NBA MVP Race: Why James Harden is The MVP
As the wild action continues after the All-Star break, teams are looking to give out their all to gain a Playoff spot. We've seen teams change, players come and go, and a lot of injuries. But there's one thing that remains constant, and that is James Harden's explicable performance this season.
You get to hear that name every night the Houston Rockets are playing. From being the scoring leader to dropping a 60-point triple double. He's everywhere!
It feels great to witness these huge performances every night. Since the 2015 season, this guy has been the closest to being the MVP every single time. Whether it was Stephen Curry's first MVP season or Russell Westbrook's historic triple-double campaign season, Harden was the next big thing in the league.
Also read: Ranking the 10 Greatest MVP seasons EVER
This season nobody has been more consistent than Harden in the league. With the current MVP Westbrook already out of the race, it's obvious that he's going to take the prize. You cannot sleep on the Rockets anymore. With Chris Paul on the roster, they have proved to be the team that could even beat the Golden State Warriors.
Paul's addition to their line-up has not even affected Harden's performance a bit. That's the most stunning fact of the season. LeBron James, Giannis Antetokounmpo, and Anthony Davis have made their mark in the league this season but nobody has done it all the time like Harden is doing.
Harden has indeed shut down all the competition beating the top teams in the league accompanied by huge performances in crunch time. Since the start of the season, we have seen players appear and disappear on the Top 5 MVP Candidates list. First, it was Giannis, then Kyrie Irving, LeBron, Curry and DeMar DeRozan. But Harden overshadowed them all every single time. We might have seen poor performances from these superstars at some point during the season, but Harden has never let Rockets fans down.
The debate might soon shift to whether or not Harden is the unanimous MVP?
Unless LeBron does something magical with the new look Cavs, or Davis keeps dropping 40 every night, there's nobody even close to him in the MVP race.
Rockets Winning Record
Winning does matter. There is no MVP in NBA history whose team didn't make the Playoffs that season except one. It's Kareem Abdul-Jabbar! We know the current scenario is pretty different. If you win more often, you're favored over the competition.
The Rockets are currently outplaying the Warriors and have shocked the world with their amazing style of play. Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni is having his best season so far as a Coach. Rockets keep producing more and more out of their offense. There has been a great support for Harden both on offense and defense. Excellent reads on pick-and-rolls, better transition defense, and great chemistry has been the recipe for their success. It's obvious there's a lot more to come from them until the Playoffs.
They have made the perfect use of Paul's game without limiting what Harden puts on the board for them. Currently leading the NBA, who knows if Rockets would take the #1 seed in the Playoffs. Such facts push the conversation towards Harden's side every single time.
In this unpredictable season of the NBA, only one thing is for sure right now and that is Harden winning the prestigious MVP award, finally for the first time in his long career.
The time has finally come for the bearded one.