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NBA MVP Power Rankings: LeBron James Enters The Race

NBA MVP Power Rankings: LeBron James Enters The Race

The All-Star break is only a few weeks away and we have a solid indication of what to expect from the best players and the best teams in the NBA. Some teams have taken their levels up a notch, with the likes of the Golden State Warriors and Phoenix Suns competing at a high level as they look to make a Finals run. We have also seen the best players in the NBA distance themselves from the rest of the pack.

Here are the updated MVP power rankings. We have seen the appearance of an all-time great player climb into the rankings because his play has been out of this world, regardless of team performance. We are also seeing two superstars jostle for the top spot in the MVP rankings as Kevin Durant officially drops out of the race for the rest of the year.

10. Rudy Gobert

(via SLC Dunk)

(via SLC Dunk)

2021-2022 Season Statistics: 16.0 PPG, 15.1 RPG, 1.2 APG, 0.8 SPG, 2.3 BPG

The big Frenchman is having a sensational season because he might be the most impactful defensive player in the league. Gobert is averaging 16.0 PPG and 15.1 PPG, great numbers for a player who is not even a focal point of the Utah Jazz offense.

As a shot blocker and rim protector, no player has played better than Rudy this year. As great as Donovan Mitchell is, it has been the center that has played the best for one of the top teams in the West. The Jazz hold the 4th seed in the West, and they could climb the rankings once they get fully healthy.

9. James Harden

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2021-2022 Season Statistics: 23.0 PPG, 8.1 RPG, 10.1 APG, 1.3 SPG, 0.7 BPG

James Harden is not struggling anymore, rather he is back to his best. The Beard is putting up triple-doubles on a consistent basis again and his numbers this season have been worthy of MVP contention. Unfortunately, his team-record could be at risk due to Kevin Durant’s injury.

Therefore it is very conceivable that Harden will have to fight for his place in the MVP rankings because the Nets could start losing games after the All-Star break. Kyrie Irving is a part-time player, so James might not have enough help to win enough games in the East before the playoffs start.

8. Ja Morant

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2021-2022 Season Statistics: 25.8 PPG, 5.9 RPG, 6.9 APG, 1.3 SPG, 0.4 BPG

Probably the most exciting player in the league this year, Ja Morant has blossomed into a superstar player and there is no question about that. The explosive shooting guard is unstoppable when he attacks the rim, and he has a long way to go to reach his absolute prime as he continues to improve his shooting.

But because of Morant, the Memphis Grizzlies hold a top-4 record in the West when nobody thought that was possible at the start of the year. Even if Memphis won’t be winning a title this year, it wouldn’t be that shocking if they somehow make the Western Conference Finals thanks to their superstar point guard.

7. Zach LaVine

Zach LaVine

2021-2022 Season Statistics: 24.9 PPG, 4.9 RPG, 4.3 APG, 0.7 SPG, 0.4 BPG

Alongside DeMar DeRozan, Zach LaVine has done a fantastic job of making the Chicago Bulls title contenders. If they remain as the number one seed in the East and find a way to manage without the services of the injured Alex Caruso, it will be hard to see them not making the Eastern Conference Finals.

Zach LaVine is a high flyer and we all know that, but his offensive game has become extremely refined. The shooting guard is putting up solid scoring numbers, but his shooting splits are incredibly good. Averaging 48.8% from the field, 40.4% from three, and 87.1% from the line are certainly of MVP standard.

6. DeMar DeRozan

DeMar DeRozan

2021-2022 Season Statistics: 26.4 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 4.8 APG, 0.8 SPG, 0.3 BPG

DeMar DeRozan’s season with the Bulls is one of the best feel-good stories in sports. The forgotten All-Star was given away by the Toronto Raptors a few years ago and wasn’t needed by the Lakers last year. But he has proved all doubters wrong, playing at an extremely high level.

The most clutch player in the league this season, DeRozan is putting up elite scoring numbers while taking over 4th quarters for his team. With his solid mid-range game and athleticism, DeRozan is one of the best offensive players in the game and just misses out of the top-5 in MVP rankings.

5. LeBron James

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2021-2022 Season Statistics: 29.1 PPG, 7.7 RPG, 6.3 APG, 1.6 SPG, 1.1 BPG

Despite his team’s putrid record, LeBron James has to be in the MVP race. His performances this season have been extraordinary for a player in his 19th season, and he continues to make it look normal for a player at age 37 to play as if he was 10 years younger. Regardless, James is once again a top-5 player in the game and belongs in the MVP conversation.

LeBron will have stiff competition to break into the top-3 in the MVP race, but if he can finish the season as the leading scorer and somehow get the Lakers past the play-in tournament, it would be hard to bet against him. As of right now, The King is in the top-5 race for the MVP race, an incredible feat for a player in year 19.

4. Chris Paul

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2021-2022 Season Statistics: 14.5 PPG, 4.4 RPG, 10.1 APG, 1.9 SPG, 0.3 BPG

Chris Paul is almost 37 years old but does not look like it by any means. The point guard is still one of the best floor generals in the game and has helped the Phoenix Suns earn the top seed in the Western Conference yet again. The Suns have a great team with Devin Booker, Deandre Ayton, and a talented young coach in Monty Williams; but Paul is the undisputed leader of the franchise.

CP3 is once again averaging a double-double for a season, and he is playing a solid amount of minutes for an injury-prone point guard with a ton of mileage on his legs. Averaging 32.7 MPG this season, Paul is easily a top-3 point guard in the game and has been consistent since the start of the season.

3. Joel Embiid

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2021-2022 Season Statistics: 28.9 PPG, 10.7 RPG, 4.3 APG, 1.0 SPG, 1.5 BPG

There is a ton of heated debate on which center is the best in the league: Joel Embiid or Nikola Jokic. No matter which player you lean towards, there is no doubt that Embiid is the most offensively talented big man in the game right now. The Cameroonian center is putting up monster numbers, leading his team to a playoff seeding without Ben Simmons, and is having a massive impact on the defensive end. Quite frankly, we have not seen many big men throughout NBA history with the skills of Embiid.

The center is easily a top-3 MVP candidate, climbing the rankings due to his incredible work over the past few weeks. No matter who Embiid is playing against, he always shows up and shows out. The superstar’s shooting numbers are incredible for a big man, as he is nailing 49.7% from the field, 36.5% from three, and 81.2% from the free-throw line. Joel Embiid is one of the best players in the NBA, and he is only two players as the favorite for the MVP award.

2. Nikola Jokic

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2021-2022 Season Statistics: 26.2 PPG, 13.8 RPG, 7.6 APG, 1.4 SPG, 0.8 BPG

Nikola Jokic has been sensational this season for the Denver Nuggets, averaging a double-double and carrying the Denver Nuggets to a playoff seed despite all odds. People seem to forget that Jamal Murray has yet to play a game this season while Michael Porter Jr is likely out for an extended time as well. With the second and third-best player on the team out of action, the big Serbian has had arguably the heaviest load to carry in the league.

Everything Jokic does, he does at an elite level. Obviously, his assist numbers are off the charts for a big man because putting up nearly 8 APG consistently is unheard of for a 7-footer. Defensively, Jokic has also been excellent because his raw size and physicality make him a force protecting the rim. On offense, the reigning MVP is shooting 57.1% from the field, 37.1% from three, and 80.6% from the stripe. If not for one man’s stellar play all season, Nikola Jokic would be the favorite to capture his second straight MVP award.

1. Giannis Antetokounmpo

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2021-2022 Season Statistics: 28.6 PPG, 11.2 RPG, 6.0 APG, 1.0 SPG, 1.5 BPG

The Greek Freak, Giannis Antetokounmpo, is once again having an extraordinary season for the Milwaukee Bucks. The talented forward affect the game in all areas, be it scoring, defense, playmaking, or rebounding. The 2-time MVP looks in a prime position to capture his 3rd award because he is guiding Milwaukee to strong standing in the East yet again.

It is amazing how Giannis has been able to accomplish so much with the Bucks since becoming a superstar because he has made the team a force for years now. The criticisms about Antetokounmpo’s ability to come up big in important moments are washed away, and there is no doubt the superstar big man will be one of the best players in the world once the playoffs are near. As things stand, Giannis is the leading MVP candidate and has been in a firm position for a few months now.


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