Early Season NBA MVP Conversation
It should come as no surprise that the three player who finished in the top three in voting last season are in the thick of the conversation once again, however, there is some new blood arriving - one who has never been part of the conversation before.
We'll begin with Carmelo Anthony; the man who has led his revamped Knicks roster to one of the top records in the Eastern Conference. Melo has long been considered one of the more selfish, ball-stopping players in the league, however, it is his consistency that has the Knicks playing at such a high level. Even as Amare Stoudemire has yet to play in a game, Melo has been able to make s name for himself in the Garden this season, averaging 28.5 points and 6 rebounds per game while shooting a blistering 43% from behind the arc. At 21-9, the Knicks are primed for a deeper playoff run this year, and it starts and ends with Carmelo Anthony.
A logical choice, however, would be Chris Paul. He has been the vocal and on-floor court leader that the much maligned Los Angeles Clippers have needed to harness all their young talent. Blake Griffin has the top point guard in the league tossing him alley-oops on the fast-break and their chemistry is noticeably better after spending last season with each other. Paul leads the league in steals again (and the Clipper are tops in the league) and while his averages are down, his impact is far greater. Currently riding a 17-game win streak, Paul has pushed the Clippers to become the top team in the NBA with an emphasis on the defensive end of the floor. CP3 is the top choice at this point, propelling the New Kids on the Block to a 25-6 record through December.
LeBron James and Kevin Durant currently lead their respective teams after facing each other in the NBA Finals a year ago. Both the Heat and Thunder have impressive records, however, they are not playing up to their defensive standards. LeBron has scored 20+ points in every game of the season. Durant has led multiple Thunder comebacks, but with Paul and Anthony giving their respective teams the effort we see on a nightly basis, James and Durant cannot be valued the same at this juncture.