At the end of the regular season the NBA hands out awards for everything: best coach, best player, best hair cut, etc. Yet, the playoffs has only one individual award and that is for the top scorer on the winning team best player of the NBA Finals. As many players don’t get the chance to play in the finals, I figured I’d break down the top players so far.
Alright, so I limited this to players that had played at least 24 minutes a game and at least four games in the series. In short, to be MVP calibur you had to have put in the time to impact the series. After that, I went by Points over Par (PoP) per game. This is how many points a game the player gained for their team as an edge. For example, +5.0 means the player gives the team a 5 point edge against an average opponent. Sound good? Let’s take a look
Round 1 Studs
|James Harden||Oklahoma City Thunder||Dallas Mavericks||2.6||4||32.3||+6.0|
|Rajon Rondo||Boston Celtics||Atlanta Hawks||1.0||5||29.2||+4.6|
|Roy Hibbert||Indiana Pacers||Orlando Magic||5.0||5||29.2||+4.6|
|Andrew Bynum||L.A. Lakers||Denver Nuggets||5.0||7||37.4||+4.5|
|Chris Paul||L.A. Clippers||Memphis Grizzlies||1.0||7||38.8||+3.6|
At the top of our list are three young players that quickly dispatched their opponents in the first round. Harden and Rondo are underrated by many, so I’m glad to see them perform so well. Hibbert has been a surprise this season and kept his great play for one round (against a team without Dwight Howard). At the bottom of the list are the players that are arguably the future in Los Angeles. No one will doubt Chris Paul’s genius. It’s questionable in L.A. fans realize how lucky they were to have Bynum. If a second round loss is enough to freak out, imagine what a first round loss would have done?
Round 2 studs
|LeBron James||Miami Heat||Indiana Pacers||3.8||6||42.2||+7.5|
|Kawhi Leonard||San Antonio Spurs||L.A. Clippers||2.5||4||28.7||+5.9|
|Rajon Rondo||Boston Celtics||Philadelphia 76ers||1.0||7||40.1||+5.3|
|Kevin Durant||Oklahoma City Thunder||L.A. Lakers||3.2||5||40.1||+5.1|
|Tim Duncan||San Antonio Spurs||L.A. Clippers||4.5||4||33.9||+4.4|
King James doesn’t show up in the playoffs? King James can’t play big? None of that is true. Thus far LeBron has put up the series of any player so far these playoffs. Rondo makes another appearance and Kevin Durant proves once again he’s much better than Kobe. That brings us to the Spurs. They had not one but two of the top performers in the second round! Crazier still is that both Leonard and Duncan took a nap the first game against the Thunder and the Spurs STILL WON! The Spurs are scary, that’s for sure.
Hope you enjoyed this and we’ll see if any of the names above are back at the end of this round.