Jalen Ragsdale

James Harden of the Drew League.
James Harden of the Drew League. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Before the 1980-1981 season, the MVP (Most Valuable Player) was decided by the NBA players who battled and played each other every night. Now, the MVP is decided by a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters who watch every game, analyzing and critiquing the players’ nightly performances. The winner is named from his regular season performance, the importance, impact he has had on his team.

With All-Star weekend approaching, the race for MVP has become closer and more competitive in comparison to earlier in the year. In the beginning of the season, Oklahoma City Thunder guard, Russell Westbrook, seemed to have the MVP spot locked in without any competition. The Houston Rockets’ James Harden is now giving Westbrook a run for his money and being heavily considered for the MVP winner. Also in the top 3 is “the king of the 4th quarter,” Isaiah Thomas, who plays for the Boston Celtics. Following behind them is Kawhi Leonard with the San Antonio Spurs and Lebron James who plays for the Cleveland Cavaliers.

Russell Westbrook is averaging a triple double with an impressive 30.9 points, 10.2 assist, and 10.5 rebounds a game with a team record of 30-23. James Harden is averaging 28.9 points, 11.4 assist, and 8.2 rebounds a game and a team record of 38-17. Isaiah Thomas is averaging 29.9 points, 6.4 assists, and 2.7 rebounds a game with a team record of 33-18.

As of now, it seems like James Harden will win the MVP for the 2016-2017 season. Harden’s stats are stunning and his team fell in 3rd place in the Western Conference. Harden has the best team record compared to his competition, Westbrook and Thomas. Isaiah Thomas is up for second place in the MVP race and his team is second in the Eastern Conference with a team record that is only five wins behind the Rockets. Westbrook fell in third place even though he has the best individual stats. Unfortunately, his team record wasn’t that good, landing seventh place in the Western Conference.

With the second half of the NBA coming up, Isaiah Thomas, James Harden, and Russell Westbrook will continue to play, practice, and work hard every night to help their team advance to the playoffs, which is their main priority; winning the MVP will just be a bonus.