NBA / Mar 27, 2012 / 3:00 pm

The Top 10 NBA MVP Candidates, Week 4

Derrick Rose

Derrick Rose (photo. adidas)

Could this be the week that Kevin Durant passes LeBron James? It’s been the topic of discussion for the majority of the week, leading up to their Sunday night faceoff (in which Durant came out on top). Many have come to the conclusion that Durant has finally edged LeBron for first place in the race to the MVP. LeBron has been having one of the most impressive seasons by an individual since Michael Jordan was playing. The month of March hasn’t been his best, but there’s a lot of basketball left to be played.

Durant and the Thunder have been playing great basketball, during a time when LeBron and Miami are playing inconsistently. The Thunder still have a better record than Miami, and Durant has a higher scoring average than LeBron. So it’s understandable why someone would decide that the time has come for Durant to takeover as the frontrunner for the MVP.

However my friends, you cannot forget so quickly the type of season LeBron James has been having. It’s extremely close between the two now, but LeBron is still having the better season. Sunday night was just round one; come April 4, Durant and LeBron will face off again in Miami. This meeting will ultimately prove who deserves the number one spot going into the final weeks of the season.

The competition heats up in our fourth edition of our weekly “Race to the MVP” Watch. Here is our MVP update for last week, (Monday through Sunday)…

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10. DERRICK ROSE – Last week: 32 pts/7 ast/6 rebs
Last Week: No. 5, falling
Rose hasn’t played a game since March 12, but the Bulls are still playing the best basketball in the league. He’ll be out for another week, but his body of work up until now has the Bulls in a place where they can almost afford for him to be gone. Miami hasn’t been playing great lately, and have fallen five wins behind Chicago, so they don’t have to worry about losing first place. Also, the Bulls were the first team to clinch a playoff berth. Overall Rose has the Bulls in a great place, and when he returns he will definitely be right back in the MVP conversation.

9. TONY PARKER – Last week: 11.6 ppg/7.6 apg/1.0 rpg
LW: No. 10, rising
Tony Parker still managed to play well this week despite his limited minutes. He only played 10 minutes against Minnesota on Wednesday but still managed to dish out six helpers. He made some crucial plays in a three-point win over New Orleans in a game where he had a double-double. Then against Philly he put up 21 points on 9-for-17 shooting and dished out seven assists. Overall, a solid week for Parker and a 3-0 week for the Spurs keeps him in the top 10.

8. CHRIS PAUL – Last Week: 17.8 ppg/10.0 apg/2.8 spg
LW: maintaining
Chris Paul and the Clippers just can’t catch a rhythm. The addition of Nick Young hasn’t proved just yet to fill the void left by Chauncey BIllups. But it’s clear CP3 doesn’t want to be the one taking the most shots. Paul is a natural point guard playing on a team with other talented players. Even if the Clippers need him to take the most shots, he still won’t want to do that.

Chris Paul only scored over 20 in one of his five games last week, which was the only game he took over 15 shots. In my opinion he knows the Clippers can’t achieve the long-term success he has in mind if he’s the number one scoring option. Although the formula has proved to be successful for Rose and the Bulls, who have been playing the best regular season basketball for the past two years, CP3 wants to take the Clippers down a different path.

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