LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers are on the brink of elimination tonight in Game 6 of the NBA Finals against the Golden State Warriors, but that hasn’t stopped many from pondering the thought of a losing player winning NBA Finals MVP.
Given the injuries to Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving, James has been forced to take over offensive duties for the Cavaliers. He is averaging 36.6 points, 12.4 rebounds and 8.8 assists per game through the first five games.
Even with those numbers, winning the MVP would not be all that special for James if it comes in a losing effort.
“I wouldn’t feel good about it at all,” James told reporters. “Because at the end of the day, I’m here to win a team prize, and that’s to win a championship, not an individual prize.”
Many believe that no matter the performance, the MVP must come from the winning team.
“For me, it’s got to be somebody from the winner,” Dirk Nowitzki said. “That’s how I always viewed the MVP, even though LeBron is playing from another planet and he’s single-handedly keeping the series close. I’ve always believe the MVP has to come from the winner.
“Steph [Curry] has played amazing the last couple of games. Even Steve Kerr said [Andre] Iguodala has been their best player in the first four games. He’s been phenomenal on both ends of the floor. So I’m sure you can find somebody from the Warriors if they pull through.”