Wednesday, May 7

Defending Kobe’s MVP

Earlier today the NBA announced Kobe Bryant as the winner of the NBA's 2007-08 MVP award and I think I speak for most Lakers fans when I say it’s about freaking time.

Kobe gathered 1,105 points from the 126 sportswriters and broadcasters who sit on the MVP voting panel to best runner up Chris Paul who finished with 889 points.

The 216 point difference between KB24 and CP3 seems a little large for an MVP race that felt almost as controversial as a Democratic nomination election, but the contest looks more like a Huckebee beat down when you compare Kobe’s eighty-two first place votes to Chris Paul’s twenty-eight.

Despite this resounding win for Kobe, television and radio analysts harp repeatedly that Chris Paul was robbed. Now I agree that Chris Paul deserved serious consideration for the Maurice Podoloff Trophy but the main argument analysts fall back on – that Chris Paul did more with less help – is pure baloney.

First of all, Chris Paul has a fellow All-Star in his frontcourt in David West and a former three-time All-Star in the sharp-shooting Peja Stojakovic. Kobe Bryant? Nope, he doesn’t have a single other All-Star in the Forum Blue and Gold and the only former All-Star on the Lakers squad, Pau Gasol, played beside Kobe for barely a third of the season.

Furthermore, Kobe was the main constant on a squad that had few after losing Most Improved Player candidate Andrew Bynum to a season-ending knee injury midway through the year and adjusted his game to integrate Pau Gasol in the midst of the most competitive playoff race in NBA history. A race that the Lakers won, by the way. And lest we forget, a team can hardly do “more” than post the best record in its conference.

During that same period the Hornets also played well and finished second in the Western Conference, buoyed by the addition of Bonzi Wells, whose inclusion as a role player did not necessitate a dramatic change in Chris Paul’s style of play. No doubt CP3 and the Hornets also owe some of their success to the hardiness of their starting lineup, which avoided serious injury.

Obviously you can’t penalize Chris Paul for his good fortune in playing with another All-Star and a healthy supporting cast. But Kobe did more by leading his team to the better record and he also had less – fewer All-Stars and fewer healthy teammates. The MVP voting panel understood that the Chris Paul-does-more-with-less argument is phonier than a Hillary Clinton smile and that’s why Kobe received more first place votes – by a landslide.


Anonymous said...

Kobe Bryant is one of the best players in the NBA, but Kevin Garnett should have been the MVP. Although he scored less points per game, his field goal percentage was .539. Bryant's was only .459. He also averaged 9.2 rebounds per game to Kobe's 7.2. Not to mention, Garnett was the Defensive Player of the Year.


Anonymous said...

Kobe Bryant is currently the best player in the NBA, not Kevin Garnett. Maybe Bryant's field goal percentage was a little bit lower than Garnett's, but Bryant's average mpg is 40.0 while Garnett's average mpg is 38.0. If Bryant has more playing time then he is bound to take more shots; these extra shots will increase his number of points, and they will also increase the number of missed shots thus lowering Bryant's field goal percentage. Also, the most valuable player is a player that in effect helps to drive his teammates to higher levels of performance. Bryant's average number of assists per game was 6.8 ranking him 7th in the NBA while Garnett's was 3.5 ranking him 29th in the NBA. Yes, Garnett is an amazing worthy of recognition, but Bryant definetly deserves the MVP award.


Anonymous said...

Kevin Garnett may have had a higher field goal percentage and more rebounds, but the MVP is not just the player with the best stats because basketball is a team sport. The MVP is a player that not only excells individually, but also makes his teammates better. Kevin Garnett already has great players in his team with Paul Pierce and Ray Allen, but what made Kobe Bryant the MVP is that he makes his teammates play better through the way he plays.


Anonymous said...


KOBE is the MVP. period.

First of all, Kobe had a lesser talented teamates this year.
-There is only 2 all-star players on that team--Kobe and Gasol. However, Gasol was traded in the mid-season, so Kobe had to do most of the works to to get Laker's good record.
-Now look at Garnett's team. Paul Pierce, Ray Allen, and Sam Cassell. Garnett has 4 all stars with him this season. It shouldn't be a surprise that they have the league best record with 4 all stars on his team. (Althought Cassell is no longer an All star, he was an all star caliber player when he was younger).

Second Kobe played through injuries.
-Kobe broke his pinkie of his shooting hand, but sitll played with his team in the end. He put the surgery in the end because he cares more about his team than his individual injury. And now Kobe is playing through a sore back in the play off. Kobe knows that he can't rest because he is the core of the Laker's. Laker's WILL lose without him.
-Garnett has never went through injury this season. Even if he had, there are better teammates to step up. Actually, more experienced and older teammates. For example, PJ Brown can step up for him.

Third, your comparsion of their stats is totally unjust. Is ridiculous how you compare the stats of a Shooting guard with that of a Power Forward. Is like betting on a fight between a five years old kid and a body builder.
Even if you compare their stats, Kobe's stats over all is wins over Garnett.
-Kobe Wins Free Throw. Kobe-7.6out of 9.1 84%
Garnett3.8 out of 4.7 80%. Not to motion the points difference of the free throws,
-Kobe Wins Assists per game. 5.4 over Garnett's 3.4
-Kobe wins steal per game 1.8 over 1.4
-Kobe Wins Points scored per game with 28.3 over 18.8.
-Kobe wins three points made per game 1.8 over 0.
-Kobe wins minutes played per game 38 over 32.
-Garnet wins Field goal %, and rebounds per game , turn over per game, and block shots per game.

Over All-Kobe 6: Garnett 4.
Kobe WINS if you know how to count your fingers...

Kobe is MVP can also be seen in the play off games.

-Kobe advanced to the Western Finals in 10 games and winning 8 of them.
-Garnett advanced to the EASTERN finals in 14 games..

THe WESTERN teams are MUCH better than Eastern teams. And Garnett led his team to the Eastern Finals in 14 games?, while playing with teams that had worse records teams of West?

Garnett is lucky enough to get his little Defense Trophy..