At this point in the NBA season everyone is usually discussing the playoffs and getting excited to see all the match ups and outcomes, however, this season has been much different.
The two things that have been talked about in the NBA as of late have been Russell Westbrook’s insanely good triple-double filled season and who the MVP will be.
Anyone with a right mind would stop and ask something along the lines of, “Shouldn’t Westbrook be the MVP since his season is constantly being talked about?”
Well surprisingly enough, sports analysts and “important” sports polls have kept James Harden in the conversation for MVP most of the season.
Now I respect Harden and think that him and the Rockets have had an impressive season. There’s no doubt that I think he showed out this season and put up great numbers. but here’s why he can’t compare to Westbrook.
The reason Westbrook has been talked about for most of the season is because he is averaging a triple double for the season with 31.8 points per game, which is the most in the league, 10.7 rebounds per game and 10.4 assists per game.
In the remaining four games, Westbrook only has to earn six more assists to clinch averaging a triple double on the season, something that hasn’t been done since the 1961-1962 season when Oscar Robertson averaged 30.8 points per game, 12.5 rebounds per game and 11.4 assists per game.
Not only is Westbrook on the verge of averaging a triple double, but he is also one away from breaking the season record of triple doubles, as he is tied at 41 with Robertson, who set the record in the same season he averaged one.
When I look at these statistics from Westbrook, I would be handing him the MVP already.
For Harden, the shooting guard is averaging 29.2 points per game, the second most in the league, 11.2 assists per game, the most in the league, and 8.1 rebounds. He has also earned 20 triple doubles over the season, contributing to the unbelievable 110 triple doubles in the NBA this season.
There is no doubt that Harden is having a great season, but Westbrook is simply having an even better season.
There has been many arguments made that Harden deserves the MVP because his team’s record is better and he has nobody on his team. However, I completely disagree with this argument.
Harden has Eric Gordon who is behind him at shooting guard and does a fine job filling in his time on the bench. Gordon has averaged 16.3 points per game, being the second most on the team, as well as 2.6 rebounds and assists per game.
Westbrook has not had a solid player behind him this season with Norris Cole and Semaj Christon being the backup point guards both averaging under three points per game.
According to NBA.com, The Thunder’s plus/minus with Westbrook on the floor is +3.2, but with him off the court it’s -9.8 while the Rockets plus/minus is +6.4 with Harden on the court and +4.5 with him off. This shows that Westbrook is practically carrying the team.
While Harden has had an excellent season, he should have saved it for another year because Westbrook has outplayed him with an even more insane season.