While Tony Parker played his best collective basketball of his career last season — his assist percentage was a new career-high and his PER (22.0) was his second highest total — it still wasn’t nearly enough to topple the indomitable LeBron James.
James was simply on another ethereal level — a level basketball players rarely experience. His acuity was at an all-time high and, most importantly, that acuity remained sustainable for the duration of a grueling season that saw James take considerable punishment defensively.
It was a historic season and anything Parker accomplishes will likely be unable to rival James’ last season. But Chris Broussard believes Parker will still challenge James for the coveted MVP this year (Insider.)
“Parker was a legitimate candidate last season, even though most people never think of him as an MVP. Guess what? Most people don’t think of him as a Hall of Famer either, but he will be.
If Parker does what he did last season, that could be enough to get him the award. If voters don’t want to give the award to James and the Spurs finish with a better record than the Thunder out West, should Parker be denied?
After all, with Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili in the twilight of their careers, Parker doesn’t have teammates like Russell Westbrook, Blake Griffin, Gasol or Dwyane Wade helping him out. Don’t get me wrong, Duncan and Ginobili are still very good, but if the Spurs run to the league’s best mark again, Parker has to be given the lion’s share of the credit — and serious consideration for MVP.”
There are certainly more viable MVP options but as the Spurs reliance on Tim Duncan and Manu Ginobili wanes, Parker’s role increases exponentially. If that’s the case, there have been worse candidates.
So what do you think Spurs fans? Do you think Parker has an outside shot at the MVP award?