Could Kobe still win MVP? For the better part of the evening, Kobe Bryant had bided his time, surveying the Houston Rockets’ defense for cracks, holstering his own shot as the confidence within his teammates grew. Finally, the moment called for him.

Shane Battier buried a 3-pointer to press the Rockets closer to the Los Angeles Lakers. Bryant took the ball on the left wing, measured the distance between him and Battier, and let fly with his 25-foot answer. Twenty-eight seconds later, Bryant skirted off a pick and quickly fired another 3-pointer over the head of Battier.

This time, Bryant paused to watch the shot slide through the net, holding his right hand aloft as he admired his work. The Rockets’ shoulders slumped, but Bryant’s daggers pierced far deeper than the opposing bench. Some two hours earlier, LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers had jetted out of Orlando on the heels of a 29-point loss that James called “embarrassing.” By the time the Cavs touched down in Cleveland, they knew this much:

Kobe isn’t ready to concede the MVP race – or home-court advantage – to LeBron just yet.

Only three days earlier, the Cavs seemed to have all but locked up home court through the NBA Finals after the Lakers followed a loss in Atlanta with another in Charlotte. But that was before the Washington Wizards delivered one of the season’s biggest upsets by beating Cleveland. The Cavs were further humbled by the Magic, trailing by as many as 41 points.


Home court is up for grabs. The MVP award might be as well….

If nothing else, Bryant’s performance against the Rockets should now make voters hold onto their ballots until the final day of the regular season. The Lakers also beat the Cavs in both of their meetings, a talking point that figures to occupy the top line of Bryant’s résumé should the teams finish the season with the same record….

Continue reading ‘Kobe shows MVP race far from over’

  • purplegoldvein

    good article. i too thought the mvp race was over, but with these two loses by the cavs its up for grabs again. i think the lakers are in good shape should they win out, since the cavs still have to play the spurs and celtics one more time. we’ll see what happens. but with lebron being the sports medias favorite child i think it will be hard regardless for kobe to win the mvp. i just hope he wins the finals mvp.

  • as1084

    it doesnt matter…Lebron is going to get it because he the NBAs golden child…. lebron won it before the season even started! oh well….a ring is better than any mvp award.

  • as1084

    do u guys notice that this article came from Yahoo Sports. ESPN would never write an article like this cause they are all over lebron’s n*ts. I have more respect for Yahoo than ESPN cause Yahoo Sports arent biased. they tell it like it is!

  • Lakers 24 7

    Cavs still play the Spurs and Celtics at home, and Philly and Indiana on the road, which could result in some more upsets.

  • imfasterthanur

    I totally agree with the article, I won’t lie, I kind of gave up on Home court advantage/MVP hopes a few days ago — but now it’s a battle.

    If the season ended today I think Lebron would still deserve the MVP award, but if the Cavs drop there games against the Spurs and Celtics, I honestly feel that Kobe should receive the award automatically.

    Lebrons Cav’s are 2-6 against powerhouse teams (Celtics, Lakers, Spurs, Magic, etc) and the blow out in Orlando shows that he is only dominating sub-par teams. Although Kobe’s stats aren’t as impressive as James’, he IS the most valuable player against the toughest competition the NBA has to offer.

    In my opinion, Kobe is MVP until Lebron TAKES it away.

  • Makaveli3

    I think kobe deserves it more since they beat all the top 3 teams with no problem.

  • mr.laker19

    Since the media hates kobe and loves Lebron, Kobe has to be CLEARLY the number one choice. If not, Lebron will win regardless. It cant be close. Kobe deserves it, Lebron has the makings of a choke artist written all over him.

  • BYnuMItefan101

    It’s not over, till it’s over

  • lakerschamps09

    HCA aint over rite….. but mvp the league had that crap locked up for bron since season started…. but i hope kobe can get it:))))
    if we get HCA kobe must get it

  • Juilliards Laker Man

    The race is over.if it’s done correctly this year it’s Kobe Bryant.
    The ultimate Goal and purpose of the season is to prepare your team to be a championship team. This means that The Most Valuable player in the league is the guy who has his team as the most dominant team and favorites to win the Championships because of what he did in the season to make his team the team they are.
    The Cavs:One man can’t get it done when there are real teams in the league.the spurs showed this to the cavs a few years ago in the finals. The lakers showed the cavs this year already. Lebron can win a lot of games bc he is a dominant player like MJ and Kobe, but when there are real true teams out there, you are only going to beat them if you make sure your team is doing everything and not just relying on you.
    The Lakers: This is a team run by Kobe Bryant who has done all he had to do this season to have his team sweeping the top teams in the league and winning all the big games. This is a guy who makes sure the box score is full all over by the whole team. Kobe Bryant is hands down MVP when this award is being given out correctly.
    He’s earned it..What’s more Valuable going into the Finals to win a championship, which is the ultimate goal of the game?…Having Lebron, who’s team relies on him, but any one guy can be stopped by a full team of true players who know how to play the game right or having Kobe Bryant who understands this and has developed a young team into the most powerful weapons who are ready for any battle.
    Kobe Bryant is much more of a valuable player this season because of what he has done this season. He has his team as the favorites..the most valuable player is the one you need to win that championship.. this year it’s Kobe Bryant

  • Heron

    LeBron deserves it, sorry guys. If you argue that the Lakers have a better record against the top teams, what about their record against the crap teams? LeBron’s–for the most part–been more efficient against good and BAD teams.

  • Juilliards Laker Man

    A lot of guys have done impressive things throughout the season, but what Lebron has done does not at all give anyone any reason to say that he deserves it when you look at the big picture. This is the MVP award not those most stats awards. The Most Valuable Player in the league is the player that has done the most impressive job in proving that his team is the most dominant team in the league and is ready to win the Championship. Having the stats he has really does nothing when you are trying to win a championship and there are bigger fish in the sea..having the home record he has doesn’t mean all that much when you have been swept by the Lakers and there’s a guy on the Lakers who has led his team to winning all the major games which count..BAD Teams don’t count when the goal is to win the championship.Kobe has prepared his team to do so this year and that’s the most valuable player in the league bc you want that championship. Lebron hasn’t prepared his team to go to battle against a true team..the spurs gave it to him and the Lakers will have no problem handling one guy..they are a true team because of Kobe Bryants Leadership in 09 to be world champions..that’s the most valuable player..Kobe could have all the numbers he wants..that’s not that hard when you are at that level like he and lebron is at..Kobe understands that, but knows how to win Championships in the NBA..more valuable

  • Eidraq

    [Comment ID #66879 Will Be Quoted Here]

    you can subtract good teams from you’re statement…

  • imfasterthanur

    [Comment ID #66879 Will Be Quoted Here]

    Since when does efficiency against good teams equate to losses?

  • Heron

    I see what you all are saying, but had Kobe not revert back to chucking Kobe against those lesser teams we would’ve won more games. Most games it’s close in the fourth, because Kobe tries to go it alone too many times. I can’t coun’t how many teams come back from huge deficits against us, because Kobe tries to be the hero when there’s no need. Everything should be ran through the post in the triangle offense (i.e. Pau).

    I’m also smart enough to see the east-coast biased LeSPN give to James and am sick of it, but at the end of the day guys… which team has the better record without their respective superstars? I say the Lakers are still a top 3 team in the West.

  • Juilliards Laker Man

    MVP is not to be decided by which team has the better record without their respective superstar. The ultimate goal is to win the championship and you are not the most valuable player if you are the only guy feeling the stat sheet. that strategy is not the most dominant way to play when there’s real teams out there in the league. The Spurs, back when they were on top, showed this to Lebron in the finals and he’s still playing with the same strategy that proved to not be most dominant. It works against a lot of teams but not true basketball teams playing the game at its best. Give him some other kind of award for his stats but that’s why there aren’t many other awards around bc they don’t mean much in the game of basketball. that strategy is not dominant when you face a real team. throughout the season the MVP does things to prepare his team to playing all around team ball and having his weapons ready for any challenge they may face in the finals. Kobe giving the ball to Ariza in San Antonio with Kobe being Red Hot with about 10 seconds to go..givn Ariza that experience so he’s ready for the big time games when it really counts is what MVP do. making sure guys grab rebounds and making sure that he’s not the only guy feeling the stat sheet is what MVP’s do. Look at MJ, couldn’t get it done against the Pistons until he learned to trust his team and made sure they played the most dominant style of basketball. One man can’t get it done when there’s a True team out there. In some seasons, yes they can, but not often.
    when you are looking at the big picture and how much better kobe has his team prepared for the big moments in the finals…the ultimate goal to be the Champs..who’s playing a more valuable style of ball?
    Kobes team came in as young guys and he’s been developing babies into the weapons they are today. Most Valuable player is the player who has his TEAM as the most dominant team favored to win it all… Kobe has done a lot in developing the guys around him to be able to feel the box score like they do today. win games, loose games,like Kobe said ” Home court doesn’t matter” this doesn’t matter cuz the better team is going to win. He wants his team as the best team in the League and he has done so. Lakers have beat the big dogs and basically the MVP is the player who is doing what really matters..Lakers are on track to winning the Championship this year “the ultimate goal” Most Valuable Player guides his team in the season

  • Ethdude

    If we don’t win a title I’m blaming all this bull.

  • Sam


    If your argument is that Lebron is all stats, and doesn’t make his team better like Kobe, I’d suggest you pick up a roster. Career years for Varejao, Mo, Delonte, and pretty damn close from Z. If anything, the fact the Cavs are this much better with simply Mo and West added to the same group of scrubs that San Antonio swept in the finals is amazing. Now they’re all of a sudden a “deep team”? I don’t buy it. We have much more talent. They just play with more urgency in the regular season cause they’re not accustomed to the fact that regular season success does not dictate postseason success.

    I’m for Kobe, but I’m not dumb enough to argue that Lebron hasn’t made the Cavs and that cast of role guys way better and more confident. I mean you’re arguing that Kobe should be praised for trusting Ariza with a last shot in San Antonio, when we killed Lebron for giving the ball up in the playoffs to a wide open Donyell Marshall. It’s a total reversal. I’m not trying to call you a hypocrit, as I didn’t see your stance then, but don’t you read what you wrote and sense the irony that last year we all discounted the Cavs sweeping the Lakers and this year, we’re hanging our “Kobe for MVP” hopes on those games and on records vs. Orlando, Boston, Cavs/Lakers, and Spurs? It’s grabbing at straws. I would expect Lebron wins it with as large a margin as Kobe won it last year, and rightfully so.

    Common sense would tell you that Mo Williams isn’t accounting for almost 20 more wins for that squad. Lebron has raised his game and every tenet we argued for Kobe vs. Nash (better numbers, weaker cast, better d) is now in Lebron’s favor. In addition the records (while I think we will get home court now) will be a wash. It’s his year for an individual trophy. Congrats. He’s earned it.

    It’s our year for a title. We have MUCH more talent. I don’t care what the team records say.

  • Juilliards Laker Man

    My argument is not at all that Lebron is all stats and doesn’t make his team better. That would be pretty dumb sam. Sorry, if that’s how it came across. My argument is actually pretty black and white. My argument is that the MVP is the guy who has his team looking like the soon to be Champions coming June because of what he did in the season. To me, Kobe has his team right on track after the Lakers accomplishments this season. I’m looking at this season, right here and right now to determine who’s the MVP of 08/09 Season.
    To me, Kobe has done a better job in preparing his team to be the more dominant team who’s ready for any challenge in the finals. Lebron is an unselfish person, has won many games this season, but to me that doesn’t mean anything because the goal is to win the Championship and I don’t believe the Cavs stlyle of play is championship worthy this year because of the teams that are out there. I believe that Lebron has made the guys around him MUCH better players, he is a great leader, but to me his style of play with this team is not the most valuable style in the league. Dominant players like him find ways to win many games, Kobe did it in the past, MJ did it too, but carrying teams on your shoulders usually don’t get you the ring (it can for sure) when they’re teams playing real team ball. MJ found that out and so did Kobe, quite a few times. I believe there’s other things Lebron could of and prob should of done in this season to have his weapons as potent as Kobe has his right now. I don’t believe Lebrons style of ball is going to win a series against a group of guys who all commit to being the best at their position on the floor. When you look at the Lakers box scores throughout the season you will see some pretty impressive consistant box scores full of great numbers all over the place. These are stats from guys who came in as babies, but Kobes determination and experience have led him to committing to making sure his players are putting up Dominant numbers in their positions on the floor… Kobe could easily have the most points in the lead by far. He could commit to grabbing the most rebounds on the court..welL I mean Kobe can make his stats look a whole lot better and prob have a very similar record this year, but that’s not an all around player. An all around player is the player Kobe has been this season, making sure his team is potent in all areas. That’s doing everything. Kobe could have it the other way around like he has in the past, but instead has turned some young guys into a squad that knows they have to feel those stats if they want to be the best prepared to get a ring.
    Lebron is a dominant player, like Kobe and MJ. Super stars like these have found ways to carry their teams far. Two of them figured out how to win Championships and that’s when the box score was being filled up by everyone.
    My example of Ariza is not that Kobe should be praised for that..haha. Lebron always passes out that’s pretty much how they run their offense. Their guys are use to him passing out. I’m not going to go crazy because of that.. This year, I’m looking at the BIG picture. What matters right now Sam.
    If the Cavs and Lakers went into the finals this year.. whos work in the season seems to be more valuable in having the more dominant team. What I’m arguing is that stats, most games won, most games lost, what ever, it don’t matter. Which team do you think is going to win in the Finals because of the work of their super star throughout the season. Kobe and Lebron had all season to prepare his team for this moment in the Finals. Who has the most dominant style of play in a series in the finals? If you had the choice to pick, which team you would want to be on begining in the finals and you can walk away with a ring.. which team looks ready for a real battle.
    Kobe has looked at the big picture all season.
    None of the Lakers rely on him to grab the rebounds, pass out the assist in a triangle offense, no one on the team relies on him game after game to show up for them to win. Kobe wants a Championship team. He can grab all the rebounds he wants and score all he wants if he wanted to..he could get all the steels and blocks too.. After being a true all around player this year, he has his team Ready. He has everyone stepping up. Even after all his work in making the guys around him being the best they can be, the Lakers still have the most potent cold blooded force in the league. Kobe’s strategy of play is far more dominant in a team game this year.
    Looking at the big picture of winning the NBA Championship, (what the guys work for all year to do) nearing the end of this season, I can’t say that Lebron is the most Valuable player bc I don’t think he has his team ready to win a championship this season. I don’t think he has guys ready to step up when a true team figures out how to stop him. I don’t think the Cavs are the most dominant team in the league. I think there’s another team out there being led by Kobe Bryant and I believe his strategies this year are more valuable in getting that championship this year.
    I’d want to be on the Lakers going into the finals because I feel their leader has done everything he needed to do to get that ring this year and that’s more valuable.