Every year as the season draws to a close there are countless debates concerning the meaning of the word ‘valuable’ in Most Valuable Player. Let me explain what I think it means and how I propose to solve this dilemma once and for all.
I believe that the intention of the Regular Season’s Most Valuable Player award is to recognize a player for their accomplishments over that regular season. It is intended to be based on individual accomplishments during one league season rather than an assessment of talent – it is awarded yearly, remember. As far as precedence, we also have a Finals MVP which serves a similar purpose for the NBA Finals; we do not look at the regular season or previous Finals performances when determining that award. However, I believe that it is the word value that is what creates the confusion. I believe that word implies something to some people other than it’s intended criteria.
So this year there was no doubt that Stephen Curry was the league’s MVP during this regular season.
However… there can also be no doubt, at least to this observer, that LeBron James is the BEST. PLAYER. ON EARTH.
So how do we solve this conundrum? I believe that it is simple. We have two awards with set criteria that properly align the verbiage (value) with the criteria.
1.) Create a new award: The Michael Jordan Trophy perhaps? – would be awarded to the NBA’s MVP. It would be re-defined as the best player in the game (team criteria should not be used). It would be determined by a vote by ONLY the players and a predetermined roster of coaches (perhaps Head Coaches and up to three assistants per team).
Remember that the NBA MVP used to be voted on by the players – In fact: during the year that Oscar Roberson averaged a triple double, Wilt Chamberlain also averaged over 50 points and 20 rebounds per game – but a players vote named Bill Russell as league MVP.
2.) Modify the current award: The Maurice Podoloff Trophy would be awarded to the Player of the Year (PotY). It would be defined as the best regular season performance by a player during the course of that given season.
So this year’s MVP would have been LeBron and the year’s PotY would have been Curry.
So c’mon people please stop the madness. Stephen Curry is awesome, I love watching him play. But he is just not a better overall player than LeBron (or even Durant). And don’t give me the “we have too many awards already” nonsense… we do not currently have any awards that the players vote on… so that means we do not have enough.
Until next time: Be reasonable – listen to each other to understand, not to argue.