Heat vs. Thunder: Regardless of Outcome, Kevin Durant is the Clear MVP

By Ryan Heckman
Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Wednesday night, we’ll get to witness one of the most hyped regular season NBA matchups of 2014. The red-hot Kevin Durant and his Oklahoma City Thunder will visit LeBron James and the Miami Heat in a game where there is no shortage of story lines.

The biggest argument all season long, from my perspective, has been looking at whether Durant has overtaken James as the league’s best player — just this season. Of course James still has the edge career-wise, but in 2014 Durant has been nothing short of jaw-dropping and, at the moment, looks like a real strong MVP candidate.

Wednesday night, some are saying that it could be a statement game for James. Maybe he can turn the tables on all of those saying Durant is a lock for the MVP at this point. After all, there is plenty of season left to go and James certainly has time to climb back on top of the list.

My argument, though, is that Durant has already proven himself worthy of the MVP award. His recent streak of 30-plus point games is remarkable. Durant has scored over 40 points on five occasions in January, with a career-high 54 points coming on the 17th. This month, he’s averaged 37 points, six rebounds, six assists and 1.6 steals per game — how do you compete with that?

No matter who wins Wednesday night, Durant is still the clear MVP for this season. James could drop 60 points, but Durant’s January is still more than enough to warrant the honors.

Not to say James isn’t the best player in the game — well, actually that’s exactly what I’m saying. Durant is by far and away the best player in the game right now. He’s put the Thunder on his back without Russell Westbrook and completely torn up the NBA. I can firmly, confidently say that at the moment there is no better player in the game than Durant, and he will be taking home the MVP no matter what happens the rest of the season.

Ryan Heckman is a Senior Writer for RantSports.comFollow him on Twitter @ryanmheckman, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

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