Kawhi Leonard has been one of the best all-around players in the league this season and if it wasn’t for a certain Baby-faced Assassin in Golden State, he might have been the favorite to win the MVP award.
After another home victory against the Miami Heat on Wednesday, the San Antonio Spurs are 60-11 on the season and a league best 36-0 at home. Leonard starred in the game with 32 points, eight rebounds, a steal and a block before leaving in the third quarter due to a bruised quad. On the season, the likely Defensive Player of the Year is averaging 20.8 points on 50.8 percent shooting from the field, 1.8 3-pointers on 46.3 percent shooting, 6.8 rebounds, 2.5 assists, 1.8 steals, 0.9 blocks, 1.5 turnovers. Those aren’t eye-popping numbers (although it’s about as clean as a stat sheet can look), but his abilities on the floor can’t be quantified by numbers, particularly on the defensive end.
Leonard will receive plenty of points in the race for MVP, but it will be an absolute shocker if Stephen Curry doesn’t unanimously get all the first-place votes this year. Curry has broken all kinds of 3-point records, leads the league in scoring, has had one of the most prolific statistical seasons of all-time, his team is the best in the league and looking to break the record for most wins in a single season. Leonard simply doesn’t match up against all those accolades.
Still, some can’t help but have a biased opinion, and Kyle Anderson made that fact perfectly clear after the blowout win against the Heat:
Good win tonight. always fun to watch/be apart of! That man Whi is looking like the best player in the league!! #MVP
— SLOWMO (@KyleAnderson5) March 24, 2016
Yes, Kyle. Without a question, Leonard is the MVP of the Spurs.
Jim Park is a blogger and Tweet of the Night author of Sheridan Hoops. Follow him on twitter @SheridanBlog.