Even though Kawhi Leonard deservedly won the Finals MVP award, truth be told he might not have been the most important Spur in the postseason.
In The Book Of Basketball, Bill Simmons talks about his Playoff MVP award. The premise is that even though player X was spectacular in the Finals, there may have been a more important player in the rest of the playoffs who allowed the team to make the Finals in the first place. For example, Simmons suggested that in 2005, Tony Parker was only the most valuable player in the last series, but that the work Tim Duncan had done in the rest of the playoffs was much greater and more important to the team winning the title. Therefore, he awarded his “Playoffs MVP” award to Tim Duncan instead.
This is our chance to recognise a Spur for his accomplishments throughout the playoffs as a whole. We might not have an official NBA award for this, nor do we have Bill Russell to hand out the trophy, but here at AirAlamo, we like to reward achievement with articles. So lets take a look at top 5 players in order of who should have won the 2014 NBA Playoffs MVP for San Antonio.
After setting an NBA Finals record for most threes made last year, how did IcyHot re-up this year? By shooting over 47% from three during the whole playoffs, despite taking the second most threes (4.4/game) on the team. His +/- was good for fourth on the Spurs in the playoffs, beating out Tony Parker, and playoffs darling Boris Diaw.
Not only did he shoot well, but he was very efficient with the ball. Despite playing 23 minutes/game , he turned the ball over less than once per game. He actually racked up more steals than turnovers throughout the playoffs, meaning he got the ball back more often than he lost it: a ratio only matched by Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard.
Danny also played excellent defense in the OKC series, and switching him between Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant was the key tactical switch that swung the series in the Spurs’ favour.