Sheridan’s MVP Rankings: Dec. 11 Edition — Still Limited Love for LBJ

1PAUL GEORGE, G-F, INDIANA: A pedestrian 17 points vs. Heat — but most came during second-half surge. His road trip in review: 27 points at Clippers (W); 43 points at Portland (L); 19 points at Utah (W); 28 at San Antonio (W); 32 at Oklahoma City (L). He will win this award if Indiana stays ahead of Miami throughout the season (unless Granger becomes a ball-hog upon his return), or if Gary Washburn casts all 126 votes.1
2Portland Trail Blazers media day 2013 LaMARCUS ALDRIDGE, F, PORTLAND: Is it too much to say he is dominating the power forward position in the West like no one since Tim Duncan in his heyday? Can you make that strong of a statement after a body of work comprised of 21 games? If you watched him drop 38 on the Thunder, as I did, you become prone to hyperbole. Bottom line is this: He is far and away the best player on what is far and away the NBA’s most surprising success story of the season.2
3KEVIN DURANT, F, OKLAHOMA CITY: Full disclosure: If I was starting a team from scratch, and I had to pick this guy or LeBron James, I would have a very, very hard time making that decision. For now, this guy is undefeated at home, which LeBron can’t say. He has gone for 30 or more points four times already this month, which LeBron cannot say, either. He is grabbing 8.4 rebounds, which LeBron (or Kendrick Perkins) cannot say. So he stays put for this week at No. 3.3
4LeBRON JAMES, F, MIAMI: You ain’t cracking the top 3 when you get cracked three times in your last five games … I don’t care who you are, where you live, where you’re playing next year (Lakers fans, deusional as always, think it’ll be near them) or whether you are shooting 60 percent from the field (and .584 ain’t quite .600). Fairly or unfairly, I will hold his particular fellow to a higher standard while awaiting this season’s 27-game winning streak.4
5TONY PARKER, G, SAN ANTONIO: Rather than focus on Parker’s numbers, which are impressive other than his free throw shooting (.706, down from .835), let’s applaud his leadership in a season when Tim Duncan’s scoring has dropped from 17.8 to 12.9, rebounding has dropped from 9.9 to 7.9, and FG pct has fallen from .502 to .443. Despite those numbers, the Spurs have lost only four games — and Parker in NBA’s only guard with at least 250 FG attempts shooting above 50 percent.5
6IND_Hibbert_RoyROY HIBBERT, C, INDIANA: The big fella gets a big bump because we are showing a little extra love to the Pacers in the wake of their big wins over Miami and at San Antonio. There is a depression in my sofa where I sat watching Pacers games for more time over the past week than I’d care to recall, and I also cannot recall exactly how many times I saw this guy keeps possessions alive with offensive rebounds and disrupt opponents with his shot-blocking and shot-altering. What do coaches always say? “Defense and rebounding wins championships.”9
CHRIS PAUL, G, LA CLIPPERS: He will soon get to share a locker room with Stephen Jackson, and he’ll get an up close look at what it is like to have a teammate whose moral character couldn’t be any more of a polar opposite from that of two of last year’s teammates, Grant Hill and Chauncey Billups. His numbers (league leading 12.0 assists and 4.42 assist-to-turnover ratio) speak for themselves. But I still think his tam is a sweep candidate when the postseason arrives.7
8WarriorsSTEPHEN CURRY, G, GOLDEN STATE: From week to week these rankings can become sort of a “What Have You Done For Me Lately?” measurement, but it all evens out by the end of the season when I fill out my official ballot. This guy hasn’t yet entered the “I would pay to see him play” club (Allen Iverson remains the one and only member), although I did spring for $199 for League Pass, and I always choose these guys when not watching Pacers games. Curry’s 43 in loss to Bobcats nearly matched ‘Melo’s NBA season-high of 45.10
9UTA_Millsap_PaulPAUL MILLSAP, F, HAWKS: Hey, gotta give some love to someone from the Leastern Conference. Last week it was John Wall, who checked in at No. 6 with a bullet. This week, with Wall’s team falling below .500, we throw him out on the street and bring in the Hawks’ x-factor, who was quite the astute pickup by Atlanta general manager Danny Ferry. Only a 25-point, nine-rebound effort in a W over the Clippers has kept him from having five straight double-doubles.
10ELLIS_MONTA-bucksMONTA ELLIS, G, MAVERICKS: How many players can say they defeated the Portland Trail Blazers at the buzzer? This guy is one of them, and the Mavs are looking like a much stronger team than many believed they would be. (More on that in this recent column from the man who wrote the NBA Encyclopedia, Jan Hubbard.) Should he be ranked ahead of Millsap?. Should he be the guy who knocked Wes Matthews and John Wall out of the rankings? Or is keeping Kyrie Irving out? Post your answers in the comments section, please.

DROPPED OUT: John Wall (6), Wes Matthews (8).


Dec. 4 Edition: Paul George Back at No. 1
Nov. 27 Edition: Viva Tony Parker
Nov. 20 Edition: Durant takes over No. 1 spot.
NOV. 13 Edition: Paul George is No. 1.


Chris Sheridan is publisher and editor-in-chief of Follow him on Twitter


  1. B says

    Kevin Love is a better scorer than LA in both volume and efficiency, as well as substantially better rebounder both offensively and defensively, while also getting more assists. So how is it that LA > K Love?


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