Should there ever be a “unanimous” MVP?
Tuesday, May 10, the Golden State Warriors’ point guard Stephen Curry was named the NBA’s Most Valuable Player for the second year in a row.
As much as the award is deserved, the most noteworthy aspect was that the vote was unanimous. This was unprecedented, as there has never been a unanimous MVP in the history of the National Basketball Association.
This has caused some discussion on whether there should be such a thing as “unanimous” MVP.
The NBA first awarded the MVP award in the 1955-1956 season. Originally, the MVP was decided by the players, but since the ‘80-’81 season, sportswriters and broadcasters in the U.S. and Canada have decided the vote.
Each person votes for first place through fifth place, with a first place vote being worth 10 points.
This means that all 121 voters thought Curry deserved the first place vote. The only players to ever come close to such an achievement were Shaquille O’Neal after leading the Lakers to the championship as well as being the top scorer in the league, and Lebron James in 2013 when he lead the Miami Heat to their second consecutive championship against the San Antonio Spurs. Both Shaq and Lebron were short by only one vote.
Some have argued that there should never be a unanimous MVP, as doing so would ruin the purity of the game.
Most famously, Ken Griffey Jr. was not voted unanimously for this reason in Major League Baseball. It was argued that he was guaranteed to get MVP, so the vote should have gone to someone else.
But regardless of any “purity” of the game, I believe unanimous MVP should be allowed to happen. Nothing should bar a player from receiving their due praise if they are deserving of it. And Steph Curry has proved he is more than deserving of being the unanimous MVP.
He helped lead Golden State to their first championship in 40 years against a Lebron-led Cleveland Cavaliers.
During the 2012-13 NBA season, Curry set the regular season record for three-pointers with 272. He then surpassed that record in 2014-15 with 286 and then again this season with 402. He didn’t just beat his own record; he demolished it.
Additionally, he and Klay Thompson set the NBA combined three-pointer record with 484 in 2013-14 and broke it in the two years after that, raising the record to 525 and then to 678.
He leads the league in scoring and is a member of the 50-40-90 club. For those who do not know, this means that Curry had a field goal percentage of at least 50 percent (a field goal is any shot in basketball that is not a free throw), landed at least 40 percent of his three-pointers and has a 90 percent free throw percentage.
Not only that, Curry led the Warriors to a regular season win-loss record of 63-9. This was the most wins in a season in NBA history. The previous record of 62-10 had been set by Michael Jordan and his legendary Chicago Bulls.
Curry has already proven himself to be the greatest shooter in NBA history and one of the greatest of all time. There is an active discussion on whether he is the greatest of all time, above Kobe, Lebron and even Jordan.
Curry proved he was the MVP this season, and his stats have only proven he was the unanimous MVP. Calling someone a unanimous MVP doesn’t dilute the game in any way; it merely bestows the recognition a player deserves.