Welcome to Round Five of the Blogger MVP/ROY rankings! We are pleased as an ice cube in root beer to be hosting this prestigious event as a recent survey shows that only .0022% of all NBA fans who regularly surf the internet for information of any kind relating to the NBA realize that this blog exists. (In other words, no one else volunteered this round.)
The rankings are comprised of votes by a highly esteemed panel of bloggers and myself who somehow managed to pull themselves away from whatever they were wasting their time doing to submit their lists. Points are granted for each vote in a descending scale thus a first place vote in the MVP rankings counted for ten points, second place was good for nine points, third place counted for eight and so on. In the ROY rankings a first place vote counted for five points as only five rookies are ranked.
The bloggers who took part in round five are (clearly in no particular order):
College Wolf from TWolves Blog
Ben from Third Quarter Collapse
David from 20 Second Time Out
Brett from Queen City Hoops
Matt/Corndogg from Hardwood Paroxysm
The scholars from We Rite Goode
Clipper Steve from Clips Nation
Ricky from Sixers 4 Guidos
Spartacus from 3 Shades of Blue
Jim from Green Bandwagon
Our friends from Nets Daily
Tom from Celtcs Blog
Ryan from Hornets 24/7
The man who established this amazing tradition, Alex from Brew Hoop
And of course your humble host.
One note before we start, as I am hosting this round I decided my votes would count for three times those of everyone else and I authorized myself to manipulate the rankings in order to reveal my true genius to the world.
(Of course, when it came down to it I chickened out and ended up not doing either of those things.)
You may not have noticed because of the Hollywood writers’ strike, but it is movie awards season. In honor of that annual procession of hot air we count down the rankings starting with the least to the greatest. After each player is announced we will start out with the finest comments from the panel and then I will provide my thoughts should I be able to come up with any.
Click on Permalink to get to the rankings.
Rookie of the Year
5. Juan Carlos Navarro (16 Points, First Place Votes – 0, Last Round – NR)
When he gets playing time, he plays well averaging 18.9 ppg in the last 7 games he has gotten 25 plus mpg. Note to Memphis coaches: get him some more playing time. – Spartacus from 3 Shades of Blue
He’s exploded for 26, 21, and 21 points since the last edition of the Rankings. He’s leading all rookies in three point percentage and is second to Durant in points per game. – College Wolf from TWolves Blog
Again, Grizzlies=Getting Better. Navarro has been dynamite off the bench, and is plugging in double digits already. We like where he's headed, even if he does lose his snuggle-bear, Pau Gasol. – Matt/Corndogg from Hardwood Paroxysm
If you like stats, Navarro does not have a great PER, but he is second among rookies in true shooting percentage ahead of a bunch of players who do not hang out 25 feet from the basket.
4. Luis Scola (17 Points, First Place Votes – 0, Last Round – 5)
The numbers aren't good enough to put him any higher, but Scola is on here because we have yet to see a player this season outside of Dwayne Wade try harder for every loose ball. Scola comes in and instantly invigorates the club. We expect him to be starting come playoffs. IF the Rockets make the playoffs. – Matt/Corndogg from Hardwood Paroxysm
Was there a run on 27-year old rookies this year or what? - Spartacus from 3 Shades of Blue
Good all around player - needs Adelman to figure out he's better than Chuck Hayes. - Ryan Hornets 24/7
Scola is a very skilled player who plays hard. He is battle a battle tested vet of the intense Euroleague playoffs and the Spanish ACB League playoffs and should help the Rockets in the playoffs (yes Corndogg, if they make the playoffs).
3. Yi Jianlian (19 Points, First Place Votes – 0, Last Round – 3)
In single digits 8 of his last 12 games, Yi has hit the Rookie Great Wall (I stole that form someone, but I don't remember who). But someone has to be the third best rookie. – Clipper Steve from Clips Nation
Well, Yi did end up third overall, but as Clipper Steve pointed out Yi is not setting the world on fire. He does continue to show his amazing potential almost every game he plays though.
2. Al Horford (61 Points, First Place Votes – 5, Last Round – 2)
Call me crazy, but I think his consistent 8-and-10 production can balloon to 12-and-15 as he career progresses; in other words, he'll have actual value in this league. Meanwhile, Kevin Durant has given no indication that he'll ever be more than a high-scoring, poor-shooting, one-dimensional player. – Ben from Third Quarter Collapse
A silent worker that will have a great career, despite not being flashy... or maybe just because of that – Ricky from Sixers 4 Guidos
Horford has really started to siphon off some of the support for the position of top rookie. A big reason for that is without him the Hawks are nowhere near the seventh seed. Horford better get a security detail before a deranged Suns fan who was counting on the Hawks pick being in the top three next year does something stupid.
1. Kevin Durant (65 Points, First Place Votes – 10, Last Round – 1)
The Pro Durant Crowd:
Rudy Gay shot 42.2 % last year. Chris Paul shot 43.0 % two years ago. Deron Williams shot 42.1 % two years ago. Luol Deng shot 43.4 % three years ago. Devin Harris shot 42.9 % three years ago. LeBron James shot 41.7 % four years ago. Carmelo Anthony shot 42.6 % four years ago. T.J. Ford shot 38.4 % four years ago. They were all rookies, and none of them have shot so poorly since. This doesn't give Durant a pass for chucking, but there is a precedent of very good players struggling from the field in year one. – Alex from Brew Hoop
Despite the fact that he puts up almost twice as many shots as any other rookie, does anyone else deserve to be in this spot? – College Wolf from TWolves Blog
I don't care if his percentages are so low, try to play with Watson, Petro, etc. – Ricky from Sixers 4 Guidos
The Overly Disappointed in Durant Crowd:
Seattle is 0 for January so far and Durant's game has remained the same: he alternates 4-13 shooting nights with 12-23 shooting nights and it all averages out to a field goal percentage that hovers consistently around .400. He provides minimal contributions in the other statistical categories. – David from 20 Second Timeout
If he can score more effectively, I'll reward him with my vote. Until then, no dice. – Ben from Third Quarter Collapse who was one of only two bloggers to rank Durant lower than second
His numbers aren't a lot better than Adam Morrison's rookie season. How many votes did he get for ROY? – Clipper Steve from Clips Nation
Shouldn't voting for KD be more fun? – We Rite Goode
I could not agree more with the talents at We Rite Goode. We were supposed to marvel at Durant’s rookie season. Watching him play chuck up bad shot after bad shot is painful let alone fun.
Other nominees included Jamario Moon (15 Points, Last Round – NR), Sean Williams (12 Points, Last Round – 4), Mike Conley, Jr. (10 Points), Joakim Noah (6 Points) and Al Thornton (2 Points)
Most Valuable Player
10. Chauncey Billups (22 Points, First Place Votes – 0, Last Round – 7)
Everyone does realize this guy is the Tom Petty of the NBA, right? Sold out concerts, top selling singles and albums, consistent playmaker. Never, ever going to get the credit he deserves. – Matt/Corndogg from Hardwood Paroxysm
Mr. Big Shot has led the Pistons to 31 wins, and yet they somehow still seem a bit under the radar. It's a balanced attack and a veteran team, but Billups is just as important to the Pistons as Nash is to the Suns or Paul is to the Hornets. – Clipper Steve from Clips Nation
Having one of his best seasons and willing the Pistons to victory despite Tayshaun Prince's struggles. – Ben from Third Quarter Collapse
What else can I say? I love Tom Petty.
9. Dirk Nowitzki (23 Points, First Place Votes – 0, Last Round – 9 tie)
I could swear he's happy that almost nobody is bringing up his name for MVP this year, or Dallas as possible winner...maybe that's why he/they will have the last laugh ! – Ricky from Sixers 4 Guidos
Unlike last year, Dirk and the Mavericks are happily flying under the radar this regular season. Perhaps this is a better recipe. – Alex from Brew Hoop
Dirk Diggler has scored 20+ in 12 straight games. He has also cut back on his outside shooting, taking an average of only 2 3PT attempts during that span as he focuses on scoring in the low post. – Spartacus from 3 Shades of Blue
He’d be higher if I were entirely sure Josh Howard was not capable of passing him as the man in Dallas. – Jim from Green Bandwagon
Dirk was the only player who made the top ten with no one putting him in their top five. It is difficult to take Dallas seriously, but it is equally difficult to ignore them
8. Brandon Roy (27 Points, First Place Votes – 0, Last Round – 8)
We can already start to see the steam start to escape from the edges of the upstart Blazers, but that shouldn't detract from the magnificent job this kid has done. – Matt/Corndogg from Hardwood Paroxysm
The Blazers are good?!?! How did that happen? Oh yeah, that's right -- because Roy is friggin' unbelievable, averaging 21.9 ppg, 5.3 apg, 3.8 rpg, 1.3 spg on .493 FG% in his last 8 games. – Spartacus from 3 Shades of Blue
The Trailblazers put everything on this kid’s shoulders down the stretch in close games and he is delivering. Even as a Nugget fan, it is difficult to cheer against these guys.
7. Tim Duncan (36 Points, First Place Votes – 0, Last Round – 9 tie)
Is my list a sham for having Duncan 5th even though I would take him over any other player in the league if I had to? – Jim from Green Bandwagon
Somehow, in recent years he is not mentioned much in MVP talk. The main reason his regular season numbers are not as gaudy as they used to be is that his minutes are down a bit. – David from 20 Second Timeout
The Spurs are oddly vulnerable, as evidenced by their home blowout loss to the Hornets on Saturday. Still, few players bring more on both ends of the court than Timmy. – Alex from Brew Hoop
Never appreciated enough. – Nets Daily
What else is there to add?
6. Steve Nash (72 Points, First Place Votes – 0, Last Round – 6)
Career highs in three point percentage and assists for a two-time MVP is pretty impressive. – Alex from Brew Hoop
Teams are still trying that "make Nash the scorer" thing. He's still leading in assists, pulling in more than last year, and he's averaging 20.2 ppg in the last 5. He's also leading a team that's (at the time of this writing) tied for 1st place in the West, and that's with missing their starting small forward, Grant Hill. We iz afearz of Steviez Nashnezz. – Matt/Corndogg from Hardwood Paroxysm
You know that this guy is turning 34 in few days, right? – Ricky from Sixers 4 Guidos
It is amazing that Nash has been able to stay on the court after having such a difficult staying out of the trainer’s room in Dallas. Either he has upped his pain tolerance, because we know he is banged up, playing soccer in the summer is a cure for old age or he has just been lucky. I think he was pretty tough when he played for Dallas and you have to be in shape to play soccer, but Suns fans better hope that if it is a matter of luck that luck does not run out.
5. Kobe Bryant (90 points, First Place Votes – 1, Last Round – 5)
With Bynum out, Kobe has shown that he will do whatever it takes to keep the Lakers afloat--scoring 48 points against Seattle and passing for 11 dimes against Denver. The Lakers have a killer road schedule coming up but if Kobe can help them go 5-4 or 4-5 during that stretch then they will not lose too much ground in the standings before Bynum returns. – David from 20 Second Timeout
Only 4 losses (Boston, Phoenix, San Antonio, and Dallas) in their last 16 games! Andrew Bynum went down and the team didn’t miss a beat, largely thanks to Kobe and his all-around excellence. [Editor’s note: get ready for the zinger of the day.] Kobe had two straight games of 10 plus rebounds, mostly because Kwame Brown couldn’t get seven boards in a lumberyard. – College Wolf from TWolves Blog
Will we look back at the career of Kobe Bryant and wonder how on earth he never won an MVP award?
4. Dwight Howard (95 Points, First Place Votes – 0, Last Round – 3)
His stats have declined each month, as has the Magic's performance. It's going to take one heckuva second half from him for Orlando to have any shot at making a deep playoff run. Of course, Rashard Lewis showing up would certainly help things. – Ben from Third Quarter Collapse
Has had only one 20 point 20 rebound game since the last edition of the Rankings. You know someone is good when people wonder why he only has one 20-20 game every two weeks. – College Wolf from TWolves Blog
Funny how he's 59.6% FG and 59.8% from the line, forgivable if you bring also 15 rebounds per game to the table – Ricky from Sixers 4 Guidos
The most dominant force in the league, he's a man among 7 foot boys around the rim. He may never really develop an offensive repertoire beyond catching lob passes and dunking them, but then again, he may not have to. – Clipper Steve from Clips Nation
I wonder is watching Dwight Howard like watching Wilt Chamberlain in his prime?
I think Dwight’s MVP campaign is slowly losing steam. He is still the most dominant big man in the game, but lags behind our top three MVP candidates in skill.
3. Kevin Garnett (112 Points, First Place Votes – 3, Last Round – 2)
It is fairly common for star players to win games with buzzer beating shots. It is a lot less common for star players to win games by poking the ball away from the opposing team’s point guard and then hitting the deck to grab the ball and the victory (see 41 second mark). – Jim from Green Bandwagon
Hello Mr. Garnett, meet Mr. MVP Trophy. – College Wolf from TWolves Blog
His individual stats are down but the numbers that best reflect his impact are the won-loss records of the team he left and the team he joined. – David from 20 Second Timeout
The Big Ticket has accomplished a lot this year, but there are a couple things he hasn't done: scored 30 points in a game or lost a game against any team from his old conference. The first point makes you ask how he can be an MVP contender and the second point answers that question. – Alex from Brew Hoop
By the way, in case you haven't noticed, he plays for the Celtics. I don't know if you caught that, with him popping the jersey after that DOMINATING win over the vaunted last-place Wolves. El Tigre loses points for douchebaginess. – Matt/Corndogg from Hardwood Paroxysm
We had to worry about KG’s intensity burning too hot in Minnesota complete with constant jokes about him going on a shooting rampage through the aptly named Target Center. With the way the Celtics attacked the regular season only to slow down quite a bit from their opening pace maybe we need to worry about the same thing in Boston.
2. Guillermo Diaz (129 Points, First Place Votes – 3, Last Round – NR)
Sorry, I could not resist...
2. Chris Paul (126 Points, First Place Votes – 5, Last Round – 4)
The starters play 30 minutes or less for 4 games in a row, and he still averages a double double. Probably why they only play 30 minutes or less. - Ryan from Hornets 24/7
31-12, number 1 in the West, your starting team mate in the back court is freaking Mo Peterson and your bench is nearly D-League material? There must be something under all that...or someone. – Ricky from Sixers 4 Guidos
The Hornets have no reason to be as good as they are. Paul is, without question, the best point guard in the game today. – Ben From Third Quarter Collapse
I really like David West and Tyson Chandler and to a lesser extent Peja Stojakovic. I just don’t like them enough to imagine a scenario where the Hornets have the best record in the West...until you throw Chris Paul into the mix. – Jim from Green Bandwagon
Far and away the best player on the best team in the best conference, it's hard to ignore Chris Paul. And yet apparently it's not, since the Hornets have the league's worst attendance, are NEVER on National TV, and Paul barely got noticed in the all star voting. – Clipper Steve from Clips Nation
How did we get here? I have written before that it is getting comical to see the Spurs, Suns and Mavs all fall over each other trying to show who cares less about the regular season this year, but still for the Hornets to be on top of this conference at the halfway point of the season is nothing short of stunning. Chris Paul is simply amazing.
1. LeBron James (135 Points, First Place Votes – 6, Last Round – 1)
There is absolutely no one more terrifying if you're a fan of the other team in a close game inside the last five minutes. Nobody. Not Garnett. Not Billups. Not Kobe. Nobody. Yeah, we said it. You gonna tell the King we're wrong? Didn't think so. – Matt/Corndogg from Hardwood Paroxysm
Has the numbers of three men put together...which means the Cavs are still playing two guys down. – We Rite Goode
The Cavs are 9-2 in January, as LBJ has put up staggering numbers of 36.1 ppg, 8.7 rpg, 6.8 apg, 2.5 spg on .496 FG%. He is obviously the MVP of his team, as they are barely considered competitive without him and with numbers like that, he is the MVP of the entire league. – Spartacus from 3 Shades of Blue
He's like a tropical island - Mostly coast, but terrible when hot. - Ryan from Hornets 24/7
Now that the Cavs are playing well again, we can get back to appreciating how much of the load he carries. – Nets Daily
I would add something, but I am sure by now even is just wishing this post would end. If this were an awards show, you would not be able to hear me talking over the blaring bumper music.
Anyway, here are the other players nominated for MVP: Caron Butler (15 Points), Baron Davis (11 Points), Yao Ming (11 Points), Allen Iverson (10 Points), Manu Ginobili (10 Points), Amare Stoudemire (8 Points), Carlos Boozer (5 Points), Chris Kaman (4 Points), Chris Bosh (4 Points), Stephen Jackson (3 Points), Paul Pierce (3 Points), Al Jefferson (2 Points) and Marcus Camby (1 Point).
Thanks to all the bloggers who participated in Round 5 of the Blogger MVP/ROY Rankings, but most of all, thanks to the handful of you who made it to the end of this ridiculously long post.