Sheridan Hoops MVP Rankings After Week Five

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1TIM DUNCAN, F-C, SAN ANTONIO: We told you about his math teacher in St. Croix in last week’s rankings. This week, we’ll ask a math question: What is 62 divided by 80? The answer is 77.5, which is Duncan’s FT percentage. He also is averaging 18.9 points and 10.1 rebounds while shooting nearly 54 percent, and Memphis had no answer for him as he put up 27 and 15 in Saturday night’s OT thriller. He and Tony Parker are carrying the team while Manu Ginobili struggles through what has looked like his worst NBA season ever.4
2LeBRON JAMES, F, MIAMI: Good thing Ray Allen was open when LBJ dribbled into the middle of four collapsing defenders Thursday night, lost control of the ball and then watched Allen bail him out. Not only did that play give him an assist, it earned another old man a spot in this Top 10 list (see below). Poor fella has to get on a plane this week (to Washington) for the only time over a 30-day stretch. Yes, the schedule-maker (Matt Winick of the NBA league office) was quite kind to the Heat in December — even if they’ve struggled more than expected in home games against the Cavs, Bucks, quasi-Spurs and Nets (when D-Wade finally broke out). ‘Bron has scored at least 20 in every game this season.1
3KEVIN DURANT, F, OKLAHOMA CITY: Steadily moving northward as these rankings move from week to week, and it sure looks as though he and Kobe Bryant are on their way to another 1-2 finish in the scoring race (especially with Carmelo Anthony fading after his red-hot start to the season). Durant has been more efficient than Bryant and is ahead of him in all other important categories except assists. But Kobe has better big men to throw the ball to. Also, Durant does not play for a .500 team.5
4CARMELO ANTHONY, F, NEW YORK: Assuming they defeat the Suns today in yet another noon start at MSG (WTF?), their winning percentage since Mike Woodson took over is .750. No team is better equipped personnel-wise to challenge the Heat in a playoff series. And no, I do not expect Woody to rest his starters for their showdown in Miami on Thursday night that’ll help show whether opening night in Manhattan (Knicks defeated Miami by 20) was an aberration or not. Hoping that Jason Kidd is ready to return by then; he has been as important to their success as anyone.2
5ZACH RANDOLPH, F, MEMPHIS: Le’s face it, even if the Grizzlies finish with the No. 1 record in the entire NBA, there is a zero percent chance this guy is going to get the MVP award. The guy who will get recognized will be Lionel Hollins, and deservedly so. But we still must give props to Z-Bo for being the rock on this team — although Rudy Gay is starting to rock it pretty consistently, too. Z-Bo had 17 and 15 in loss at San Antonio, but was a minus-16 during his 39 minutes. Hence the drop to his lowest spot of the season in these rankings.3
6KOBE BRYANT, G, L.A. LAKERS: He leads the NBA in scoring, his team is turning things around, but there are some negatives that should be pointed out. He is turning the ball over 4.1 times per game. When he scores 40 points, the Lakers are 0-2. When he scores 30-plus points, the Lakers are 1-5. With anyone else, numbers like those would relegate you to a 9 or 10 spot. But he is the Mamba, and he has a way of turning things around and inspiring his teammates. Maybe his public tantrum at practice Friday will do the trick this time.6
776ers SixersJRUE HOLIDAY, G, PHILADELPHIA 76ers: Welcome to the MVP rankings, young man. Betcha never thought you’d be valued ahead of another former UCLA guard, Russell Westbrook. But that is indeed the case here, because Russ has Kevin Durant playing with him, and you do not have Andrew Bynum playing with you. If the refs had given you the continuation call you deserved Saturday night late against Chicago, y’all might be 11-6. So stay patient, Jrue. Sixers fans will come around eventually, and the first word out of their mouths if this keeps up will not be “Andrew” for much longer.-
8DAVID LEE, F, GOLDEN STATE WARRIORS: Went for 31 on 13-for-15 shooting in crazy late Thursday night win vs. Nuggets when all anyone wanted to talk about was Popovich v. Stern. But it did not go unnoticed here — nor has the Dubs’ 10-5 record that has them in 4th place in the Western Conference as the new week begins. Probably the most underappreciated player in the NBA over the course of his career, which includes 514 regular-season games and zero playoff games. Steph Curry has been no slouch, but D.Lee is a rock who can be counted on without having to hold one’s breath awaiting the next ankle sprain.-
9RAY ALLEN, G, MIAMI HEAT Let’s face it, the guy has hit more big shots for Miami this season than D-Wade or Chris Both — both of whom arguably belong in this top 10 list. But his 3-pointer against the quasi-Spurs saved both the Heat and the commish from a national embarrassment of epic proportions, and this piece needs some pro-Stern balance given the intro. Replaces O.J. Mayo in the 9-spot despite trailing Mayo in 3-point percentage by one-one thousandth of a point for 2nd in NBA behind leader Matt Bonner.-
10ANDERSON VAREJAO, C, CLEVELAND CAVALIERS: Rarely will we give props to players from teams who are bottom-feeders. But in this case, we’re givin’ ‘em to Andy because he remains the one reason why this is still a strangely compelling team to watch despite the absence of Kyrie Irving. And no, we are not counting Team Comic Sans out of the playoff race this early in the season. There is always one team that comes back from the dead, and the Cavs are our choice to be that team this year. No player has averaged this many rebounds (15.3) since Ben Wallace a decade ago.-

DROPPED OUT: Chris Bosh (7),Jamal Crawford (8), O.J. Mayo (9), James Harden (10).

TEAMS CONSPICUOUSLY UNREPRESENTED: Atlanta Hawks, Brooklyn Nets, Charlotte Bobcats, Boston Celtics, L.A. Clippers.

OTHER RANKINGS: Most Improved | Rookie | Heisler’s Power Rankings

(MVP RANKINGS FROM AFTER WEEK FOUR)
(MVP RANKINGS FROM AFTER WEEK THREE)
(MVP RANKINGS FROM AFTER WEEK TWO)
(MVP RANKINGS FROM AFTER WEEK ONE)

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  1. Chris says

    I’m sorry, but these are horrible. You have a guy who is averaging 13.3 PPG, 2.1 APG, 3.0 RPG in your top ten MVP. How do you publish that? Your a nationally known writer and you put this out here, its laughable.

    No Rondo, Westbrook, or even players like Bosh? Come on this is just bad!

  2. A.J. says

    Not to get too nitpicky, but that comment about Varejao’s rebounding is wrong. Are memories really that short? Kevin Love averaged 15.2 rebounds a game less than two years ago. Or is 15.3 exponentially more than 15.2.

  3. SomeGuy32 says

    Knicks started at noon because there was supposed to be NHL at 7pm at MSG. Also the Warriors are tied for 4th with LAC, behind Memphis, SA, and OKC

  4. Commenter says

    I agree on the bad call, but there were a few bad calls that decided that outcome. No calls on the Spurs but ticky tack calls on the Grizz. I’ll just write it off as home team calls, it happens, all you can do is move to the next one

    • Jordan Campsey says

      If you watched the game Spurs did get the call he mentions as well as the opening tip that went off Ginobili’s knee. But a huge play earlier was a 3 point play for the Grizz when Bonner was shoved in the back by Randolph into the Conley resulting in a 3 point play that should have been an offensive foul on Randolph. To publicly nit pick a call as much as Sheridan has done on twitter and multiple articles already is pretty crazy. There are missed calls all the time. If the shotclock call was made they are down 2 inbounding the ball with 16 seconds left versus a defense they had only scored 22 combined pts in the previous 17 mins (4th + OT). Did the call cost them the game? No. Cost them a chance at tying it, yes… kind of, didn’t they still get the ball after the no call… Yes they did and then threw it deep and out of bounds.

  5. Jordan Campsey says

    Chris. You are reaching quite hard on the whole Memphis blown call deal. Was it a shot clock violation? Yes. But Memphis still retained the ball. Bayless got the ball and heaved an ill advised pass up the court. If he calls timeout there you don’t say a word. If they complete the pass and Gay scores do you complain the Spurs were screwed on lack of the call when they should have stopped play, which would have given the Spurs a chance to set up their half court defense? Reaching pretty hard here Chris. That non call didn’t cost them the game, the lack of compusure from Bayless did. It’d be different if the ball hit the rim and Spurs got the rebound. Come on Chris!

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