NBA’s new conference finals MVP award: Who should have won it in past seasons. The NBA recently introduced new awards to honour the most valuable player in Western Conference Finals (Named after Magic Johnson from Los Angeles Lakers) and Eastern Conference Finals ( named after Larry Bird of the Boston Celics). This is the first time such an honour has been extended in the playoff matches which was earlier restricted only to the final game.
The first player to win the Earvin Magic Johnson West Finals MVP was Stephen Curry of Golden State Warriors. In this regard, let us take a look at some of the earlier players from the past who deserved this award at that time.
In the past decade, LeBron managed to get the MVP in the finals for nearly 6 times and if the award was given a decade earlier in the new category, he would have had a huge number of awards.
Similarly, Giannis Antetokounmpo was one of the best players during 1980s finals but Middleton managed to outsmart in the final game and this is the reason the overall performance of the top scoring player was neglected. At that that, giannis would have taken the MVP award.
Interestingly, LeBron got his ninth conference finals MVP. However, Kavis with an average of more than 31 points and also hit the biggest shot of the series. When the same thing is seen from the per-minute basis performance, the best player for the Suns was Paul with an average of 24 points. Even though there were many others who performed equally well in the series, voter sentiment would have easily favoured Paul as his team reached the NBA finals in that series.
In recent times, the idea of high usage star players has come under question as they have not played deep into the post season in most cases. Doncic became the first player of the group to even reach the conference finals. This has led to a situation where teams are struggling in the playoffs due to dependency on stars.
However, there is another argument that the teams are dependent on stars as they do not have enough support. The new awards from the NBA which also considers the performance of the players in the playoffs is a good move as it gives recognition to good players from teams that do not reach the top stage in the tournament. In this way, the teams that reach the finals do not get any preference and it gives fair chance to all other players in the series.