Monday, May 15, 2006

LeBron is KING!!!


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Originally Posted by Deron Lee
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.

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So...Nash's team finshed 3rd in the standings and Lebron's team finished 4th? So Nash's team had a "great" regular season, while Lebron's was "decent"? It's not like we are talking about the split from 5 years ago where the West was 5 seeds better than the east either. Lots of West teams were down this year that used to be powers.This point of comparison should not be enough to offset the dramatic differences in statistics.
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Originally Posted by Deron Lee
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?
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No I had not heard of those guys. But I don't think you would nominate LeBron's supporting cast for All-NBA honors. I mean, we all love Drew Gooden, but he and Larry Hughes hadn't exactly found their niche either.
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Originally Posted by Deron Lee
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.
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I notice here that you did not try to make this point about LeBron, because obviously it would not apply. LeBron has upped Drew, and the Big Z's game quite a bit.

Finally,


Steve Nash 18.8 PPG 4.2 RPG 10.2 APG .77 SPG BPG .15 3.49 TO PG

Lebron James 31.4 PPG 7.0 RPG 6.6 APG 1.6 SPG BPG .84 3.34 TO PG

I believe I would take the latter stat line every time. Plus, Lebron shot an un-Iversonesque 48% from the field.

Only two other men have put up 25, 7, and 7 since 1980 - Larry Bird and Michael Jordan. Not to mention that he can actually body up someone and play D, unlike a certain Rock-hairdoed Canadian.

10 comments:

  1. That's more like it, Scottie. Now you're cooking with gas!

    These are all good points, and your argument has more force to it now that Lebron and the Cavs are giving Detroit all they can handle.

    I concede on the head-to-head numbers. Still, the difference isn't that great: when you add field goals and assists Lebron's producing a total of about 45 points a game and Nash is producing about 39.

    I don't think either one has ever been accused of playing much defense, though Lebron's athleticism gives him the potential to be great defensively (a la the block on Billy Thomas that I mentioned in an earlier thread).

    Secondly, Lebron's supporting cast has better credentials: Drew, Z, Donyell Marshall, Eric Snow and Hughes all had good numbers before hitching to Lebron's wagon. With Phoenix, only Shawn Marion had a resume prior to hooking up with Nash. (Again, I can't overemphasize this point--the Suns won 54 games this year w/OUT Amare Stoudemire--would the Cavs have won 50 without Ilgauskas?).

    The West is still easily better than the East. Yes, the Pistons are the favorite to win the championship, but no other Eastern team has a shot. If Phoenix was out East they'd be the 2 seed.

    Look at their competition. Cleveland's division had only one other team above .500 while Phoenix's had only one team NOT above .500. Would Cleveland have won 50 if they had to play the Lakers, Clippers, and Kings every other night (not to mention Dallas and SA)?

    The fact is, both teams were totally moribund before Nash/Lebron arrived. Lebron's individual numbers are better but Nash made his team better against tougher competition.

    I wouldn't really have objected to Lebron winning, but as a hoops purist I'm glad to see that the MVP balloting isn't simply a statistical exercise.

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  2. No other eastern team has a shot?

    I don't think Shaq-Fu and D-Wade are down with that.

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  3. The Heat have great talent, but they haven't played well all year. Beating the Nets, who have basically no inside or outside game, doesn't impress me much.

    Their only chance is if the Cavs somehow upset the Pistons, and the Clippers or Suns somehow upset the Mavs or Spurs. (I like Phoenix but I don't know how they'd guard Shaq).

    (And yes, I'm still giving the Spurs a chance--they're on life support but they're not dead yet).

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  4. The Chosen One is now up 3-2 on the defending E. conf. champs!

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  5. We are all witnesses!

    Actually, I'm not a witness. I haven't been watching much of this series, but I'm very impressed with your boy nonetheless, SJ. I was surprised that the Cavs tied the series; I'm downright stunned at last night's result. (Congrats to Drew Gooden for hitting the game-winning shot, although he was not a factor in the game overall).

    This doesn't change my argument on the MVP issue. Nash and the Suns are up 3-2 as well, and besides, the MVP is given for regular-season performance, not playoffs. This only reinforces what I said below--there should be a playoffs MVP; if LBJ can get the Cavs to the Finals, he would have to be the hands-down winner. But alas, there is no such award.

    Now both of last year's finalists are on the verge of elimination. I'm not too surprised about the Spurs; the Mavs have had their number all year. But I didn't think anybody in the East could touch the Pistons.

    It ain't over yet. Rasheed Wallace has been injured; if he's better by Game 6 they may be able to turn it around. Also, remember that the Pistons have a history of winning series where they were down 3-2; they've done it at least 3 times in the last 3 years that I can think of, and they almost did it in the Finals last year ...

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