A Month into the NBA season, MVP Conversation Has Already Begun
By: Ubong Ekpo
Although this is a very early showing of the NBA season, if the performances are kept up-we’re going to be in for a very tight race for MVP.
Kawhi Leonard has returned to elite form with his new team the Toronto Raptors after his final controversial injury riddled season with the San Antonio Spurs.
The Raptors currently have the best record in the Eastern Conference, as well as in the entire NBA.
The Raptors hope their success in the regular season and playoffs is enough to entice Leonard to re sign with the team, as he will be a free agent next summer.
Rumors say Leonard will want to sign with a team in Los Angeles, either the Clippers or Lakers, the Lakers being favored.
In Milwaukee, Giannis Antetokounmpo has lead the Bucks to new heights so far, all while playing under new head coach Mike Budenholzer.
With averages of 25.8 points, 12.7 rebounds and 5.6 assist , The Greek Freak and the Bucks look prime to make some noise in the Eastern Conference and take that next step. If Giannis maintains his play and the Bucks finish as a top 4 team in the east, he just may earn his first MVP.
In the western conference, new comer LeBron James and his Los Angeles Lakers team are still finding their chemistry as a team,but LeBron’s numbers couldn’t have looked any better with averages of 28.8 points, 7.7 rebounds and 6.9 assist.
On November 14th, James’ scored 44 points en route to passing Wilt Chamberlain to be 5th all time on the NBA’s scoring list.
With the Lakers improving and James’ excellent play, LeBron could be on pace for his first MVP award since 2013.
Damian Lillard has lead the Portland Trailblazers to a hot start.
There were some doubts about whether the Blazers would be able to maintain their playoff spot, with Lebron James’ coming to the western conference and teams who missed the playoffs last year such as the Denver Nuggets improving.
Lillard in particular has a lot of critics to answer to after the Blazers, who were the 3rd seed in the Western Conference last season, were upset in a surprising first round sweep by the hands of Anthony Davis and the New Orleans Pelicans.
Lillard’s play in the series was abysmal, so his start to this season has put many on notice that Lillard hasn’t fallen off.
Prior to his abductor injury that has kept him out of action for the previous week, Stephen Curry was playing on a level that nearly made him the runaway candidate for MVP already.
It hadn’t been since the 2015-2016 season, the last season Curry played before Durant joined the Warriors, that Curry was playing at such a high level.
The Golden State Warriors are currently reeling in the absence of their star guard Stephen Curry.
In the week he’s been gone,the Warriors have gone 1-4,
His absence coupled with the teams struggles may add weight to what may be a controversial MVP race.
Ever since Kevin Durant made his decision to join the Golden State Warriors, they don’t seem to get the same credit for winning that other champions do.
Durant’s addition to the team that had already won the most games in nba history with 73, has caused the Warriors to look over powerful with talent.
Boasting 4 of the 20 best players in the entire league, two of them being mvp caliber players in their primes, will always be a major disadvantage to the NBA talent wise.
Despite this, it won’t be right to out right exclude Steph Curry from the MVP conversation.
He’s putting up numbers comparable to his last MVP campaign and the Warriors are currently showing they need him more than ever.