Jay C. Brandriet
The NBA’s most prestigious regular season award is often seen as subjective and complicated. Someone always brings up the argument, “what do they mean by “VALUABLE?” We all get that. It’s some combination of winning, great play, and unique story/circumstances.
For me, we shouldn’t even bring up the MVP until just after mid season.
At that point, I thought LeBron had a slight lead.
Harden made a nice push before his injury.
Luka was the pre season favorite, but still showed well.
Rudy Gobert is way more valuable, than the amount of love he will get.
The hardest guy to leave out, is Damian Lillard.
MY FIVE FINALISTS FOR NBA MVP
#5- GIANNIS ANTETOKOUNMPO (Milwaukee Bucks)
In the hunt to become the world’s best player, Giannis kept his standards and added some polish. He was battling his own shadow this time around. Coming off back to back MVP’s, Antetokounmpo was going to struggle to win the honor three times straight.
#4- CHRIS PAUL (Phoenix Suns)
Paul was the straw that stirred the Suns to high levels. He’s culture, clutch, and a mid range killer. Efficient and durable from start to finish. He led the league in free throw percentage at a ridiculous clip of 93.4%.
#3- STEPHEN CURRY (Golden State Warriors)
Steph’s best, was better than anyone in basketball this year. Leading this particular squad to the 8th seed was a remarkable feat. At age 33, Curry had arguably his most sensational run. Context matters.
#2- JOEL EMBIID (Philadelphia 76ers)
Embiid’s size and skills jump off the television. He’s like a cartoon. This season saw the payoff of the process. Joel led the 76ers to the best record in a top heavy East. HIs brilliance helps me look away from the nights he missed. We have to note, Philly was 10-11 without him.
#1- NIKOLA JOKIC (Denver Nuggets)
The best choice for NBA MVP is Nikola Jokic. He had the most consistent, well rounded stretch of domination in 2021. In a crammed set up, he played every game. “The Joker” was SO fantastic, a 3rd seed in the West is puts him over the top. Jokic at age 26, is already one of the best passers to ever live.
Jay C. Brandriet