Lebron for MVP
by Henry Liao for philippinebasketball.ph (04/27/2010)
Itâ€™s a certainty that the Cleveland Cavaliers star will romp away with the Maurice Podoloff trophy as the NBA MVP for a second consecutive year in the official balloting by a media panel.
James probably will get all the first-place MVP votes from the 123 sportswriters and broadcasters in the U.S. and Canada who regularly cover the American professional league.
The media members actually had completed their selections as early as April 15 (the final day of the regular season) but the results wonâ€™t be announced officially by the league until mid-May.
They were asked to choose the leagueâ€™s five best players in order of preference with points being awarded on a 10-7-5-3-1 basis.
For the first time ever, the fans also will be involved in the MVP balloting through the Internet. The fansâ€™ top choice will secure one extra first-place MVP vote or the equivalent of 10 points.
The most recent time that there was a near unanimous MVP balloting came in the 1999-2000 season when Shaquille Oâ€™Neal, then with the championship-bound Los Angeles Lakers, came up just one first-place vote short of perfection (120 out of 121).
Oâ€™Neal landed second in one voterâ€™s MVP list.
James is expected to be the 10th player in NBA history to win the MVP honor in back-to-back seasons. This also will mark the 11th time that such a feat will be accomplished.
It must be noted that the MVP balloting began only in 1955-56 and the winner was selected by a vote of NBA players until 1979-80. Sportswriters and broadcasters have been voting for the MVP award since 1980-81.
A high-flying 6-8 forward who has spent his entire seven-year career with the Cavaliers, James powered the Cavaliers to the best regular-season record in the NBA for the second straight year at 61-21.
The 25-year-old Ohio native ranked second in the NBA in scoring this season with a 29.7-point average in 76 games. He also placed sixth in assists with a career-high 8.6 apg and ninth in steals at 1.64 spg while grabbing 7.3 rebounds an outing.
James is only the third player in NBA history to average at least 29 points, seven rebounds and eight assists in a single season.
â€śThe Big O,â€ť Oscar Robertson, turned in the trick in his first six pro seasons with the Cincinnati Royals (the predecessors of the Sacramento Kings). â€śHis Airness,â€ť Michael Jordan, did it once in 1988-89 when he registered averages of 32.5 points, 8.0 rebounds and 8.0 assists with the Chicago Bulls.
Other players whom I expect to be ranked among the top five in this yearâ€™s MVP poll are Orlandoâ€™s Dwight Howard, Oklahoma Cityâ€™s Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant of the reigning NBA champion LA Lakers and Dallasâ€™ Dirk Nowitzki.