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Wednesday, February 13th, 2013 at 10:50 am  |  99 responses

Carmelo Anthony Says It’s Too Early to Declare LeBron James the MVP


by Marcel Mutoni @ marcel_mutoni

The Miami Heat (35-14) have 33 games remaining on their regular season schedule, and unless something drastic happens, LeBron James will walk away with the fourth MVP award of his career (and second in a row.)

Not so fast, says Carmelo Anthony.

Melo — who enjoyed some MVP hype early on — admits that he’s awed by the historic season LeBron is having, but isn’t ready to hand him the Maurice Podoloff Trophy just yet.

Per the NY Post:

“It’s early,” said Anthony. “It’s All-Star break right now. He’s definitely playing like a Most Valuable Player so we’ll see what happens.”

Regardless of whether the media types who eventually decide the award send the trophy to Miami for James, to Los Angeles for Kobe Bryant or Chris Paul, to Oklahoma City for Kevin Durant, to San Antonio for Tony Parker or to New York for Anthony, the Knicks’ superb forward acknowledged his Heat rival has been unreal. “That’s crazy. What he’s doing right now is unbelievable. He’s scoring 30, 40 points on 11 shots, [shooting] 10-for-12. He’s on an incredible run right now,” Anthony said. “I’ve never seen anything like it.”

LeBron James’ current level of play could begin to tail off later on in the season, assuming the Miami Heat build a comfortable lead atop the Eastern Conference standings (Carmelo’s New York Knicks are in second place, and 3 games back of the defending champs.)

The MVP is very much LeBron’s to lose, which seems like an increasingly unlikely possibility.

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  • shockexchange

    King James + mastery of “The Rules” = MVP

  • JohnD

    L.B.J.
    first

  • Caboose

    If I had to rank the MVP race right now:
    Bron, Parker, Durant, Paul, Melo, Westbrook. After that it really tails off.

  • underdog

    Despite the fact that LBJ is undisputedly the best basketball player on the planet, I’d rather see CP3 as MVP this year. (if the Clips can stay it the top 3 in the west)

  • robb

    I don’t see how Lebron couldn’t win it. He’s playing one of the best basketball we’ve ever seen.

  • spit hot fiyah

    off course a lot can still happen, but it’s lebron’s to lose

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mike-Gilbert/100001749589586 Mike Gilbert

    Melo don’t got a chance anyway…It’s
    1. Lebron
    1.5 Durant
    everyone else

  • Matt

    In order?

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    it’s LeBron.
    .
    And then Chris Paul and Kevin Durant.
    .
    I 60% expect one of the two who aren’t really the MVP to win it, because that’s how voters think. they get tired of the obvious choice.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    why in the world would Parker be over Paul? it’s most valuable, did you see how bad the Clippers were without Paul?

  • KevinJohnsonFan

    He’s having a better season than he had last year (which was one of the all-time greatest individual seasons). If it continues, they can’t give the award to anyone else.

  • Happy

    That’s a list of the league’s two best players, not necessarily the most valuable. You can’t say CP3 doesn’t deserve it as much as those two do when the Clippers are contenders with him, and a losing team without him.

  • logues

    exactly. otherwise mj would have about 10 mvps

  • Max

    For CP3 to have a chance to win it they have to finish with the best record in the L.

  • Caboose

    We’re gonna end up arguing over the definition of MVP aren’t we? Yes, by that definition, Paul is #2, just outside of #1.

  • AQWORD

    LeBron owns it this year. He ain’t losing nothing. Mellow – Back up off his tip. Underdog why does CP3 deserve it if he aint the best baller on the planet. See that ? I overstood your underhanded way :-)

  • danpowers

    chris paul is doin in the “small mans land” what bron is doin in the “big mans land”. no offense on bron, he is playin as one of the greatest ever. but so does paul. just take a look at the clips record with paul n without him. when he is healthy the team is the best squad in the nba (in the WEST) and they arent even coached well. without him they would struggle to even make the playoffs. take james of the heat, they might do still well coz bosh and wade blay great as well and the team is well coached. that doesnt make brons performance any worse but is also an arguement in the mvp debate.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mike-Gilbert/100001749589586 Mike Gilbert

    I don’t think he is personally, but you are right it could be argued that CP3 is more valuable…but the Clippers would not be a losing team without him, they are 6-6 this year without him and would be better if they were a team without him and not just filling in his role until he comes back.

  • Happy

    They aren’t a playoff team without him. 6-6 is nothing to be proud of. The Heat and the Thunder are both playoff teams without those two guys, making Chris more valuable to his team’s success no matter how you slice it. I don’t understand what you mean by they would be better if they were a team without him. Their record sucks when he’s out, and it really doesn’t matter why.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mike-Gilbert/100001749589586 Mike Gilbert

    I mean when he is out they are filling his role with a bench player…then the rotations get altered…people are playing roles they normally don’t…They would have a better record if he was never on their team and they had permanent roles that they were used to without him. This isn’t like the Bulls team when Rose won MVP. These Clippers have a loaded team!

  • Happy

    How does that not make him as valuable to his team’s success this season as Durant and Lebron? A hypothetical situation doesn’t change the team’s record without him. We can play ‘what if’ with every team’s roster in the league and it wouldn’t strengthen your argument as to why he isn’t the most valuable player to his team as it stands this season.

    (Also, basically that same Bulls team maintained their no. 1 spot the next season when Rose was out significantly).

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    LOL, so what would we argue about? – you have a different definition of words in english?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mike-Gilbert/100001749589586 Mike Gilbert

    no you are right this is stupid and pointless to play what if. It is a tough argument because it isn’t just about facts. You are right though, CP3 should be in the conversation, and while I’m at it I guess I can throw in Melo and TP….I still think it should go to either Bron or KD…I mean they are having historic seasons….

  • boooo

    Personally, i think if the heat lost lebron for the season and the clippers lost cp3, i think clipper would be the better team out of the two! They’ve got bledsoe as their backup pg, and one of the best benches in the league. The heat would only have two quality players left on the team, and battier, cole, allen, chalmers and miller would not be getting half as many open shots as they get now!! So personally, i don’t think there is any argument for anybody but lebron as mvp!

  • http://www.facebook.com/chris.callihan1 Chris Callihan

    Put LBJ or KD on any other team and they are that team’s most valuable player, it’s simple really

  • 23

    Cp3 does make that team a contender. but the Clippers are the most stacked team(talent wise) that I have seen in a long time. I don’t think they became legitimate contenders the day they signed cp3. I think they became serious when they got their role players this offseason. My point being cp3 alone doesn’t make a team a contender for a chip ala LeBron, kobe, Durant or Howard(when healthy). Those guys earned that rep by leading their teams to the finals. Something cp3 has yet to do. now that he has a really good cast I think they got a serious chance.

  • 23

    They are the deepest team I can remember. Those deep Nash-led Phoenix teams come to.mind.

  • 23

    Whose bench is as good as the clips? Which bench in the past several seasons? Maybe the championship Mavs?

  • 23

    I think you’re wrong. Yes lately wade has been on a tear. but he is not very consistent. I don’t think he and Bosh could accomplish anything close to what they are with LeBron

  • 23

    That’s alot. 10? Wow

  • Happy

    That’s a foolish argument. You could put Shaq on any team during his prime and he’d also be those teams’ most valuable player. Should he have won every single year?

    The question is who is more valuable to the team the currently play on. That answer is Paul.

  • danpowers

    wade shares the crown with kobe es the best sg in the l. throughout the last years he was always better / more efficient than kobe. last year he struggled through his injury. dont underestimate him. that guy is a hall of famer and second to none on his position. bosh on any team as the main guy is a 20 – 10 guy. true, with bron they are the team to beat for anyone who wants to win the chip, they are THE contender. without him theyd still be at least in the field of contending teams. cp3s team prolly wouldnt even make the playoffs without him. once again, i dont want to say anything bad about james recent play. i have never seen anything like that b4. jordan, shaq, hakeem all had different ways to dominate. but james just mastered the game with a basketball iq that ive never seen b4 from a forward

  • danpowers

    didnt u see their record without cp3? they are bad coached. yes they have a great bench but this bench loses alot of its punch with bledsoe or crawford in the s5. important players like billups and butler are extremely injury prone. jordan cant play in the cluth and i doubt that griffin is ready yet to hit clutch free throws in tight playoff games down the stretch even if his life depended on it. they stumbled badly without cp3 for a reason. with him they are great tho

  • danpowers

    looked a little different in their last outing but the knicks bench equals the clips bench imo

  • danpowers

    so do the fans. id see it is a nice honour and maybe making up for robbing cp3 e.g. in one of the nash-mvp years. or durant for just pushing a new nba role model. everybody knows that bron is by far the best player in the l, no further validation needed lol

  • danpowers

    …and karl malone none

  • danpowers

    1 lebron

    2 cp3
    3 durant

  • http://twitter.com/niQknacks niQ

    Lebron is just lucky Brian Scalabrine retired.

  • danpowers

    a fair sollution would be to give chris paul the coach of the year award.

  • danpowers

    given the clippers level of talent and record without him the nba should seriously consider handing out coach of the year honours to paul this year

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    uhm, the only person robbed in the Nash years was Shaq. And that was just the first year. The second year? without Amar’e? Nash deserved that MVP. The team was HORRIBLE without Nash on the court. And the best team in the League with him. And i really hate the idea that you would award a player for something that happened over half a decade ago.
    .
    But i do expect Durant or Paul to win for the latter reason.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mike-Gilbert/100001749589586 Mike Gilbert

    lol EXACTLY

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Junior-Taylor/100003121138419 Junior Taylor

    A lot could change in a matter of weeks maybe days. MIA goes to OKC Thursday night and if KD outplays LeBron, I’m betting the narrative changes.

  • Caboose

    Haha oh c’mon, you know how the voters define MVP is ridiculously inconsistent. Best player on best team? Best overall performance? Player whose team would struggle the most without him? It’s some combination of the 3, but in what proportion, I don’t know.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    now now now, you know your opinion should reflect your opinion and not everyone else’s. what is YOUR opinion of the MVP race?

  • Jim

    It is most certainly early but I think this is a case of jealousy. I think he’s just upset that for he rest of his career he has to watch as either lebron or KD get all the mvps

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mike-Gilbert/100001749589586 Mike Gilbert

    I’m not convinced….I mean the Clippers are STACKED without CP3…sure they limped to a mediocre 6-6 without him, but they also blew out the Griz.

  • O

    Melo, you my nucca, but come on, guy…

  • AQWORD

    Ok. Bron is being a great playmaker in the big man’s land + playing great D while keeping his team focused while he’s at it. Exactly, when C.P. is not healthy the Clips are not great. I think Bron should get MVP for staying indestructible. Does C.P. play great D ? Nope. He got schooled by Stephen Curry who in my eyes will surpass C.P. in your debate. Boy got game. Fair enough though . argue on… one outcome though BRON = M.V.P.

  • pposse

    Where is this CP should be MVP over KD coming from?? He doesnt have better stats than KD nor does his team having a better record than the thunder. Ridiculous.

  • LakeShow

    It’s because it’s the MVP award.
    Stats, and record do not determine it, but rather a combination many things. One of which is how your team plays without you. CP3 is one of the most valuable players for his team in he L. Maybe the most valuable.

  • Happy

    I could be wrong, but I do remember the same thing you’re talking about happening last year. KD ended up with better stats than Lebron, and after that one game everyone was saying KD should be MVP. I hate that people are so fickle that they allow single games to determine an award for an entire season.

  • pposse

    CP is no slouch or anything but i mean c’mon, to this point in the season both KD and Bron Bron are having historic seasons, how can it not be one of those two guys??!

  • Happy

    Again, none of what you are saying about talent matters when the record speaks for itself.

    Wins and losses with and without that player determines how valuable they are to the team. 31-11 with him, 6-6 without him. What else needs to be said besides that?

  • LakeShow

    I agree they are top 2, but it is really hard to say CP3 is not in the MVP race. He’s just too good not to be.
    Plus, stats = schmats…
    His stats aren’t as good because he only plays 32 mins a game! Bron and KD are both above 38… That’s certainly not a knock on Paul, Bledsoe is just that good that CP3 can rest.

  • k-Dub

    Durant wont win a MVP until Lebron turns about 32. Because his style of play and stats are not as exciting as Lebron’s. Just the scoring is incredible. In saying that the next 4 years the MVP Race will be D Rose vs Lebron.

  • Dutch Rich

    His durability has added value wouldn’t you say?

  • Dutch Rich

    Only at the 1 and 2. At the 1 it’s glaring as Bled has shown he’s hardly ready for pure point guard duty and doesn’t take open shots.

  • whooo!

    top 3 won’t cut it, Clips need to dominate and finish best in the West at least. no way CP3 can finish behind both OKC/SA, while Durant/Parker put up similar/better stats, and still win MVP. it’s just too hard of a case for voters to make (this doesn’t even include Lebron yet)

    also, i actually thought Lebron’s stats would blow KD out the water, but they’re not that different: 27/8.1/6.9 on 56% shooting vs 29/7.4/4.4 on 52% shooting. Lebron has an edge, but i imagine their records are also gonna be pretty similar… it might come down to whoever makes the biggest splash in the final month to sway voters’ short-term memories.

  • Shmomo

    I don’t think Kobe has made the Lakers a contender this season

  • monkeyball

    The fact that he only plays 32mpg should count against him for MVP. He’s just not contributing as much to team success as the guy playing 38mpg.

  • LakeShow

    Nope, it shouldn’t.
    It should say even more about him.
    He puts his team in the best position to win, in fewer minutes played than anyone else.

  • Jone

    haha melo thinks he has a chance… that’s sooo funny!!!

  • The Fury

    Larry Bird

  • danpowers

    lol rose wasnt really THE mvp when he won it, as you can also see at the recent bulls record. hes a great player but by far no mvp. that award was more about pushing the league’s next darling than honouring performance. as i said, great player tho

  • Max

    Couldn’t agree more.

  • Caboose

    Grr, if I have to be specific, I’d say it’s:
    50% best player on best team, 35% the collapse of a team without said player, and 15% sheer performance. By that logic, I think my list is sound. You have your own philosophy which is fine, I’m just saying my view is still logically consistent.

  • http://www.facebook.com/Brill86 Andrew Woods

    Listening to so much converage of Lebron made a question pop in my head. Instead of comparing LeBron to Jordan, I’d like to know who was the better ‘sidekick’…dwade or pippen? Me personally I’d say Pippen by a lot.

  • Slick Ric

    Not true, his second MVP came after MJ retired the second time.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Not arguing with your logic. Just wanted your reasoning, not everyone else’s. I already get how the voting typically works lol

  • 23

    Ok yeah obviously kobe isn’t at that point in his career anymore. I guess o should’ve been more specific.

  • 23

    The record does speak to the players importance to some degree, but its not the only barometer. I think you have to take into consideration who the comp was.

  • 23

    Agreed, he was the anti-lebron.

  • 23

    Wade has been very inconsistent throughout his career, although it is obviously due to durability issues. But imo if you cant give your all on the court every night, due to injuries or any other reason, I am not gonna give you the same glory I would if you were healthy. Look at the pavers series last year. Look at the Celtics series. Look at the bulls series from ’11. Wade has been to inconsistent to make the case that hes capable of leading a team deep into the playoffs. If wade was not as fragile then yes i would agree. But he’s not.

  • 23

    I agree. As weird as it sounds I think wade was a better leader, but pippens game is better suited as a complementary player.

  • 23

    LeBron and Melo’s names were always linked, but now its KD and LeBron.

  • Caboose

    Ah, fair enough. Well yes, those are my qualifications for MVP. Therefore, LeBron is number 1 as he is by far the best player on the 3rd best team, his performance this year is unmatched in roughly a decade, but I think the Heat would be OK without him, but not crazy dominant. Parker on the other hand has been consistently the best player on the best team, he’s putting up crazy shooting numbers for a point guard, but, like LeBron, the team would probably be ok without him. The reason I have Paul lower is that the Clips aren’t doing as well. Granted, he was out, which does serve to prove that he is valuable to his team. However, his performance isn’t near LeBron or Tony and, missing games (even if your team struggles or not) means you aren’t adding value. So yeah, I think my list (based on my arbitrary criterion) is good.

  • RKJ92

    You forgot about defense and shutting oposing teams players down. Though statistically they are close defensively they are not, LeBron blows KD’s defense out of the water easilyyyy

  • RKJ92

    LOL Parker over Durant, and Paul that actually gave me a good laugh :)

  • Yi-Cheng Chen

    i sense jealousy.

  • underdog

    IMHO the MVP award is not about who is the best, but who is the most important to his team. I mean Nash has won twice as many MVP awards as Kobe. It can’t be about who is the best…

  • http://www.facebook.com/shooting.guard.319 Shooting Guard

    he should be more concerned with getting a ring

  • http://www.facebook.com/dan.cohn.77 Dan Cohn

    Lebron doesnt show up to games and miss 19 fckn shots you might as well give that trophy to lebron right now cause theirs no way that melo has a shot at it the knicks are basically a 500 ball team mvp’s come from winning ballclubs!!!!

  • 池昊晨

    haah

  • 池昊晨

    hello

  • danpowers

    last year he played with plantar fasciitis and was still better / more efficient than bryant. tell me any sg in the l who could do that. wade is a finals mvp, a future hall of famer and given through how many injuries he battled without missing too many games i wouldnt call him “fragile”. penny hardaway, tracy mcgrady or vince carter were fragile, but not wade. he was able to adjust. do those numbers anyhow look like the performance of a fragile player? http://www.basketball-reference.com/players/w/wadedw01.html i dont think so

  • danpowers

    maybe

  • pposse

    D Rose provides mental stability for the bulls with or without him on the court. At the end of the day all of these guys are the top 200-300 basketball players on the planet. IE: Whats separates a Kobe Bryant from a Danny Granger is moreso his mentality then the skills/ talent.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    What about Paul defensively? He’s prolly been the best in the league all season, and only in 32 minutes at that? Look how many steals he has compared to turnovers. Seriously do it, showing you myself doesn’t do it justice.

  • danpowers

    coach thibs and the team as a whole provide great defense and teamplay on offense. that lets any scorer look great as a player.

  • pposse

    Ofcourse, and im not going to deny that. The two most important pieces on the Bulls is Rose and Thibs in that order imo. Here’s a tid bit of what D Rose said yesterday when speaking to reporters:

    “It’s great, man, knowing that they’re winning games,” he said. “It seems like they’re fighting for me so I don’t have anything but respect for how hard they’ve been working.”

    Im swaying towards believing that what he said in that quote is %100 true. Its the same type of mentality that “Lebron-fidence” used to give the Cleveland Cavs squads.

    To say that D Rose is only a great scorer is a little harsh and unfair.

  • Caboose

    Agreed, dude is RUTHLESSLY efficient. I’m just going on preference here man, there’s really no need debating who wins the non-existent silver.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    did you look at those turnovers to steals numbers though? it’s seriously mind boggling

  • Caboose

    Agreed. Agreed. Know what else is mind-boggling? TP shooting a better percentage than Durant. I mean, he’s averaging 21 and 8 in under 33 minutes a game. While shooting almost 54% from the floor with only .4 more TO’s per game than Paul. Crazy.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    that is pretty outrageous, but understandable with the different in attempts and 3′s. but, admittedly, part of my issue with Parker as MVP is he has Pop. I don’t think Parker is more valuable then his coach. While say James, Paul, & Durant are.

  • danpowers

    i didnt say he is only a great scorer. i said any good scorer would look good on this team. in my statement above i even said ” as i said, great player tho”. not only scorer, i said “great player”, sir

  • Caboose

    And see I agree, but that argument only fits to 35% of my criterion.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    But Paul has him statistically too lol

  • C0P0

    Not for the writers and analyst.

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