Monday, May 08, 2006

Hardwood Hardware

Not that anyone cares, but while it's in the news I want to get a few things off my chest about the MVP thing.

First, Steve Nash deserved the award even had Phoenix gone down in flames to Kobe and the Lakers. The award has always gone to the player who had the biggest numbers while also leading his team to the top of the standings. While the numbers for Kobe and Lebron were gaudier than Nash's (at least in terms of scoring) they led their teams to decent, not great regular seasons.

Nash may have a better supporting cast than those guys, but think about it--had you ever heard of Boris Diaw or Leandro Barbosa before they started playing with Nash? Had Tim Thomas ever accomplished anything in his career before joining the Suns? Would you have expected the Suns to have the 4th-best record in the league with Amare Stoudemire out for the whole season?

Dirk Nowitzki also would have been a good choice, since his team did even better than Phoenix, but they didn't have the personnel issues Nash had to deal with. As for the Pistons and Spurs, they both thrived through team effort, not individual performances (Duncan's numbers were down this year due to injury).

Kobe had a monster year, but did he make his teammates better? It doesn't appear so. If anything, the opposite may have been the case.

One more note on this subject: since there's a regular season MVP and a Finals MVP, why is there no playoffs MVP? The NCAAs have their All-Regional teams in the tournament; the NBA should do something similar, since their playoffs drag on for nearly a season's length anyway. If the Lakers had managed to knock off the Suns, this would have given Kobe the chance for some individual hardware while sparing the League the embarrassment of giving their only MVP trophy to a player who had already been eliminated from the playoffs.

Agreed? Good, I'm glad that's settled.


  1. I know I overlink to Slate, but there's a great piece this morning by Sam Anderson on the "pleasure" of hating Kobe, which sums up my own feelings on the matter, and on player-hating in general.

    Key quotes: "I don't hate Kobe for petty reasons... The true source of my rage is much, much deeper: I hate Kobe Bryant's rotten and derivative soul."

    And: "... (M)y wife wondered aloud whether my hatred might be doing permanent damage to my heart. But I know it's not. Hating an athlete isn't like hating an actual person. It's like hating a character in a novel."

  2. My vote (if I had one) goes to LeBron.

  3. Why Lebron?

    Damn you and your one-line posts, SJ! This is supposed to be a discussion forum, not a DL soliloquy ...

  4. Anonymous11:29 AM

    Really amazing! Useful information. All the best.