Russell Westbrook should win MVP
In 2012, Detroit Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera was named American League MVP for being the first player since Ted Williams to have a triple-crown season.
This season, Oklahoma City Thunder superstar point guard Russell Westbrook is having the basketball equivalent of the Triple Crown by averaging a triple-double throughout the season and for that, he should be named league MVP if he finishes the job.
With 35 down and six more to go, Westbrook is also at the stretch run of his quest of tying the NBA record for triple-doubles in a single season held by Hall of Famer Oscar Robinson, the NBA’s Ted Williams. His latest triple-double made NBA history by being the first to do so with perfect shooting last Wednesday in a blowout win over the Philadelphia 76ers.
“It’s amazing,” Thunder center Enes Kanter said, “especially at point guard because he is shooting two’s and three’s, going inside and outside.”
“He’s always trying to figure out what the game calls for, and he tries to go in there and do the very best job he can in leading, incorporating everybody else and finding his teammates,” Thunder coach Billy Donovan said. “He’s surveying what’s going on and what our team needs.”
Oklahoma City has the fourth best home record in the NBA. With Westbrook all alone to pursue this Triple Crown, Thunder games at the Chesapeake Energy Arena have seemed a lot more fun, especially in the fourth quarter of a tight game. This is mainly because of Westbrook, who is known for being a poor shooter from long-range, enjoying a career high in three-point shooting and playing the role of the closer, finishing off his opponent with a gladiator’s flurry.
“We have to have that killer instinct,” Westbrook said. “We have to be able to come out when you’re up 12 of 14 and be able to push it to 20-22 especially at home and to be a good team you need to be able to do this consistently.”
Westbrook and former Thunder teammate James Harden are in top contention for the MVP. One thing they share in common is the ability that makes them virtually impossible to guard. Westbrook has the athletic edge that makes him in transition a sight to behold.
“He caused all sorts of problems with him coming down in transition,” Sixers guard Nik Stauskas said, “he kind of just demands so much attention.”
“He’s going to get his,” Sixers guard T.J. McConnell said. “He averages a triple-double, for Christ’s sake, so it’s tough for us to stop him.”
The Thunder recently clinched their eighth straight winning season. The last time they had a below .500 season was their inaugural year in Oklahoma City, when Westbrook was a rookie.
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