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Posts Tagged ‘NBA MVP

Predictions, Predictions, Predictions everywhere: 2011-2012 NBA Awards Picks

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Derrick Rose

Derrick Rose's position as the lone superstar on a league best team gives him an MVP race advantage (Image via Wikipedia)

Who’s winning the major awards in this shortened NBA season?

Here’s my picks:

Sixth Man of the Year: James Harden. Not an original pick at all but it’s the obvious choice. The Thunder will likely have one of the best records which together with making a jump as a player, will give Harden the profile and narrative to win the awards. Harden could even make the all-star team this year. When a team jumps out to the best record in their conference, Harden getting in like Jameer Nelson did the year the Magic were the league’s best story is reasonable.

Coach of the Year: George Karl. The Coach of the Year award has morphed into the “Coach of the most surprising team” award lately, so if the Nuggets jump out to a top 4 record in the Western Conference Karl will fit that metric. He’s also a true veteran coach and has coached succesful teams for quite some time – but has never won coach of the year. This is another reason for them to finally give him one.

Rookie of the Year: Kyrie Irving. I could see Irving, Jimmer Fredette, Kemba Walker, Brandon Knight and Ricky Rubio all have similarly impressive rookie seasons statistically. The difference in Irving’s case is I expect the Cavaliers to be a better than than all of those other players’. Which may be a result of having a good frontcourt and good 3pt shooting, but Irving’s presence will get a lot of credit for it if they surprise. Read the rest of this entry »

Rose vs Howard and the Inescapability of Narrative

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Image by joguldi via Flickr

In a very strange year where every candidate has something “wrong” with them, we’re still debating the MVP race with only a few games left. The race has narrowed around the star of the golden team (Derrick Rose) and the one MVP candidate from last year who can say he’s improved (Dwight Howard).

Opinions tend to be with the mainstream guys going for Rose and the heavy blogger thinker guys on the internet going for Howard. (And let’s note that the poll on the APBRmetrics board sides with LeBron.) I’m personally on record as being on the fence between Rose and Howard, so what gets me ornery enough to write a piece is someone being dead set that even sitting on the fence is wrong.

Enter John Hollinger. With him, it seems I’m guaranteed to find both compelling arguments, and some stuff I disagree with enough that I end up writing about it. (Unfortunate that  I end up writing about the “bad” because I really do respect the guy, and I absolutely use his stats.)  He’s now written Truth about the Derrick Rose Story, trying to take down Rose, and favoring Howard, so it’s on.

Turn Me On, Dead Man

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Written by Matt Johnson

April 7, 2011 at 2:00 am

2011 NBA POY Watch 12/18

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My version of the NBA MVP list. Updated weekly.

Player (Last Week’s Rank)

1. Dirk Nowitzki (1)

Way, way out in front.

2. Deron Williams (2)

That loss to New Orleans was bizarre, but it’s still just one game.  Day in and day out, among the inarguably good teams, no one is carrying their team more.

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Written by Matt Johnson

December 20, 2010 at 1:09 pm

2011 NBA POY Watch 12/11

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My version of the NBA MVP list. Updated weekly.

Player (Last Week’s Rank)

1. Dirk Nowitzki (1)

Another week and the streak continues.  We now have 3 teams with records far better than the rest of the league, and only 1 of those teams is let by a superstar.  Easy choice.

2. Deron Williams (2)

The Jazz haven’t pulled away from the 2nd tier of teams record-wise, but there’s little to dislike about the club.  Their losses are coming against great teams that they fight hard, and it’s pretty much a given that in each of those games Deron will play like a champion.

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2011 NBA POY Watch 11/15

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Ordered by current ranking, here’s the top 10 with last week’s ranking in parens.

1. Chris Paul (1)

Unreal.  This Hornets club has to be one of the most surprising 8-0 teams in NBA history.  Paul clearly deserves a ton of credit.  He’s playing spectacular, and is the team’s star in really all senses.  The teams been extraordinary enough that I’d like to also give a shout out to rookie coach Monty Williams.  What a way to start a career.  The fact that it’s all being done with defense as the focus, and with Paul not playing huge minutes is stunning.

I’m still not a believer – I can’t quite picture this team being fitted for rings – but credit where credit is due, at this point it’s unfair to treat this like something could be due simply to luck.

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Written by Matt Johnson

November 15, 2010 at 4:24 am