Saturday, May 5, 2007

New Dynamics of the MVP Award, Self-Sufficiency, and why Dirk Nowitzki is not an MVP


For the greater part of NBA history, the NBA's season MVP's have generally met these requirements:
1) Arguably the best player in the league
2) The best individual season in the league
3) The most memorable season of the year
4) A self-sufficent player

Sadly however, the NBA, or rather the media has developed a new set of criteria's:

1) "Best player on the best team."
2) Unwritten 50-win requirement
3) More collective team wins = Strong MVP candidate
4) A player that "Makes his teammates better."

Over the last two seasons, this shift in values by the media has become more apparent. The players are receiving an 'individual accolade'' based on 'team success.' While it's true that team success should be of some merit, it should not be the determining factor of the award. Unfortunately, it is.


An MVP must be SELF-SUFFICIENT. They must to be the unquestioned leader of the team and must also be able to fend for themselves, regardless of their teammate's performances.

Dirk Nowitzki is a top 10 player in the NBA without question. However, he is not the most valuable player on his team. That honor would be reserved for Josh Howard who:

a) Is the most significant determining factor in Maverick victories. They were 23-1 when he scored 20+ points.
b) Has given the Mavericks a defensive edge and identity.

Night in and nightout he guards the best swingmen in the league, and he does a pretty good job too. Although he has problems with quick guards (Dwyane Wade, Baron Davis), he is excellent at anticipating the offensive players tendencies in the triple threat position.

Not only is Dirk Nowitzki not their most valuable player, he isn't even their unquestioned leader. There are two types of leadership, vocal leadership and leadership by example. Jason "the Jet" Terry is the vocal leader of the Mavericks, the little general that is an extension of Avery himself on the court. He is not solely the leader due to his ascribed position as the team's point guard, it's just his personality. Some people lead, some people follow.

Not only does Dirk fail to be a vocal leader on the floor, he also fails to lead by example. How can a 90% foul-line shooter consistently miss clutch freethrows and disappear in big games? It is simply inexcusable. Prior to the playoffs, I called the Warriors to win the series in 6 games, and I was even more confident it would finish that way when Goldenstate lost that heartbreaker to Dallas in game 5. Dirk had his first 'typical' MVP-type game, which had been expected of him throughout the series. However, knowing Dirk, I knew he would not show up in back-to-back games.

As I re-iterated earlier Nowitzki is not self-sufficient. How does an MVP candidate go 2-13, for 8 points in an elimination game of the post-season? How come such an elite shooter, who not too long ago won the 3 point contest, lacks the confidence to shoot over players 8 inches shorter than him?

A few days ago on PTI,Wilbon and Kornheiser said they would "recast" their MVP votes for Nowitzki if they could. I'm sure alot of people would. But whats done is done, and Dirk will accepting the award from his living room on Monday.


- Josh Howard, Jason Terry, and Avery Johnson had more to do with Dallas' 67-win regular season than Dirk Nowitzki did.
-Avery Johnson and Josh Howard are responsible for Dallas' defensive improvements. Johnson does not reward players with PT unless they play defense, and Howard has the physical tools to harass premier swingmen in the league.
-Dirk is not self-sufficient. He lacks the ability and the confidence to take over a game by himself. His success is dependant on others. Thus they are rewarding an individual for primarily a team effort. This reflects the media's new values in the NBA.
-Dirk also falls short on leadership prerequisites required of an MVP candidate. He is not a vocal leader (Terry) nor does he lead by example.

Will Dirk win the award? Yes. But for the second consecutive year now, the MVP award will be given out to an undeserving candidate.


GAWD said...

Kobe didn't deserve it either, Lebron James Deserves the 2007 league MVP.

Anonymous said...

You are a dumbass, who masterbates to Kobe everynight...

Anonymous said...

You have no freicking clue. J-Ho is one of the worst players i have ever seen he never passes the ball in the first place HE also shoots around 30% this year...good for him. How did dirk have nothing to do with the 67 game season? he averaged 24.6 points and around 10 rebounds. If you look at NBA. com, it shows his affection, or how he helps the team. Its around plus 24. That is not opinionated, it is a fact. I agree with the fact that the JET was the vocal leader, but the MVP does not usually require to be the vocal leader. He leads by example in many was. Although im not in collage or NBA, he taught me how to play basketball.