...the talent is there! So those guys alone are better than most starting 5 +1 off the bench in the league without Nash!

posted by bkdet at 03:21 PM on April 12, 2006

Oh and Kobe may have had 62 in 3 quarters and 81, which are great, but look at his stats and his team. He's barely beating Lebron in 3P% and Stls while Lebron is beating him out in ASTs, FG% and REBs! He's good, but not Michael Jordan, which by the way won 5 MVP awards. Between the 2, LeBron is having a better season on a team with a better record, so LBJ should finish ahead of Kobe. Kobe has a Scottie in Lamar...well maybe not scottie, but he has a robin!

posted by bkdet at 03:30 PM on April 12, 2006

You could score 257 points in one game but if you don't do shit in the other 81 games in a season then you do not deserve the MVP. James is much better than Bryant because Bryant at least has a partial supporting cast, unlike James. In addition, unlike Steve Nash, James has shown up to play in the games where it has counted.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 03:56 PM on April 12, 2006

Kobe may have a Robin, but LBJ has Ilgauskas who's an all-star, and a center who demands major attention which makes it much easier for Lebron to work in the lane. Kobe doesn't. Cavs also have Larry Hughes who's a former all-star, and still a good player, and most importantly in my mind they have a proven point guard in Eric Snow who knows how to run an offense very well. Lakers have no such luxury in having anything close to a point guard. The closest they've got is Robin(LAMAR ODOM) and he plays a different position. Over all the CAVS have better talent on the team then the LAKERS, and that is why they are having the better season. I can't argue that Lebron is a great player and is having his best season so far, but I think we're all so spoiled by Kobe's performances that we tend to forget about just how great he is. Also, I don't think that Lebron could do as well if he had as much pressure as Kobe does to produce points.

posted by im050483 at 04:17 PM on April 12, 2006

Tim Duncan has never averaged more than 25 ppg. he is at 22 he is the poster child for the legue in the past they gave it to him over kevin garnett when k.g deffinantly had the better season if the race stay's as close as it is they will fall back on him. Lebron my personal favorite is just not polished enough and it will give him something to work for,wich is good for us the last thing we need is to have another young star pull a penny hardaway or a grant hill and start there career great and then fall off. But why wouldn't they give it to nash he elevated to levels unknown to common folk in the abscence of probably the games brightest stars in possibly the most important position on the court

posted by BigSpizznizzle at 04:19 PM on April 12, 2006

lebron has no pressure to score? that is the most outragous thing i have ever heard people in antarctica expect lebron to score 30 a night

posted by BigSpizznizzle at 04:23 PM on April 12, 2006

I think that Starbury should get some MVP votes... he and Larry Brown could be the co- MVPs, according to their paychecks, they seem like they should definately be in the running.

posted by redsoxrgay at 04:29 PM on April 12, 2006

Kobe's performances have been masterful at times, and among the best in the league consistently, carrying his team on his back, and blah blah blah - but the Lakers are a bubble team so that's pretty much the end of that. As for Lebron v Nash: I don't know who has the edge- Lebron is certainly more entertaining to watch- but who in God's name are people kidding with talk of Diaw, Barbosa, Bell, House and Thomas being exceptional talents with or without Nash...? those guys alone (incl Marion, who I omitted before cuz he's bonafide) are better than most starting 5 +1 off the bench in the league without Nash! WTF?!? Please tell me that was a joke, or I misread it or something...

posted by MW12 at 04:31 PM on April 12, 2006

Nash didn't deserve it the year that he did win it , and certainly doesn't deserve it now . Billups or Nowitski . Kobe certainly has a shot at it , but doesn't deserve it until he actually proves he can be a TEAM player .

posted by alvinthefirst at 04:46 PM on April 12, 2006

Y. Ming should totally get MVP HAHAHAAH

posted by airman at 05:05 PM on April 12, 2006

LBJ *deserves* the MVP, for all the reasons mentioned. But I'm here to tell you why he won't...the same reason Nick Lidstrom lost the Norris to guys like Blake and MacInnis. The voters have the idea in the back of their heads the LeBron is young, and will win his share of MVPs before he's through. If he was far and away the MVP this season, he'd get it now. But there's 4 or 5 viable candidates around him, so they'll all take the easy way out and vote for someone else. BTW, my homer vote goes to Chauncey...after watching the Pistons offense look lost when Arroyo (or Hunter, at times) was coming off the bench for Chauncey , I'm not so sure they'd be half the team they are without him...

posted by MeatSaber at 05:10 PM on April 12, 2006

You guys are nuts- Jason Richardson has the stone cold lock this season.

posted by irunfromclones at 06:20 PM on April 12, 2006

Please tell me you are joking about J-rich... Warriors:30 and 47 overall, and 1-9 in their last 10. J-rich is great, athletic, and one of the best guys in the league just waiting to get picked up by a team with a shot in hell, but he is no MVP for the same reason that Kobe WILL NOT WIN THE MVP. There is no freakin way a sub 500 team will garner an MVP trophy; no way. Ok, now i'll wait for you to tell us you were joking, and my emotional response was premature.

posted by everett at 07:08 PM on April 12, 2006

There is no freakin way a sub 500 team will garner an MVP trophy; no way. Ahem. The 1956 St. Louis Hawks finished 33-39 for a .458 winning percentage. Star player Bob Petit took home the MVP that year.

posted by lilnemo at 07:39 PM on April 12, 2006

I think I feel a column coming on...

posted by lilnemo at 07:39 PM on April 12, 2006

Nash has my vote..he takes 4 average players an makes them believe they can win it all,plus nash is the ultimate team player,he puts team first, me last philosophy 80 games a year..nash isn't the flashy..kobe,lebron or shaq..doesn't want to be either,which is admirable in todays basketball players..which after his so-called 'crappy' year that got him the mvp in first place..he playin better this year than last year..thus, he's earned his second mvp...enuf said!!

posted by ktown at 08:08 PM on April 12, 2006

That was a low blow airman, with your Yao Ming reference... Even I am not touting anyone from the Rockets as MVP. My team needs to tank the final games to try to get within the top 4 or 5 for the lottery pick...Someone tell Kelvin Cato we want our money back! (pretend you are quoting that rap tune when you read that part).

posted by astrorocket at 08:52 PM on April 12, 2006

Are there any real basketball players posting to this site or just talking heads wanting to post their opinion on a sport they only watch? As for Thomas, Barbosa, Diaw, House and Bell, they are all talented, Steve Nash did not give them there talent or potential. Has anyone followed these guys before this season? Probably not, but do some homework and find out what they were doing before (i.e., high school, college, d-league, CBA, etc.)

posted by bkdet at 10:12 PM on April 12, 2006

Are there any real basketball players posting to this site or just talking heads wanting to post their opinion on a sport they only watch? So, you are in the NBA, CBA, WNBA, or what? Or do you have a basketball hoop nailed at roughly 9'6" on your broken down garage, and so you consider yourself an expert on the subject because of it? yes, we do watch the sport here, and we are talking heads. I play basketball too, so what of it?

posted by everett at 10:39 PM on April 12, 2006

No, I've played the game at every level except for the NBA. I own a gym with a 2 full courts and not one with goals at 9'6"! If you play the game and are any good at it (which is probably not the case for everett) then you will know that one player does not give another player talent as someone suggested Nash does for his teammates! On any given night, any player in the NBA could score a lot of points, pass out several assists, haul in double digit rebounds, etc! If you are in the NBA, you are there because you have the talent or someone saw great potential. Nash makes it easier for his teammates to play better, but he does not have the power to create talent!

posted by bkdet at 08:38 AM on April 13, 2006

Nash makes it easier for his teammates to play better That's exactly what I said: "It's Steve Nash creating great looks for them and getting them the ball." And one could argue that that's the definition of the MVP. But I guess I wouldn't know, having never played competitively. Pity, that.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:20 AM on April 13, 2006

bkdet- I can only speak for myself, as one of the people who called you out for your comments about Thomas, Barbosa, Diaw, House and Bell - and no I have not played competitive ball in a long time so I guess I'm just another talking head. However, my issue was not that these guys don't have skills but the notion that "those guys alone are better than most starting 5 +1 off the bench in the league without Nash." So rather than arguing semantics, or going with the age old, over used notion that because some of us don't play pro ball (or pro golf, or pro hockey, etc) that our opinions are somehow baseless - because that would negate 90some% of what most respected sportscasters have been saying since the beginning of time - what say instead you take a stab at justifying your position?

posted by MW12 at 09:39 AM on April 13, 2006

Fuck that. As Joe Morgan, Tim McCarver and John Kruk have proven at every turn - playing the game does not give one an expertise that others cannot overcome. Of course, Stephen A. Smith also proves the reverse. However, talent does not trump brain-power when it comes to understanding sports.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 09:54 AM on April 13, 2006

Wait, wait wait, guys... I really think we might want to start unconditionally listening to bkdet, after all he does "own a gym with a 2 full courts." I don't own any gyms with any a courts, and it would make sense that the guy knows way more about basketball than all of us. Nevermind the fact that many of us are professional multi sport referee's, some of us talented columnists, etc... Give me a break buddy. If you actully did play at every level, good for you I guess. it does not give you any validity in my book; it just makes you look like an asshole, for dropping your supposed great basketball background as legitimate cause for your opinion being elevated above others. I also played basketball quite a bit, granted not at "every level." I never played NCAA ball, or pro ball, So I obviously really know jack shit about basketball.

posted by everett at 11:45 AM on April 13, 2006

Ok, now i'll wait for you to tell us you were joking, and my emotional response was premature. Yes, I was. But that's not the only thing about you that prematures...

posted by irunfromclones at 04:30 PM on April 13, 2006

I have to agree with bkdet since I have played at every level of basketball, including the NBA. 10 or 12 seasons in the NBA alone, from Rookie to Pro. Although I have to admit, the new "franchise" level in the latest version is pretty tough.

posted by irunfromclones at 04:37 PM on April 13, 2006

Oh man, now we have all sorts of celebrity basketball players here on SpoFi. Stop the presses... Get out the red carpets. Everyone keep your opinions to yourself; we are in the presence of true genius, both on the court and off.

posted by everett at 05:16 PM on April 13, 2006

Well there seems to be a problem with everett! You challenged me and said thats I had the broken rim on the broken garage and I corrected you. Name calling is not necessary, but I guess that what insecure and ignorant people do. Playing the game on different levels gives someone a better perspective into the game versus someone who has played rec ball and within a few organized summer leagues. If we were all talking about rec ball then this would be a different forum! Grow up everett!

posted by bkdet at 08:25 AM on April 14, 2006

Wait... you grow up! I was involved in a discussion about basketball.., You are the one that said... oh whatever, I never did any name calling... celebrity!

posted by everett at 10:56 AM on April 14, 2006

I am so, so glad I stayed out of this thread.

posted by chicobangs at 11:05 AM on April 14, 2006

Chico, I wish I hadn't posted it.

posted by everett at 11:16 AM on April 14, 2006

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