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Derrick Rose will win MVP. There are better choices.

Mar 24, 2011, 12:20 PM EDT

Sacramento Kings v Chicago Bulls Getty Images

Stan Van Gundy is right — Derrick Rose is going to win the MVP award this year. He has everybody including Michael Jordan’s endorsement. Influential media members are lining up behind him.

The question is: Does he deserve it? Or, more accurately, do others deserve it more?

You can make a good argument for Rose — he is the team leader and best player on the Chicago Bulls, the team that right now is (and very possibly at the end of the season will be) the top seed in the East. His ability to get to the rim and finish — through at times impossibly small spaces — is the best in the league. He carries the Bulls offense averaging 24.9 points and 7.8 assists per game. And where would the Bulls be without him?

But the argument against Rose — and really for others — goes like this: What makes Chicago great is their defense, and Rose is not an integral part of that (the Bulls defense gets better when Rose goes off and C.J. Watson comes on). Rose is integral to their offense, but the Bulls offense is 13th in the league (in points per possession). It’s average, it’s not efficient. Rose averages 24.9 points per game but he has to take 20.2 shots per game to get there.

Basically, this is the 2001 Allen Iverson wins MVP scenario all over again, argues Neil Paine over at Basketball-Reference.

All told, Rose and Iverson’s MVP campaigns are almost eerily similar. Each player was worth approximately 6-7 points of on-court offensive rating above average for a middling offensive team, and each was essentially an average defender on a very strong defensive squad. Each man’s role was to carry the offense (almost single-handedly — with apologies to Luol Deng, Carlos Boozer, & Aaron McKie) and let his surrounding role players handle their defensive duties.

Iverson’s 2001 Sixers team made the NBA finals. Bulls fans would welcome a similar outcome.

The guy who will come in second in the MVP balloting this season is Dwight Howard, but statistics and Stan Van Gundy say he is more deserving. (To be up front, if I had a vote this would be my guy.) He is averaging 23.1 points and 14.2 rebounds a game shooting 60 percent (Rose is 44 percent), but he is also the primary reason the Magic are an elite defensive team. He is integral to everything the Magic do. Where are the Magic without Howard?

But the Magic will be the four seed, the Bulls will be the one seed. That influences people. So does the fact that Rose makes plays with real flair and style, much more so than Howard. Much like Iverson used to.

But if you’re going to consider Rose the MVP, then you also have to consider Russell Westbrook, since they have about the same stats and impact on the game, argues Tom Ziller at SB Nation.

The basic per-game statistics for Rose and Westbrook are seriously similar. Rose averages 24.9 points and 7.8 assists per game; Westbrook is at 22.2 and 8.3. Each shoots 44 percent from the floor and a touch below average — 34 percent for Rose, 33 percent for Westbrook — from long-range. Westbrook draws almost eight free throws a game and shoots them quite well; Rose draws seven FTs on average, and shoots them quite well. Westbrook averages 4.6 rebounds per game; Rose, 4.2. Westbrook gives up 3.9 turnovers, Rose 3.4. Just under two steals for Westbrook, just more than one for Rose.

Use advanced metrics and the same numbers play out, maybe Rose is a little better than Westbrook but not much. And if so, why is Rose the runaway winner and Westbrook not even considered? Ziller’s argument is that Rose is the MVP because he has a good narrative — we like the resurgence of the Bulls (we really do), we like that he has stepped up to be the leader on that team and improved his game. We like what he and the Bulls symbolize — hard work and defense — in a season that was supposed to be about the Miami Heat and their egos, about Carmelo Anthony and his trade demands.

But is that what MVP should be about, Ziller asks?

If you’re handing your support to Rose without considering Westbrook and the others strongly, know that you’re not awarding the Most Valuable Player trophy, you’re awarding a kindergarten gold star for a totally awesome story or the Man Booker prize or something. Awarding MVP trophies based on warm fuzzies should be reserved for youth soccer, not the highest levels of sport.

LeBron James is the two-time defending MVP and is putting up monster numbers again. Dirk Nowitzki gets overlooked but he is having a huge year and the Mavericks are in the thick of things in the West. Dwyane Wade, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant can and should be in the discussion.

And that’s my issue — that this discussion seems over. Rose is the guy. When he wins it will not be some great travesty of justice — he has had a good season on a very good team. But there are better choices to be considered.

  1. fx1718 - Mar 24, 2011 at 12:43 PM

    Kurt Helin,

    Question.. Have you ever watched a Bulls game? It’s not all about your precious PER. Get your head out of your butt.

    • mytthor - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:05 PM

      Umm, PER isn’t even mentioned in this article. If you think Rose is the MVP, that’s great, but why sweat a writer for (A) commenting that it’s dumb that everyone seems to have already made up their mind with almost a quarter of the season left; and (B) Stating that Rose is deserving but he would personally choose another? Not only does your guy have to win, but no one can even consider others?

      And by the way; only one player in the last 30 years has won MVP without averaging 25 points a game, Nash, and he was averaging 12 assists. Not 7. And most people now seem to think his MVPs were BS. No one’s ever done it with that low of a scoring average without averaging a double double.

      You’re absolutely right; stats aren’t everything. But when you have a guy who’s stats are good, but not great, who’s done what Rose has done for his team this year, it’s not hard to make a case that he should win; it’s hard to make a case that others are idiots for suggesting otherwise.

  2. purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 12:52 PM

    This is a really dumb blog on the part of the author. First of all, the job a point guard is charged with IS running the offense and distributing the ball, not being the best guard defender on the team. Second of all, there’s a HUGE difference between what Rose brings to the Bulls vs. what Westbrook brings to his team that doesn’t show up in a box score or rotogeek stat sheet and that’s the combination of energy, leadership and a sense of invincibility.

    Rose’s teammates clearly feel that as long as Derrek is at the controls, the team will win. If that’s not being an MVP, I don’t know what is.

    • musilly - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:44 PM

      Yes, a PG is supposed to run the offense and yes, a center is typically more important to team defense than a PG is (even more so nowadays, with the hand-checking rules). One expects more out of a Center defensively than one does out of a PG. Fine. So the defensive roles are not symmetrical. BUT–that does not mean that we should therefore not reward a Center at the expense of a PG when it comes to MVP discussions. You’re saying something like, PGs aren’t expected to be defensive stoppers so let’s ignore the fact that Rose isn’t a defense stopper. Haha, that’s silly.

      • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 2:05 PM

        musilly… not silly at all. Why do you think that the Bulls signed journeyman Keith Bogans to pair up with Rose in the starting lineup? Because he’s a great #2 (shooting), guard? Think again. They signed Bogans because he’s a good complement to Rose and can guard the opposing teams #2.

        Just as Howard plays better than he is due to his oftentimes physical dominance over opponents, Rose is too short to realistically be expected to guard a much taller dominant #2 guard like Kobe Bryant.

        Once again, the difference between Howard and Rose though is that Rose makes the guys around him much better players. Deng has blossomed after Roses’ arrival after having been largely a huge disappointment prior. Shorty Watson, Keith Bogans and Ronnie Brewer were all considered to be busts/second tier at best players when the Bulls signed them this past offseason, yet all are now an integral part of the teams success, largely due to Roses’ presence.

    • ocgunslinger - Mar 24, 2011 at 6:04 PM


      “Rose’s teammates clearly feel that as long as Derrek is at the controls, the team will win. If that’s not being an MVP, I don’t know what is”. I agree with your statement 100%. I think you can substitute Howard or Bryant into that sentence with the same confidence of accuracy. Howard doesn’t have the support that Rose or Bryant does and if the Magic were the one or two seed he could win easily win…..but then Bryant who plays with many real injuries, is the leadership and floor general with the energy, will and drive for the Lakers who appear to be a very strong contender again. He doesn’t care about the regular season MVP……and even the next MVP award to be given is second to the ring and the 3-peat in his mind.

  3. oldhighs - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:02 PM

    Kurt Helin writes a backhanded article about Derrick Rose and the Bulls? No wai!

  4. lebronsinsecurity - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:02 PM


    We get it, you absolutely love you some Dwight Howard..

  5. rdssc - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:07 PM

    ROSE = MVP
    Suck it Kurt…..

  6. samkraft - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:18 PM

    This is just another example of the author playing devil’s advocate to attract readers. For example, the only reason I read this is because the headline suggesting better candidates than Rose jumped out at me.

    Putting Westbrook on the same level as Rose is ludicrous. Have you watched the Bulls this year? DRose brings leadership, coachability, intensity and a clutch gene that no player in the league can match this year.

    DRose is the MVP. Watch the whole game on Friday and tell me Westbrook is as good as Rose.

    • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 3:28 PM

      Great post, samkraft! TWO thumbs up! When Rose is in the game, he simply commands the floor… period! Westbrook is a nice player for sure, but as pointed out by another poster, he isn’t the big dog on his team like Rose is on the Bulls.

  7. mickdamill - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:22 PM

    There is no better choice for MVP right now other than Rose. He is clearly the best player in the NBA this season. Quit focusing only on Dwight and maybe you could see that. We all know Howard is the best big man in the game but he’s not deserving of the MVP this year….. Sorry. Until Dwight can improve his post game, I dont think we will see an MVP for him anytime soon.

  8. oldhighs - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:25 PM

    To anyone who watches Bulls games, the “Derrick Rose doesn’t play defense” thing is laughable.

    But of course, some people really do believe that the stats tell them everything they need to know.

  9. savocabol1 - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:31 PM

    Every single year you can make an argument for a handfull of guys being MVP

    • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:41 PM

      savoc… yes, that’s true (i.e., that every year there usually are other candidates who would be worthy of winning an MVP award), but to me the two key variables in voting for who should are: 1) How much better do you make your teammates around you as a result of your play?; and 2) How many wins did you mean to your team in any given year?

      Luol Deng was widely ridiculed in Chicago until Rose came along; now Deng is being widely regarded as one the NBA’s elite defenders. It was Rose who makes him that much better. The Bulls too have gone long stretches of time without Noah and without Boozer, yet continued to win (again the “Rose” factor to keep the engine running smoothly). How many other NBA teams can go long stretches of time without two of their five starters and not miss a beat?

      As for Howard? I’d make the same point that I made about Shaq back when he was in his prime. The point being that when you are THAT much more physically imposing and dominant than the guy who you go up against night in and night out, it’s not because you’re an MVP per se’; it’s just because you’re the biggest dog in the room.

      • hnirobert3 - Mar 24, 2011 at 2:09 PM

        “As for Howard? I’d make the same point that I made about Shaq back when he was in his prime. The point being that when you are THAT much more physically imposing and dominant than the guy who you go up against night in and night out, it’s not because you’re an MVP per se’; it’s just because you’re the biggest dog in the room.”

        Can’t agree with this enough. The fact the Howard has been winning DPOY awards is a travesty as well. Who is he guarding? What other centers are there who are on his level? Whereas (*putting my homer hat on*) guys like LeBron and Wade, as well as others, obviously, are covering the other elite scorers in the game.

      • borderline1988 - Mar 24, 2011 at 6:26 PM


        Wow, you clearly have no basketball IQ at all.

        Howard is by far and away the best defender in the league because he controls the paint. He is such a shot-blocking threat and physical presence in the paint that opposing guards are literally nervous to drive to the basket. That allows Orlando’s other players to more aggressively defend on the perimeter, because they know that if the offensive player gets a step on them, they will usually just pull up for a lower percentage shot rather than go to the basket where Howard is lurking.
        Besides for Howard, Orlando’s defenders are as weak as they come. Jason Richardson, Gilbert Arenas, and Turkoglu(!) are all very poor defenders. Nelson and Redick aren’t horrible but definitely not that good. Yet, they look good on the defensive side of the ball.
        Howard is like a one-man top-5 defender. He’s really that unbelievable on the defensive end.

        Derrick Rose, in his best season ever, is leading an offense that is ranked 13th in the league, and you can argue that there are other scorers on this team.

        Howard is Orlando’s defense, and they’re a top5 defensive team. Honestly, you could stick Howard on any team in the league right now, and that team would be one of the best defensive teams in the NBA.
        Calling Howard an overrated defender is by far the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard in my life.

      • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 6:38 PM

        hniro… Everyone here can see a windbag like you puffing up your chest and trying to insult anyone who dares post anything against your precious Magic.

        Either you are incredibly naive in thinking that Howard is right now more of a difference maker than Rose, Bryant, La Bum or for that matter even Duncan, or you should be out right now selling everything you own to put your bet down on your Magic to win it all this season! (in other words, why not put your money up where your mouth is running?)!

  10. pudgalvin - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:34 PM

    The C.J Watson defensive argument is a little distorted here. Watson plays roughly 15 minutes a game at the start of the second and fourth, when virtually every other team’s second unit is in. On top of that, he plays most of the time with Asik, who has had a huge impact on the Bulls defense. Does anyone really think, at this point, that Watson is a better defender than Rose?

    As of a couple weeks ago, Orlando’s team defense was actually worse when Howard was on the floor, essentially using the same argument that Kurt uses against Rose. I’d still venture to say Howard is a pretty good defender.

    Also, last I checked, Westbrook plays on the same team as Kevin Durant. Not to take anything away from Westbrook, but if Rose played with one of the three best scorers in the league, I think he might average a tick over 25 points a game, not to mention his assists. I’ll grant you the efficiency knock on Rose, but this article looks at players in a vacuum. If that’s how the MVP was awarded, Kobe or Lebron would win every year.

    • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 3:31 PM

      If Shorty Watson was the Bulls starting point guard, the Bulls wouldn’t even be sniffing .500 at this point in the season, much less challenging to be the top seed in the East. Shorty has grown into being an above average second unit guy, but he ain’t no Derrek Rose!

  11. mharenza - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:34 PM

    Whoa, whoa…..Deng, Boozer, and the rest of the Bulls are far superior to the supporting cast of Iverson’s Sixers. It can’t even be compared. That being said, I would have no problem with either Rose or Howard being MVP.

  12. mada949 - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:36 PM


    I couldn’t agree with you more. Everyone is fawning over D-rose this season, and they should because he is a great player and an elite PG. To me, however, the “Most Valuable Player” is the guy whom, without, the team would be lottery-bound.

    Taking a look at Cleveland this year shows that Lebron deserved his two previous awards. Following the same logic, this is why Lebron, Wade, Westbrook etc. shouldn’t really be in the running. On a team like the Bulls, one built on defense, and one that also has Joakim Noah and Carlos Boozer, it is hard to argue they would be lottery-bound without Derrick.

    The Magic fit the bill, though, and Howard has been incredible this year. His post game has also improved. He should have won MVP this year and its a shame he isn’t being given honest consideration.

    • pudgalvin - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:47 PM

      The problem is that the Magic are a 4th place team and look destined for a second round exit. Regardless of whether or not that should matter, it does matter.

    • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:52 PM

      mada… This is just a pet peeve of mine not at all aimed at you, but I for one have grown weary of all the NBA “lottery” hype. We ALL know now that in most years any picks beyond #3-#5 don’t result in the selection of franchise players and that WAY too many teams by default become lottery teams simply because they miss the playoffs.

      Just look at the 2008 NBA draft; there was one and ONLY one true impact player available and taken (Blake Griffin). So your team gets a lottery pick; big whoop! In todays collegiate “one and done” era, just having a lottery pick usually isn’t much different than getting the chance to kiss your sister at a family event.

      You make an excellent point though about La Bum James and what his exit meant to the hapless Cavs this year. Per my previous post though, what you fail to mention is that the Bulls went 30 games without Noah and another 20+ without Boozer, yet continued to find a way to win this year (and that way was largely due to Derrek Rose picking up the slack by keeping shuffling lineups running smoothly).

      During last years free agency period, the other three guards who are paired with Rose (Keith Bogins, Ronnie Brewer and Shorty Watson), were all considered to be NBA busts. Why all of a sudden are they considered to now be key members of the Bulls success thusfar? Derrek Rose, that’s why; Rose makes that much of an impact on making the guys around him better. That’s why he’s the MVP this season IMO.

    • savocabol1 - Mar 24, 2011 at 2:09 PM

      mada, you can’t relly compare this year’s Cavs to last year’s. There were 6 remaining people this year that were on last year’s roster, of which 3 have been hurt for the majority of the year. It is not like the Cavs have the same team minus Lebron. Because Lebron left the Cavs at the last possible second he could they had no opportunity to acquire a free agent to replace him. We can argue that they should have done this when Lebron was holding them in the offseason but that is a different argument in itself.

      I am not saying that the Cavs would be anywhere near their record last year if they had healthy player, but I am saying comparing last years to this years is apples to oranges. These people that argue how much of an MVP Lebron should be because of the Cavs record simply ignore the facts.

      • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 2:23 PM

        savic,,, yes and no. you make a valid point as to the true status of the Cavs roster this season, but one factor that’s not been brought up yet is the fact that then Cavs GM Danny Ferry bent over backwards to try and appease James and give the club enough to try and push them over the top.

        Point being? Because of management’s well intended roster moves aimed at appeasing James, they also made several personnel decisions that I’m sure they wouldn’t have had they thought that James was going to leave them high and dry. In other words, part of the James leaving effect was leaving behind parts of a dysfunctional post James roster that otherwise wouldn’t have been there going into this season.

    • mickdamill - Mar 24, 2011 at 2:42 PM

      How has Dwight not been given honest consideration for MVP? He is one of the few players analysts are talking about other than Rose. It’s just to majority of people Rose is the clear choice for MVP this year, plain and simple.

  13. davidly - Mar 24, 2011 at 1:41 PM

    I think that there should be no MVP for a given season unless the player in question garners an overwhelming majority (say, nearly unanimous) of the the votes.

    • hnirobert3 - Mar 24, 2011 at 2:11 PM

      That will never work since unfortunately there will never be another Michael Jordan (Bird and Magic cancel each other out since the vote would’ve been close, same with Russell and Chamberlain, even though Russell was the better player).

      • davidly - Mar 24, 2011 at 2:25 PM

        So there’d only be one every once in a great while. Big deal.

        Think about it: The question would be “Was there an MVP that year?” you’d get a “Hells yeah!” instead of the answer to the question “Who was MVP that year?” to which the answer would be: “Hmm. I dunno. That might’ve been the year it was Skibby MaRoo.”

        Some years just don’t warrant it. It ain’t a tragedy.

    • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 2:29 PM

      “Most Valuable Player for (insert year # here), means exactly that… i.e., most valuable player FOR THAT YEAR. It’s not most valuable of all time, of the decade, in the history of the players position or/or team or anything else. It’s simply the one player in any given league and any given year that means the most to his club winning, even if the winner is determined by only a margin of a single vote.

      • davidly - Mar 24, 2011 at 2:30 PM

        Okay then, tell me: What does “most valuable” mean?

      • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 3:07 PM

        davidly… MVP to a stat geek means “most impressive stats”, but that’s not necessarily the most valuable player. My definition of MVP is: “How much better did any player clearly make his surrounding teammates in any given year?; and 2) How many games did that player impact winning either directly (stats), or indirectly (leadership and making his teammates better), in any given year?

        With respect to stat geeks, I vividly remember how World B. Free, then of the San Diego Clippers, one year went through the league like a runaway buzz saw, but the team wasn’t very good so Free’s stats were more a function of him having to throw up a lot more shots because he had no supporting cast that could score.

        With respect to Rose, he’s in essence functioning as BOTH the Bulls starting PG and SG, because journeyman Bogans (who starts opposite Rose), is primarily the Bulls #2 guard only because of his good defense. So while Rose may not play a pivotal role on defense, he not only is the primary distributor of the ball on offense, but he’s also the teams primary shooting guard too.

        Just how much better are Rose’s teammates because of his presence? Bogans, Watson and Brewer (the other three guards in Tibideau’s 2 five player rotations, were all signed off the NBA scrapheap and had little interest from other teams either as free agents or via trade (Shorty Watson was acquired via trade). Now take starting C Noah out for 30 games and starting PF Boozer for another 20+ and not miss a beat and what you have is Derrek Rose, MVP.

      • davidly - Mar 24, 2011 at 3:18 PM

        I agree with your criteria and would vote for Rose as well. Though some might say that one should include less dominant teams with one player carrying them; which is a fair argument.

        I just think that either, 1: They should go back to having only the players vote, or 2: The person should be so obviously valuable that even the Kurt Helin’s of the world wouldn’t dispute it.

        I feel that the pool that gets the privilege to vote is pissy, and would therefore prefer no one get the award. And again, it wouldn’t be a tragedy.

  14. hnirobert3 - Mar 24, 2011 at 2:06 PM

    My guess: Kurt’s wife left him to be a part of Rose’s Lady Pyramid.

  15. patsfan401 - Mar 24, 2011 at 2:16 PM

    I for 1, believe the only other real canidate is D. Howard. Westbrook isnt close. Thats Durant’s team not his. Kobe wasnt himself all year, despite good numbers, and his play has been up & down until after the all star break. So should voters just forget how he struggled early on with Gasol & Jackson calling him out? No. And if you want to be technical, I’d say Bynum has more to do with their Lakers resurgence than Kobe ‘back door’ Bryant. Lebron’s got D Wade & Bosh. Lebron & Wade cancel each other out in my view because, Who do they want taking the last shot? Not Bron and thats as valueable as it gets. And Wade’s numbers are down, too.

    That leaves the only player in the league who has been doing it game in, game out. Putting his ENTIRE team on his back the whole season, D.Rose. And you actually make his case by arhuing against him. You his efficent numbers arent spectacular. Well, if he had the supporting cast of everyone you THINK are better chioces for MVP, those numbers would be higher/better as the offense burden wouldnt weigh as heavy on the young guy. Just a thought.

    Lastly, you I guess you MUST ONLY equate defense to steal and blocks. Because if you watched any Bulls gms you’d know he is doing exactly what the defensive schemes call for. He doesnt allow penetrating guards/wing players get into the paint. Thats his job not going for steals leaving someone behind him compromised. Man, you guys just seems like you have an agenda against this guy.

    Go Bulls…SAWYMO Helin!

  16. Lateef - Mar 24, 2011 at 2:21 PM

    Don’t get this Rose/AI comparison. Rose is an elite point guard with size and AI was an elite 2 guard without size. They also aren’t the same defensively either because the Bulls don’t worry about Rose getting posted up, but the Sixers worried about AI getting posted up. Which is why they got Snow because he was a big point guard and he would check the 2 guards.

    Also the Bulls have a lot more talent than the Sixers did when they went to the final. Only Mutombo and AI could have started on the Bulls. Snow would be the backup point, McKie is a benchwarmer and the other eight players would be lucky to be on the roster.

    I also don’t get the Lebron and Carmelo comparison either. LeBron lied/misled the Cavs into believing he would resign only to leave high and dry. Carmelo told the Nuggets he wasn’t going to resign in Denver and wanted to play with the Knicks. By giving them the heads up instead of misleading them the Nuggets went out and got some talent for him. Look at it this way, who enjoys watching their team play Cavs or Nuggets fans?

    • hnirobert3 - Mar 24, 2011 at 3:14 PM

      “I also don’t get the Lebron and Carmelo comparison either. LeBron lied/misled the Cavs into believing he would resign only to leave high and dry. Carmelo told the Nuggets he wasn’t going to resign in Denver and wanted to play with the Knicks. By giving them the heads up instead of misleading them the Nuggets went out and got some talent for him. Look at it this way, who enjoys watching their team play Cavs or Nuggets fans?”

      You’re way off on this. LBJ never gave any type of inclination that he was going to stay with the Cavs. Whenever a player decides to not discuss his contract with his current team, in a nice way, he’s saying that he’s not going to stay. What athlete, in todays world of career ending injuries, declines an extention? Would you have preferred if he went the Melo way and asked for a trade? Personally, I think that would’ve been worse and he wouldn’t have been trade by Dan Gilbert, who is obviously a very stubborn man.

      Also, the reason the Nuggets fans enjoy watching their team more than the Cavs fans do is because the Nuggets had talent on their team aside from their superstar. Obviously Danillo, Felton, Chandler, etc. have made an impact, but the Nuggets had a solid core of guys with Nene, JR, K-Mart and Lawson.

      • Lateef - Mar 24, 2011 at 3:59 PM

        So the Cavs wouldn’t have been better off trading LeBron and stockpiling picks and young talent like Denver did?

        Also, if the Cav fans thought he was going to leave, why did they start burning his jersey minutes after the decision? Why did Gilbert say he had to watch The Decision to find out if LBJ was staying.

        “What athlete, in todays world of career ending injuries, declines an extention?”

        How about D-Wade? How about Paul Pierce? The reason why they didn’t think LBJ was leaving is because he didn’t say he was leaving when they asked him. If you’ve made $20 mil a year for 9 years in a row (not counting endorsements) you have no problem waiting it out.

        “Would you have preferred if he went the Melo way and asked for a trade?”

        If I was a Cavs fan yes. Definitely. Watching Felton, Gallo, Chandler, and Mozgov play is a lot better than watching Anthony Parker and Antawn Jamison play. I also would prefer the draft picks they got. Melo’s honesty gave Denver ahead start, while Cleveland is hoping for #1 pick in a weak draft.

  17. hnirobert3 - Mar 24, 2011 at 2:57 PM

    So there’d only be one every once in a great while. Big deal.

    Think about it: The question would be “Was there an MVP that year?” you’d get a “Hells yeah!” instead of the answer to the question “Who was MVP that year?” to which the answer would be: “Hmm. I dunno. That might’ve been the year it was Skibby MaRoo.”

    Some years just don’t warrant it. It ain’t a tragedy.


    Here’s an example: two years ago, the first year LBJ won, he won MVP because he dragged a bunch of bums to 60+ wins. That same year, Wade had his best season ever and won the scoring title and Kobe had a great season also. So because there were three legit candidates for the award, does that mean that there shouldn’t have been an award?

    Or are you saying that if it’s a year like this where there are 5+ potential candidates, depending on who you ask, there shouldn’t be an award?

    IMO, Rose is the clearcut MVP. His team is not in the top 5 East teams without him.

    • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 3:17 PM

      Let’s look at the Bulls pre-Rose with Heinrich as their starting point guard running the offense: 2007-08, 33-49 and did not make the playoffs. 2006-07, 49-33 won their first playoff series, eliminated in the second. 2005-06, 41-41, one and quickly done in the playoffs.

      With Rose? 2008-09, 41-41, one and quickly done in the playoffs. 2009-10, 41-41 again, and one and done in the playoffs again. Then the Bulls blew up the roster and brought in a new supporting cast and just look what Rose has been able to lead the team to thusfar this season. I agree; Rose is the clearcut MVP this season.

    • davidly - Mar 24, 2011 at 3:26 PM

      He carried his team, sure. But no team can win 60 games with a bunch of bums.

      >>>Or are you saying that if it’s a year like this where there are 5+ potential candidates, depending on who you ask, there shouldn’t be an award?<<<

      That's exactly what I'm saying.

      • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 3:40 PM

        davidly.. the win an MVP award against stiff competition make the award MORE meaningful, not less. To win an MVP virtually unopposed is like saying that a two legged man killed all of his competition in one legged man butt kicking contest.

        I could see players vote being somehow factored in from players that are in the same conference with those competing for the award, but when players from the other conference only play those guys 2-3 times a year it’s like giving the baseball writers in a one team city a vote for any award/honor deciding the fate of a player in a different league that those writers only occasionally see on TV or during limited inter-league play.

        Whoops! I’m bad! That’s exactly what baseball does and that’s exactly one of the biggest flaws in selecting players for baseball awards/honors too!

      • hnirobert3 - Mar 24, 2011 at 3:47 PM

        How many games have the Cavs won without LBJ? Don’t give me Verajao is hurt and they lost Shaq as excuses either.

      • davidly - Mar 24, 2011 at 3:49 PM

        You make a good point, though I’m pretty sure that all the players in the NBA have two legs.

      • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 6:20 PM

        hnero…. I didn’t know that Shaq was lost! I did know however, that he’s been collecting big checks as an MIA in exile, simply because of his massive size though!

    • davidly - Mar 24, 2011 at 3:53 PM

      >>>How many games have the Cavs won without LBJ? Don’t give me Verajao is hurt and they lost Shaq as excuses either.<<<

      How many players do the Cavs have from last year?

    • lnah - Mar 24, 2011 at 9:20 PM

      hnirobert3, the Bulls don’t make the playoffs without D. Rose. Nowhere near.

      • hnirobert3 - Mar 25, 2011 at 8:13 AM

        They’d definitely have a hard time considering their scoring issues without Rose, who has been carrying them a lot, but I still think they’re better than the bottom tier teams without him. This is considering Boozer and Noah are healthy as well.

  18. patsfan401 - Mar 24, 2011 at 3:03 PM

    When LeBron won the MVPs was the East was a much weaker conference, too. I dont see how Lebron’s in the equation at all. He’s putting up large numbers but his team probably wont surpass last years Cavs win total.

  19. otisls - Mar 24, 2011 at 3:51 PM

    Tim Duncan gets my vote for MVP; his new role and continued commitment to his team have led the Spurs to the best record in the NBA; I just hope he gets healthy in time for the playoffs.

    • ocgunslinger - Mar 24, 2011 at 6:41 PM

      Duncan is so overlooked but he also has a few very established players with an outstanding coach who knows how to use the talent. Duncan just doesn’t stand out with Parker and Gino also playing equally key rolls. They all just keep winning.

      • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 7:06 PM

        Duncan doesn’t stand out because he’s a sincere, humble guy who doesn’t blow his own horn in order to self-promote himself, and of course he plays in only about the 49th largest media market in the country (and as such doesn’t get the media exposure guys in Chicago, New York, Miami and LA get). I just hope he gets healthy in plenty of time in order to help the Spurs take down the pompous Lake Show.

  20. icu84bs - Mar 24, 2011 at 4:35 PM

    LeBron James is the best player, hands down. At 27ppg-7rpg-7apg he stands well above the rest, no other player is even at 25-5-5. LBJ is also a 1st team defender. Every GM would take LBJ first for their team if given the choice.

    That being said, the MVP has several criteria to be considered and D. Rose will win this year. He should probably share the trophy with his new coach, Chicago’s defence is the reason they went from a decent team last year to a very good team this year. Cheers.

  21. patsfan401 - Mar 24, 2011 at 4:51 PM

    Well the nay-sayers could believe what they want. FACT of the matter is…..he is the MVP…..ahahhahahaahaaha! kick rocks losers!

  22. albie23 - Mar 24, 2011 at 4:52 PM

    People are never satisfied! Rose is the MVP hands down. He is the “Man” on his team. He’s carried that team without Boozer and without Noah. Westbrook is a great player but his team doesnt rely on him like the Bulls do on Rose. Brsides, Westbrook has had Durant all year. Howard has good players around him but can’t make them better, not to mention that with the game on the line he’d more than likely lose it at the free-throw line. How can someone be MVP when you can’t count on them when it’s all or nothing?

  23. purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 7:03 PM

    Is anyone on this forum willing to volunteer to talk borderline1988 off the tall bridge or ledge of a very tall building he’ll be standing on getting ready to jump after Howard flees plastic Orlando for the greener pastures of New York, New Jersey or LA when he becomes a free agent after the 2012 season?

    If borderline1988 lives in or near Orlando at that time, I’ll volunteer to drive him to the bridge just about a half an hour south of St. Petersburg (that way he won’t have to worry about his car or a borrowed car getting towed after he takes the plunge). It’s a great jumping off spot for the emotionally depressed and bewildered.

    We’re witnessing a replay of La Bum James’ final 2 years in Cleveland (i.e., “I love playing in (insert city name here)!” Then the reality sets in that management hasn’t put enough pieces around you to make a strong championship run (much less more than one), and when that Russian billionaire who owns the Nets comes a callin’, Howard will be packing his suitcases just as La Bum did when Miami came a callin’!!!

    • borderline1988 - Mar 24, 2011 at 7:27 PM

      Lol I live in Toronto and I cheer for the Raptors. Which is ironic because the Magic have KO’ed the Raps from the playoffs twice in the past decade, inlcuding the best Raptors team in history (when they won the division in 2006/07 i think).
      I won’t be jumping off any bridges soon or the CN Tower for that matter. I already did when Stoudemire, McGrady, Carter, and Chris Bosh skipped town for nothing in return.

      I have one of those defense first attitudes, and players like Howard should get more credit. I hate Kevin Garnett, but there’s no question that he was the key cog in Boston’s championship back in 2008.
      Too often, high volume scorers in big markets on successful team wins the MVP. But in terms of overall value – I’d take Howard over Rose anyday.

      • rapmusicmademedoit - Mar 24, 2011 at 7:52 PM

        too tough to keep good guy’s up there, i love Toronto Carnival, beautiful people, place.

      • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 8:03 PM

        Oh yeah, borderline1988? If you really live in Toronto, why ain’t there any “‘ehs?” at the end of your sentences? Not one lousy one, eh?!!! (LOL!)

        Good post though; you indeed would make a mess on the street if you were able to find away to escape the cage at the top of the CN Tower in order to jump (SPLAT!)!

        As for your Raptors repeated failures to get anything back in return for their free agent stars? Now that your Loonies aren’t so depressed against the US Dollar, that may change soon if new owners step forward, but in the mean time just exactly what did you expect from a basketball operation management team comprised of public service pensioners? (LOL!… again!!).

      • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 8:13 PM

        rapmusic… I’ll second your review of Toronto. One of the cleanest and safest big cities I’ve ever been to (and I’ve traveled extensively for business throughout my career).

        The main problem Toronto used to have was the weakness of the Looney to the US Dollar, but as of today the Looney is actually worth MORE than the US Dollar. Canadian taxes remain a problem though for retaining professional athletes, but it’s FAR better than it’s ever been in terms of Toronto being able to compete for and retain them.

  24. rapmusicmademedoit - Mar 24, 2011 at 7:12 PM

    I like Rose but I hate the Bulls, he is probably the MVP, but you can make a good argument for
    Kobe, Howard, Dirk, Nash.I would give it to Rose, but Kobe will win Finals MVP.

    The award is a popularity contest too, everyone likes Rose, so do I.

    • purdueman - Mar 24, 2011 at 8:08 PM

      Well, admittedly Noah is a guy who if he’s not on your team people love to hate. Boozer left behind a lot of broken glass in Utah too, but who really cares about anyone who chooses to actually live in Utah? Great place to ski and go visit scenic parks and monuments, but that’s about it.

      Winning though just naturally breeds contempt; that’s not just a Chicago Bulls phenomenon. For example, I HATE to New England Patriots because of all the hot air their gasbag fans generate every year, not because of the team itself per se’. I also HATE University of Michigan football too, again not because of the University per se’, but because per capita they have the biggest a-hole fan base in all of sports.

  25. ddbig77 - Mar 24, 2011 at 8:37 PM

    I think this is a very incorrect assessment. When you look at how great a player is look at what his team is able to do look at the players around him and if he makes them better. Dwight Howard is a great player without question and the best at his position in the league. With that said, can you trust him with the game on the line with his erratic foul shooting? If you took away Durant, would the Thunder be the team they are? I think the answer is no for both players. Not to take anything away from them but both have better players surrounding them than Rose does. Look at Rose’s entire body of work his team is first in a tough eastern conference and I know Boozer and Noah have both missed extensive time this season. The Bulls swept the Heat and they have not missed a beat this season. Rose carries them he scores with the game on the line and went from being a player that could not hit the outside shot to a very dangerous 3 point shooter. Rose has elevated his play to that of a league MVP and the best point guard in the league. I understand praising the other players but to compare a player like Rose who is only 22 to Iverson is ridiculous. Iverson was always a score first player and jacked up tons of shots not to mention that the eastern conference was very weak those years he was so good for the sixers. Rose gets others involved and gets nearly 8 assists a game. How can you say he is not the MVP? Kobe is great but the Lakers have had some slumps this year, Lebron has had trouble beating teams with winning records, Westbrook is an elite player but is nowhere near Rose’s consistency in hitting outside shots, and as good as Howard has been the Magic aren’t better than 4th in the East. If Howard consistently could make his foul shots and he made the guys around him better I can see it but to say Rose isn’t the MVP tells me you don’t understand the NBA. The last time they played the Heat did you see the look on Lebron’s face when he was trying to cover Rose? He was totally confounded and couldn’t stop him with the game on the line Rose took the 2 time MVP to the hoop and won the game. Take away Rose from the Bulls and what do you have? Are they making the playoffs as a 7 or 8 seed? Probably not take away Howard and you still have 3 players in Richardson, Turkoglu, and Nelson that could get them to the playoffs. Nobody has done more with less than Rose period.

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