Basketball Article

LeBron or Giannis: NBA MVP Debate Rages

LeBron or Giannis: NBA MVP Debate Rages Photo: TT
Giannis Antetokounmpo of Team Giannis dribbles past LeBron James of Team LeBron in the first quarter of the NBA All-Star Game

Debate continues to rage about the race to win the 2019-20 NBA Most Valuable Player with ex-Boston Celtics and Oklahoma City Thunder centre Kendrick Perkins the latest to weigh in.

The analysts argue that Milwaukee Bucks’ forward Giannis Antetokounmpo is the raging favourite, but Perkins believes LeBron James deserves the mantle.

Los Angeles Lakers power forward James is a four-time NBA MVP but hasn’t won the award since 2013, but is mounting a case in 2020.

The 35-year-old has been a key part of the Lakers’ 46-13 run which has them in the mix to be top seed in the Western Conference.

James is currently leading the league for assists per game, with 10.6 on average, including a game high of 19, while he has the equal most triple doubles alongside Luka Doncic with 13.

Giannis is clearly the best candidate instead of James, while Houston Rockets guard James Harden is a good shout too.

Reigning MVP Giannis currently has the best effiency in the NBA, rated at 32.1, while he’s also got a league-high 49 double doubles, making him a multi-faceted player which few can rival.

Harden averages the most points per game in the NBA, with an impressive 34.9.

Speaking on ESPN, Perkins discussed the case for James when he said: “When LeBron James was in the East, the whole thing was ‘Oh, he’s in the East’.

“He lost on four MVPs when he went back to Cleveland. Why? Because he was in the East.

“During that time, those MVPs went to Western Conference players because they were making noise in the West.

“Why are we not keeping the same energy for Giannis?! He’s in the East. The East is weaker. No LeBron James, no Kawhi Leonard.

“Why is the argument not the same? Now here it is. LeBron takes his talent to the Western Conference. His team is number one in the West.”

It’s an interesting debate and it will rage on but it’s worth noting Giannis’ Bucks are 52-9 and are the only team to have clinched a playoffs spot already.

Ben somerford
Sports Pundit staff writer @bensomerford
Australian journalist who specialises on all sports, focusing on football, tennis, basketball and racing, having written for global publications including FourFourTwo, AAP, Inside Futbol and many more....

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