Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo winning his second consecutive NBA MVP Award over Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James wasn’t much of a surprise as most reports pointed toward that result.
But the margin by which Antetokounmpo won the award was relatively shocking as it seemed to be a much closer race on the court. James garnered just 16 of 101 first-place votes with Antetokounmpo picking up the other 85 for a landslide victory.
That didn’t sit well with James, who admitted to being upset about the result, and he wasn’t the only one. His superstar teammate Anthony Davis wasn’t too happy with it either and wouldn’t mind some changes to the voting process.
“I’m not sure how they can do the vote,” Davis said. “I think we can get the players more involved, for sure. We’re actually the ones who are out there playing against these guys, and if you look around the league, a lot of the players say LeBron should be MVP.”
Getting players involved in the voting would definitely be a big change and Davis isn’t wrong about many players believing LeBron deserved the award. Both James and Giannis were more than deserving.
Of course, all awards are voted on by the media, and Davis thinks that can lend itself to certain narratives being painted too early.
“I think it’s just the narrative people’s giving. They kind of choose the MVP before the season even starts, you know,” he added.
There is no doubt that narratives can shape the awards races at times, especially when it comes to players like James who has long been considered the best player in the league and has multiple MVP Awards already.
Oftentimes media and fans look for different stories in a season simply due to fatigue of certain players.
The league did recently change its voting for All-Star starters, allowing for players and coaches to be involved in that choice in addition to the fan vote.
Commissioner Adam Silver has always been open to any suggestions, but whether a change to the voting is on the horizon is anyone’s guess. If the idea of players having a say in awards choices gains some steam, Silver will undoubtedly listen.
LeBron Questions MVP voting criteria
Davis isn’t the only one wondering about the process of MVP voting as James himself had some questions. He has won the award four times, but his last came in 2013.
“I’m not going to sit up here and talk about what the criteria should be or what it is,” James said. “It’s changed over the years since I’ve gotten into the league, I know that. It’s changed a lot.
“You know, sometimes it’s the best player on the best team. Sometimes it’s the guy with the best season statistically. It’s changed over the course of my career.”
LeBron did credit Antetokounmpo for an outstanding season as he did improve his numbers from last year’s MVP campaign and the Bucks had the best record in the league.
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