The race for MVP | Scorers are devastating

For over a decade, Basket USA has been offering it to you Top 5 candidates for the “Most Valuable Player” trophy (MVP)”. For our second race, we decided to focus on the crazy scoring performances of NBA forwards.

Currently, after three weeks of competition, there are at least seven players (!) who have at least 30 points on average: Luka Doncic (36.0), Stephen Curry (32.6), Giannis Antetokounmpo (31.8), Jayson Tatum (31.2), Donovan Mitchell (31.2), Kevin Durant (31.0) and finally Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (30.8).

If each of them maintains that pace offensively, or if more are added to this list, it will be the first time in history that so many players have scored more than 30 points per game in a season. So far, the record all the time exercise date in 1961/62, when they were six who averaged at least 30 points: Wilt Chamberlain (50.4), Elgin Baylor (38.3), Walt Bellamy (31.6), Bob Pettit (31.1), Oscar Robertson (30.8 ) and finally Jerry West (30.8).

Suffice it to say that scorers have been talking about powder, and not just a little, since the recovery. Because, on a case-by-case basis, there are also some of them that have achieved a historic start and above all show no signs of slowing down…

Luka Doncic in the footsteps of Wilt Chamberlain

This is particularly the case of Luka Doncic, left on “Chamberlesque” bases. In nine games, he never actually broke 30 points, his “lowest” total was 31 points! Hence the “Chamberlesque” basics, as the streak of nine straight outings above 30 points to start a season has not been seen since Wilt Chamberlain’s record in 1962/63: 23 in a row game 30 points or more to start the exercise!

In addition, if he continues his momentum, the Slovenian Mavericks could become the fourth player in history to complete a campaign with at least 35 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists on average. Wilt Chamberlain (1963/64), Michael Jordan (1987/88) and James Harden (2018/19) join this ultra-closed circle…

But Luka Doncic isn’t the only one hitting so far. For example, despite their mixed collective results, Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant it seems on their part they can include the Top 3 oldest players to finish a season with at least 30 points per game. At the age of 34 both, they have no possibility to reach the 37 years of LeBron James (2021/22), but they can already do better than the 32 years of Michael Jordan (1995/96) and… Curry Himself (2020/21).

Moreover, thanks to their insane shooting efficiency (the famous ” true shooting percentage ”, or TS%), the Warriors point guard (68.5 TS%) and the Nets winger (64.1 TS%) were even worse than what is often considered the best campaign of their careers: 2015/16 for to Stephen Curry and 2013 /14 for Kevin Durant. Where respectively they shoot 30.1 points and 32.0 points per game, with ” true shooting percentage » of 66.9% for Curry and 63.5% for Durant…

Moreover, not content with showing at this moment the highest average of his career and being better than ever, Stephen Curry is on the way to sign a new exercise in the club of the address ” 50/40/90″ (50% shooting , 40% 3-point and 90% throwing) and do it by scoring more than 30 points per game. That’s it!

Donovan Mitchell’s start with a bang

How can we not also mention the beginning of the cannon of Jayson Tatum and Donovan Mitchell ? In the middle of their sixth year in the league, the two 2017 Draft picks are rare in Boston and Cleveland, to the point where they’re serious. underdogs for the MVP title.

On the one hand, the Celtics winger is currently breaking the record for the highest scoring average by a Celtics player, held by Larry Bird (29.9) since 1987/88. Without surprise, Therefore, “Taco Jay” has the most points (312) in a C’s jersey after ten games, ahead of Sam Jones (295 in 1965/66) and John Havlicek (281 in 1970/71).

On the other hand, the Cavs guard is off to a dream start in Ohio, scoring at least 281 points in nine games. So only Wilt Chamberlain scored more points than “Spida” in its first nine outings in its new colors : 345, in 1959/60 (his rookie year…)!

Finally, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander also had the best point average of their careers. If he maintains his stats of 30+ points, 10+ rebounds and 5+ assists, the The “Greek Freak” would become the sixth player in history, and only the second since the ABA/NBA merger, to post such numbers in a season. As for “SGA”, he will solidify his status as the third best player in the Thunder era, behind Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, the only two players to exceed 30 points per game in a single campaign…

While it is obviously not guaranteed that the various players previously named will continue at the same pace in attack, throughout this financial year of 2022/23, the fact remains that this one has started in historical scoring bases. It’s so historic that they could, for example, allow Giannis Antetokounmpo, Luka Doncic, Donovan Mitchell or Jayson Tatum to succeed Nikola Jokicin MVP condition…

Race to the MVP 2023: our Top 5

1 – Giannis Antetokounmpo (Bucks)
Assessment: 9 wins, 1 loss – 1st in the East.
Matches: 9 are disputed out of 10 possible.
Statistics: 31.8 pts, 12.2 reb, 5.3 pds, 1.1 int, 1.4 ctr and 3.3 pdb in 33 min.
Percentages: 54% in shots, 27% in 3-pts and 65% in throws.

2 – Luka Doncic (Mavericks)
Assessment: 6 wins, 3 losses – 5th in the West.
Matches: 9 are disputed out of 9 possible.
Statistics: 36.0 pts, 8.4 reb, 8.3 pds, 1.9 int, 0.6 ctr and 3.6 pdb in 37 min.
Percentages: 52% in shots, 30% in 3-pts and 78% in throws.

3 – Donovan Mitchell (Riders)
Assessment: 8 wins, 2 losses – 2nd in the East.
Matches: 9 are disputed out of 10 possible.
Statistics: 31.2 pts, 4.1 reb, 6.0 pds, 1.3 int, 0.7 ctr and 3.4 pdb in 39 min.
Percentages: 51% shooting, 45% 3-pt and 86% throwing.

4 – Jayson Tatum (Celtics)
Assessment: 7 wins, 3 losses – 3rd in the East.
Matches: 10 debatable out of 10 possible.
Statistics: 31.2 pts, 7.5 reb, 4.0 pds, 0.8 int, 1.5 ctr and 2.7 pdb in 38 min.
Percentages: 50% shooting, 37% 3-pt and 88% shooting.

5 – Nikola Jokic (Nuggets)
Assessment: 7 wins, 3 losses – 4th in the West.
Matches: 10 debatable out of 10 possible.
Statistics: 20.9 pts, 10.5 reb, 9.3 pds, 1.4 int, 0.7 ctr and 3.6 pdb in 33 min.
Percentages: 61% shooting, 24% 3-point and 88% throwing.

Mentions : Devin Booker (Suns), Pascal Siakam (Raptors), Ja Morant (Grizzlies), Trae Young and Dejounte Murray (Hawks), Damian Lillard (Blazers), Lauri Markkanen (Jazz), Paul George (Clippers)…

True shooting percentage (TS%) : this equation is used to calculate the overall address of a player, or a team, taking into account 2-pt shots, 3-pt shots and free throws. The calculation formula is as follows: TS% = (points obtained / 2 * [tirs tentés + 0.44 * {lancers-francs tentés}]) * 100.

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