NBA MVP Watch: Week 5
With the 2022 NBA season well under way now it's time to start speculating on which top player will win the coveted most valuable player trophy.
Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks
The offensive phenom Luka Docic is no stranger to the MVP chatter. But this year may be the one that he brings the trophy home.
Doncic is lighting up the scoreboard this year, averaging 34.3 points per game. In a recent game against the Portland Trail Blazers, Doncic was executing on all levels with a 42 point triple-double.
However, Doncic’s overall shooting percentages are down this year. He is currently making three pointers at a 29% clip which is down from 35% last season. But his overall offensive output is hard to argue against.
Donic is the reason that the Dallas Mavericks are the seventh seed in the western conference. Without Doncic, one could argue that the Mavericks would be in the running for the number one overall pick in the draft.
Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics
Jayson Tatum has continued his dominance from the Celtics’ title run last year. Boston sits atop of the Eastern Conference largely due to the play of Tatum. He’s averaging 30.3 points per game and is making nearly half the shots that he puts up.
Tatum’s stats may not be as eye popping as the other MVP hopefuls, but all he has done is win as the Celtics are currently on a nine game winning streak.
During this streak, the team has only scored under 120 points twice. Tatum and Jaylen Brown continue to be one of the best duos in the NBA. If Tatum were to win the award over someone such as Doncic he will need to find his teammates more often for assists.
Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks
The two time MVP is again performing at an elite level. “The Greek Freak” has a shooting percentage above 50% for the eighth consecutive season so far and is averaging just below thirty points per game while averaging a double-double with rebounds.
It's hard to make an argument against Antetokounmpo as he has been the most dominant player in the league for years now. But his struggles from the arch and free throw line have become increasingly worrisome.
Antetokounmpo is shooting 13% from three and 57% from the free throw line in his last 10 games. If he continues to struggle in these areas, it’lll be hard for him to win the award while he hurts his team offensively.
Joel Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers
Philadelphia’s seven footer has been the league MVP for some voters for the past two years but has yet to win the award. Joel Embiid is currently carrying a very injured 76ers team with his unstoppable offensive force.
Embiid is leading Philadelphia in points (32.3), assists (4.6), and rebounds (10.1).
Early on in the season, Embiid’s teammate James Harden was building an early case for MVP. But since then, Harden and rising star Tyrese Maxey have suffered injuries leaving Embiid to be the main focal point of the offense.
What will help Embiid win this award is the periodical game where he explodes and is literally unstoppable. Most recently, this came to be against the Utah Jazz, where he accumulated a crazy statline of 59 points, 11 rebounds, eight assists and seven blocks - the only such stat line to be recorded in NBA history.
Embiid has almost won this award twice now, is the third time the charm?
Patrick McCaw is a third-year broadcast journalism major. To contact him, please email email@example.com.
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