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The 7 N.B.A. All-Stars Who Would Be King (or Just M.V.P.)

  • February 27, 2021

The Case For:

Curry has played every game this season except one and has kept the Warriors afloat, despite Klay Thompson’s missing the whole season, and Draymond Green’s missing time because of injuries. From a statistical perspective, Curry is putting up nearly identical numbers to his 2015-16 M.V.P. season, which is considered one of the most dominant in N.B.A. history. This run might be even more impressive, given the lack of consistent playmakers around him. Curry is second in the league in scoring.

The Case Against:

As with Jokic, the team success isn’t there. The Warriors are 18-15 and are closer to missing the playoffs than to getting home-court advantage.

29.6 points/4.4 rebounds/8 assists per game; 44.7 percent field goal percentage

The Case For:

Lillard’s numbers are consistently exceptional from year to year. This season, however, he’s doing this without the second- and third-best players on his team, CJ McCollum and Jusuf Nurkic, who have been sidelined with injuries. Despite not having another elite playmaker next to him, Lillard has carried Portland to 18-13 and fifth place in the Western Conference. From a “doing the most with the least” perspective, combined with elite statistics, Lillard and Curry have the best cases.

The Case Against:

There’s no obvious hole in Lillard’s M.V.P. case other than simple competition. It’s a deep field, and Lillard’s numbers are on par with those of multiple candidates, including Curry and Luka Doncic.

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