Once again it seems like I am being forced to “Witness” why LeBron James is not the kind of player carries his team to a title. While on ESPN this morning, Steven A. Smith made it clear his sources (remember that sources is another name for someone that thinks they know something, but usually are wrong as evidence by anything Chris Broussard has ever reported) are saying that one of the reasons Dwayne Wade is resting is because the team wants to enhance LeBron’s odds of winning the NBA MVP award by giving him a bigger push with Wade out of the lineup. The fact that this is even a rumor that I can believe speaks volumes about James as a player and also why the MVP should not be his.
I will not even go down the route that he has anything to do with Wade resting directly. Steven A. Smith made it clear that it was Pat Riley behind this move. This tells me that Riley thinks that LeBron needs a mental boost and his ego stroked. The fact that the Heat feel that he needs this mental boost of winning an MVP trophy tells me that he is not a guy a team should be looking for in the fourth quarter of games.
True greats and real MVPs do not need this mental boost. They are already confident enough to not think, but know that they are going to carve your heart out and hand it to you on a platter. True greats know that they are going to beat you by taking control of the game. Guys like Boston Celtics great Larry Bird in his prime no other man say Magic Johnson could touch him on the court. His confidence was supreme and that is the reason he was so special. I do not believe any person on the planet believes that Red Auerbach ever thought of benching Robert Parrish or Kevin McHale to help him get that mental edge of an MVP award.
The other fact is true greats could care less about that MVP trophy. They wanted to win the NBA title like they needed to breathe air. Larry Bird and Magic Johnson made it clear the MVP was not the trophy that meant they were the best. The Larry O’Brien trophy was the only true measure of who the best was. Michael Jordan was the same way. I recall when he was asked one time if he was insulted that Charles Barkley had won the MVP trophy over him one year, he calmly replied that was not the trophy that he was eyeing or cared about. The fact that LeBron cares that much that his team president even thinks about enhancing his shot at it is very damning.
Heck, even last season Derrick Rose lit up the world on his way to an MVP title and the only award on his mind that mattered was an NBA title. LeBron James is having a nice year filling up a stat sheet. However, that does not make him the best. As far as MVP award goes there are guys like Tony Parker in San Antonio and Kevin Durrant in OKC that are having great years that are winning games for their teams in the fourth quarter instead of filling a stat sheet. Those guys also are only talking about one piece of hardware that truly makes you the best and that is an NBA title. This is why one of them is more likely to be walking away with that honor. I just hope the MVP voters take this into consideration and LeBron loses out on this one like he should.