The Los Angeles Lakers are cruising with a 4-0 record after the All-Star break, and star forward LeBron James is at the center of it all.
The 18-year veteran continues to impress with his longevity, and the last four games have exemplified that. James is averaging 25.5 points, 9.8 assists and 8.3 rebounds while shooting 55.6% from the field (15.8 attempts) and 45.8% from 3-point range (6.0 attempts). The points, assists and rebounds are all team-high numbers for the Lakers.
As Los Angeles sits in second place in the Western Conference, just 1.5 games behind the first-seed Utah Jazz, the MVP conversations are beginning to mount — and fast.
James, who has claimed four MVP titles throughout his illustrious career, could be on his way to a fifth at this rate. He explained what the award means to him as his name circulates in the debate.
“For me personally, the MVP, I try to be that every night for my ballclub,” James said. “Being available to them, and being the best player on the floor every night. To be rewarded with that award, it is something, for sure, I’m not gonna sit here and say it doesn’t mean anything to me. For me to be able to win it a few times in my career has always been special. Being in the running, hearing my name with some of the best basketball players in the league this year again, it would mean a lot.
James added how potentially winning the MVP award at 36 years old would serve as an astonishing accomplishment.
“At my age, what I’ve been doing this whole season, what I bring to the table every single night on both sides of the floor, it would be an unbelievable thing personally for me at this point in my career. So we shall see where the chips may lay.”
As James will likely remain in the MVP discourse for the rest of this season, especially considering how he’s playing in the absence of Anthony Davis, debates have emerged about the number of MVP awards James should’ve had by now.
While he thinks more MVPs should be in his trophy case, James says he doesn’t linger on those thoughts and wants to maintain this level of play.
“I should have more than four, I believe,” James said. “But I don’t and I don’t sit around thinking about it or crying about it, whatever the case may be. I just try to come in the next season and be the MVP and be talked about again.
“I bet a lot of the greats that have played this game feel like they should have more as well if you ask any one of those guys. So this is another opportunity for me to be able to be recognized as the best player for that particular season, and this season. So hopefully I can just continue to play great basketball and see what happens at the end.”
Vogel again states James is MVP of 2020-21 season
Lakers head coach Frank Vogel has long praised the play of James, and he did so again following the win over Charlotte. Vogel once again said James should be the winner of the MVP award this season.
“He’s the MVP of the league in my opinion, but thus far because of that mindset and what he’s doing for our team, he just wins the game in so many different ways. We’re the No. 1 defense in the league without Anthony Davis for most of this season largely because of what he does with his play and his quarterbacking and his voice. He has the ability to put up triple-doubles, score 30-40 points. He’s really doing it all for us.”
James hasn’t garnered the accolade since the 2012-13 season when he won it for the second-straight year. Vogel added how James deserves more recognition than he’s received since he last won the award.
“It’s the simplest way to put it. There’s been other players that have been deserving, but he’s been the best player in the league for as long as I can remember. Maybe since his second or third year in the league. It’s just one of those things that is unfortunate, it’s not right. He should get it this year. He’s doing it every night and no one is as deserving.”
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