1. Blake Griffin
Griffin has been playing out of his mind as of late, and with a less than 100 percent Chris Paul, he has clearly emerged as the best player for the Los Angeles Clippers right now. Griffin continues to dominate at his position despite being targeted by so called “NBA bullies” around the league. Seriously, whats not to like about him? Since the NBA All-Star break, he has been on a rampage and has arguably played like the best power forward in the NBA. The Clippers are now one of the best teams in the west thanks in part to Blake Griffin. The All-NBA first team caliber player deserves the nod for MVP.
2. Kevin Durant
I’m not sure if Kevin Durant is the blame for his decline in the MVP standings or if Russell Westbrook has temporarily ruined the chemistry of what was once the No. 1 team in the Western Conference. Despite the Thunder going 5-5 out of the last 10 games, Durant remains the best scorer in the league and continues to put up huge numbers as the Thunder are only a single game behind the San Antonio Spurs for the best record in the Western Conference. In the end, the MVP race will ultimately be a close contest between Durant , LeBron James, and Blake Griffin.
3. LeBron James
Since dropping 61 points against the Charlotte Bobcats earlier this month, LeBron James has experienced a scoring slump and the Miami Heat have lost four of the last five games including a loss at home to the Brooklyn Nets. On a brighter note, the Heat have a fairly easy schedule remaining in March, meaning LeBron still has a chance at winning MVP. Lets be honest, he is more than capable of carrying his team, but perhaps we won’t see him truly erupt until the beginning of the postseason.
4. Joakim Noah
In a perfect world James Harden would be No. 4 on my list, unfortunately he didn’t show up to play in a recent 111-87 blowout by the hands of Joakim Noah and the Chicago Bulls. Noah has been the recipient of MVP chants from the United Center crowd but in his modesty he will defer such an honor be reserved for the injured Derrick Rose, none the less, Noah is the heart and soul of a tough Bulls team. While his scoring numbers and offensive style of play isn’t exactly “electrifying”, Noah has emerged as the leader and ultimate motivator for his team, as a result, the Bulls are currently one of the top four teams in the Eastern Conference.
5. Paul George
The Pacers may have the best record in the Eastern Conference but they have not been playing like one of the elite teams in the league, as it appears that Paul George has offensively “cooled off” since the All-Star break. George has been nursing a sore back, which could be part of the reason the Pacers dropped four games in a row including winnable loses to the Charlotte Bobcats and Golden State Warriors. On a positive note, the Pacers have an easy schedule in March which could mean more rest for Paul George. Head coach Frank Vogel has to be careful how he manages George’s minutes, as it could cost the team crucial wins effecting their chances for the No. 1 playoffs seed in the Eastern Conference.