On Thursday night, the NBA announced the finalists for all of the award categories”Inside The NBA” on TNT. According to ESPN’s Tim Bontemps, the finalists for MVP are Nikola Jokić, Stephen Curry, and Joel Embiid.
If you asked Haywood, the runaway MVP is Nikola Jokic, but earlier this season, he detailed how he could win the award.
“I’m going to say this, and I think more people should feel this one. It is not the sexy pick; it is not the name people want to see; his game is not flashy. If the Denver Nuggets finish in the top three in the west, and Joker’s number, they like this where he is average 26 [points], 12 [rebounds], and 9 [assists}. He should be the MVP,” said Haywood.
TNT’s Jared Greenberg is a voting media member. He was a guest on Instagram Live with Brendan Haywood and Ryan Hollins on Wednesday evening. During his appearance, Greenberg broke down the voting process.
“Here’s the thing, though, and Brendan hates to have this conversation. When voting for MVP, you have to fill out five lines. So, when we talk about the conversation, I am always trying to figure it out because the ballots are transparent. People will be able to see how I voted actually one through five. So, I get [push back] because I put somebody on the five-line, and they wanted to be on the four-line. It is so dumb the way this stuff works. That is why this conversation is so intense as it is, but I will say this what [Steph] Curry did the last couple of weeks of the season did make me put him in the top five,” said Greenberg.
“So, I filled my ballot out on Sunday and didn’t submit it until Monday because we had to put it in. And initially, I had Julius Randle and I put Curry in instead of Randle at number five. But, the funny thing about LeBron and I give him a lot of credit. He is the smartest superstar of all-time. This dude is setting the narrative to go either way. Either tonight he beats the MVP of the league and he overcame that, or if he loses, he lost to the MVP of the league. It is brilliant how LeBron does this stuff.”
They would go on to talk about how Stephen Curry’s national attention can actually sway votes away from Jokic despite him actually having a better overall season than Steph.