Why Isn’t LeBron James In The NBA MVP Discussion This Season?
At this point, the race for the NBA‘s Most Valuable Player award has pretty much come down to two players. Golden State Warriors guard Steph Curry and Houston Rockets guard James Harden are the frontrunners for the award, and the consensus seems to be that one of those two players is going to walk away with it. Curry has been absolutely spectacular for the Warriors this season and has led them to the best record in the league, and Harden has kept the Rockets in the thick of things in the tough Western Conference despite some costly injuries to several of his teammates, including Dwight Howard. So there’s no denying that both of them deserve the award. But because of how good they’ve been, are MVP voters sleeping on LeBron James?
LeBron’s Cleveland Cavaliers teammate J.R. Smith thinks they are. Last night, LeBron scored 21 points, dished out 11 assists, and grabbed 10 rebounds against the Detroit Pistons to notch the 39th regular season triple-double of his NBA career. So after the game, Smith told ESPN.com that he thinks LeBron deserves more MVP consideration.
“Who? The real MVP?” he said. “There’s a lot of speculation about who should get the award, but we all know who the real MVP is…In actuality, if you really wanted to, you could give it to him every year. I mean, the numbers, what he does for teams.”
Smith then recognized what Curry and Harden have done this season but said that he’s still standing behind his teammate when it comes to who should win the MVP award.
“Not to knock anything from the other two guys,” he said. “They’re having great years, career years for both of them, but if you want to be realistic about it, you could give it to him every time.”
Smith is right…to a degree. You could give LeBron the MVP award every single season. He always puts up MVP-like numbers, and he always makes his team one of the best teams in the entire league. But this season hasn’t been an MVP season for LeBron. He started off the season slow as he tried to figure out how to coexist with his new teammates. He missed a two-week stretch in early January with a couple of injuries. And while he has put up big numbers over the last two months of the season, he hasn’t really had a big MVP moment like Curry and Harden have. So while he deserves to be mentioned as an MVP candidate, he should not win the MVP award this season.
Do you think LeBron deserves MVP consideration this season? Or should the award go to either Curry or Harden?