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Monday, January 28, 2008

MVP/RoY Rankings, Part V

The fifth edition of the blogger MVP/RoY rankings has just been posted at Pickaxe and Roll.

Here are links to the previous four editions:

MVP/RoY rankings, Part I

MVP/RoY rankings, Part II

MVP/RoY rankings, Part III

MVP/RoY rankings, Part IV

Here is my complete ballot exactly as I submitted it (MVP and RoY votes are scored on a 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 and 5-4-3-2-1 basis respectively, so Bryant is my top MVP pick and Durant is my top RoY pick):

10-Kobe Bryant: With Bynum out, Kobe has shown that he will do whatever it takes to keep the Lakers afloat--scoring 48 points against Seattle and passing for 11 dimes against Denver. The Lakers have a killer road schedule coming up but if Kobe can help them go 5-4 or 4-5 during that stretch then they will not lose too much ground in the standings before Bynum returns.
9-LeBron James: A deadly scorer and passer but even he says that Kobe is the best player in the league.
8-Dwight Howard: He is physically overpowering yet cannot take over a game as consistently as Kobe and LeBron can.
7-Kevin Garnett: His individual stats are down but the numbers that best reflect his impact are the won-loss records of the team he left and the team he joined.
6-Tim Duncan: Somehow, in recent years he is not mentioned much in MVP talk. The main reason his regular season numbers are not as gaudy as they used to be is that his minutes are down a bit.
5-Chris Paul: He hasn't scored 20 points in a game since January 9 but he continues to rack up the assists and the Hornets keep winning.
4-Dirk Nowitzki: Last year's MVP is still trying to make people forget Dallas' first round exit but he and the Mavs are playing very well.
3-Steve Nash: He still is the player who makes the Suns' high octane offense go.
2-Amare Stoudemire: His scoring, blocked shots and field goal percentage are all up from last year as he continues to show that he has fully recovered from the microfracture procedure.
1-Allen Iverson: He is a big reason why Denver started out January with an 8-4 record.


5-Kevin Durant: Seattle is 0 for January so far and Durant's game has remained the same: he alternates 4-13 shooting nights with 12-23 shooting nights and it all averages out to a field goal percentage that hovers consistently around .400. He provides minimal contributions in the other statistical categories.
4-Al Horford: He is averaging more than 9 ppg and 9 rpg while shooting a good percentage from the field.
3-Sean Williams: Athletic big man who blocks shots, rebounds and shoots a good percentage.
2-Yi Jianlian: Like all of these rookies, he has been up and down but he looks like a promising player overall.
1-Luis Scola: Solid scorer and rebounder off of the bench.

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posted by David Friedman @ 6:17 AM



At Monday, January 28, 2008 12:07:00 PM, Blogger madnice said...

Apparently you arent watching Brandon Roy play. He should be on your list at least once. Iverson....please he has Carmelo as a big help. Who does Roy have? I know Bryant will be your top now and every year until he retires. Duncan could be MVP every year but David hes not having an MVP type year. Paul, whose team has a better record than Duncan, should be ahead of Duncan and Howard. Plus Paul is playing better. I dont care what James says ever but since his numbers are so great of course he should be high on the list....and Im surprised he outplayed Bryant yesterday. You have to have at least one Celtic so Garnett is a logical choice.

At Monday, January 28, 2008 3:26:00 PM, Blogger David Friedman said...


Roy is having a solid all around season. As I mentioned in a previous post, he should definitely make the All-Star team. However, I'm still not convinced that he is one of the 10 best players in the NBA. That said, as I explained the last time we did these rankings, in my opinion there are usually only five-six legit MVP candidates in a given season. So, players 5-15 could probably be listed in a lot of different orders. I'd have Roy somewhere in the 10-15 area right now. The Nuggets and Blazers have about the same record and Iverson is putting up much better numbers than Roy. Iverson is a more explosive player who I think causes more matchup problems than Roy at this stage of their careers.

By the way, go back and look at the earlier editions. I did not have Bryant in the number one spot each time.

Duncan is having the same kind of year as KG: solid numbers playing alongside two other stars on a very good team.

I have LeBron high on the list and I think that he is closer to Kobe now than anyone else has been in the past three seasons. Of course, I'm not going to change my rankings based on one game (and the Cle-LAL game was played after the rankings were submitted, anyway).

At Monday, January 28, 2008 3:37:00 PM, Blogger madnice said...

Iverson has help. Take Iverson off the Nuggets and they still have Melo. Take Roy off Portland and they have no one that compared to a Melo type player. Plus its not always about numbers. Plus I have yet to see anyone guard Roy. I cant compare their careers since this is Roys second year.

Ok so you didnt have Bryant in the top spot early on in the season. It just seems like you do.

At Monday, January 28, 2008 3:58:00 PM, Blogger David Friedman said...


Portland has a balanced squad with several players making nice contributions. Aldridge is averaging 17.2 ppg, Outlaw is averaging 13.0 ppg and Webster is averaging 10.5 ppg. Two other players are averaging more than 9 ppg. Roy is averaging 19.4 ppg, 5.6 apg, 4.4 rpg and .9 spg while shooting .460, .341 and .786 from the field, the three point line and the free throw line respectively. Iverson is averaging 27.0 ppg, 6.9 apg, 2.9 rpg, 2.1 spg while shooting .453, .331 and .815. The shooting numbers are basically a wash. Iverson ranks among the league leaders in scoring, assists and steals, bettering Roy by significant margins in each category. Numbers aren't everything but they can't be entirely dismissed, either. Unlike most other writers, my tendency is not to immediately crown a young player as an MVP candidate unless he is really a dominant player (Paul is ahead of Roy in scoring and assists and shooting better from all three areas). Roy is playing very well but he is not the best player in the NBA right now, nor is he one of the top five or ten. He's close but he's not quite there yet, whether you go by numbers or you just watch him and compare his skill set with the other elite players.

At Monday, January 28, 2008 11:10:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

anymous reggie

5. tim duncan consitent team is a top 4 team and he has been playing great of late and is always consistent but not the mvp this year.
4. kevin garnett he has brought alot of energy too boston and stabilized that team defensively and anchor the team offensively as well. but he has two all stars next to him i dont think he is mvp because he has more around him then james kobe paul.

3. lebron james the best player along with kobe bryant in the league is a great player that cleveland is terrible without and could be made a case for mvp but is not clevand has 24 wins kobe has 27 paul has 32 they virtually have the same supporting cast he in a weaker confrence.

t1. chris paul kobe bryant.
kobe has played team ball most of the season really all season letting the game to him but since bynum has gone out he has forced the issue a bit and lakers fans should be a little concerned they need to pass the ball around and get players involved phil jackson echoed that yesterday they cant just watch kobe and stand on the otherside of the court. he has slipped to because they have been 1-4 in last 5

chris paul is mvp to me his team is 32-12 noone thought that and he is haveing a great season and really doesnt play with another great player he is the black steve nash. he gets players involved makes players better and is great himself . he has to be one of the top guys the hornets number 1 seed 45 games into season no one thought that he is a better scorer than nash and is as good a passer as well nash won 2 mvp at point not putting up 20ppg so why cant paul he is the man right now.

At Tuesday, January 29, 2008 5:14:00 AM, Blogger David Friedman said...


I rate Paul ahead of Nash now but I didn't think that Nash should have won two MVPs and I don't think that Paul should win this year's MVP. Nash was a top five player in those years, as is Paul this season. Kobe is still the best player but LeBron has closed the gap to the point that it is almost a dead heat.

That said, the media wants to give the award to KG and will probably do so unless the Celtics fall off the map with KG playing (losses while KG sits probably increase the chances of him winning the MVP, whether or not his absence had much to do with the loss--if Rondo had not gotten hurt versus Orlando then Boston probably would have won that game even without KG).

At Tuesday, January 29, 2008 10:23:00 AM, Blogger madnice said...

Im not saying Roy is MVP at all. You take him off the Trail Blazers and they definitely arent in first place. He has won and taken over games by himself. The Trail Blazers have nice young players but Iverson has Melo (an all star) and Camby. You know the numbers of these players. Ironically the Blazers are in first. I love Iverson but he is florishing because he knows that he doesnt have to do it all by himself.

And there is no way Duncan and Howard should be ahead of Paul right now. You could easily put Paul first. He has the numbers and his team is leading the conference. The New Orleans Hornets....the New Orleans Hornets lead the West. What? No one would of thought that and Paul is without doubt the main reason.

At Tuesday, January 29, 2008 4:03:00 PM, Blogger David Friedman said...


I agree that if you take Roy off of the Blazers that they would not be in first place but you could say a similar thing about almost every All-Star in the NBA (other than Arenas, apparently). I have Roy as an All-Star and a top 15 player but not as a top 10 player; in other words, I'd probably put him on the All-NBA Third Team but not the first two teams. Roy has had five games in which he scored fewer than 10 points. The Blazers won two of them anyway, showing that he is not completely indispensable. The other three times came in losses against the Spurs (twice) and Dallas, which raises at least a little red flag regarding his production against elite teams. Maybe that sounds like nitpicking but you are asking me to move Roy from the top 15 to the top 10 and the top 10 is pretty heady company. Iverson's season low is 13 (twice) and he has scored at least 21 points in every game in January.

Regardless of who Iverson has alongside of him, he is putting up better numbers across the board than Roy. You could also argue that it is tougher to put up big numbers playing alongside other scorers. Iverson could probably still average 30 ppg in a different situation. I just can't see taking Roy ahead of him right now. I like Roy's game a lot but he is just not an MVP level player at this point, despite what a lot of people are saying. Just because a team is successful for half a season does not mean that their best player is automatically a league MVP candidate.


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