After coming in second place to Russell Westbrook at last year’s NBA Awards, James Harden got some redemption. Last night, James Harden won the 2017-2018 Most Valuable Player.
The NBA held their second annual awards show held last night. In the past, the awards were given throughout the playoffs. However, they established the award show last year. Initially, I didn’t like the idea of the NBA Awards show, but I’m warming up to it.
The NBA Awards features the prestigious awards from the regular season. They include awards like the Coach of the Year, Rookie of the Year, Most Improved Player, and the Most Valuable Player. There are three nominees for each category. For example, this year’s Rookie of the Year category featured Donovan Mitchell, Ben Simmons, and Jayson Tatum. The NBA Awards also features awards such as Sportsmanship award, the Lifetime Achievement award, and fan awards such as Dunk of the Year. For the fan awards, fans had the opportunity to vote on NBA.com for their winners. All of these various awards were given out throughout the night. But, the biggest award is undeniably the MVP.
The finalist for the MVP were Anthony Davis, James Harden, and LeBron James. Anthony Davis averaged 28.1 points and 11.1 rebounds in the regular season. He also led the league in blocks with 2.6. Davis helped the Pelicans get to the NBA Playoffs with a record of 48-34. In the first round, the Pelicans beat the Portland Trailblazers, who were the higher seed. The Warriors eliminated the Pelicans in the second round. Anthony Davis had a MVP caliber season, and deserved to be one of the finalist.
James Harden led the league in scoring. He averaged 30.1 points per game. He led the Rockets to a 65-17 regular season. Initially, Harden was a shoo-in for the MVP, but LeBron James made his chances at MVP more challenging. James Harden was so close last year, that it would have been unfortunate to see him lose again. If the MVP award went from the regular season to playoffs, LeBron James could have won. But, the MVP is for the regular season. James Harden deserved this award for his performance in the regular season.
MVP!!!!!! ✊🏾🤘🏾 pic.twitter.com/IO0StRAsNV
— Chris Paul (@CP3) June 26, 2018
LeBron James was on the verge of his fifth MVP. In the regular season, James averaged 27.5, 9.1 assists, and 8.6 rebounds. He also averaged 34.0 points in the playoffs. He led the Cavs to the NBA Finals for the 4th straight year. This year’s Cavaliers were a different group then last year. Last year, James had Kyrie Irving. This year, he had George Hill, Larry Nance Jr., Rodney Hood and so on. This was a different group, but he managed to get them to the finals, which is MVP worthy. But, the award went to James Harden, which is fair.
James Harden joins his former teammates in Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook as MVP winners. It makes you wonder what could have been.
The Thunder are the first franchise in NBA History to draft future MVPs in three consecutive seasons. Remarkable
— Hoop Central (@TheHoopCentral) June 26, 2018
Regardless, congrats to James Harden on his MVP win.