Through 63 games so far this season, Russell Westbrook has played like a man possessed. After watching former MVP and teammate Kevin Durant bolt from OKC last summer to join the Golden State Warriors, Westbrook seems eager to prove that he never needed KD in the first place. Amazingly, Westbrook is still averaging a triple-double, with his current totals at 31.7 points per game, 10.6 rebounds, and 10.0 assists.
If he maintains those averages for the next 19 games, he’ll accomplish something rarely ever seen in NBA history. Only Oscar Robertson has managed the feat before, way back in the 1961-62 season. Even if Westbrook slips in rebounds or assists, he’s still having one of the best seasons in league history, statistically. But Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban doesn’t think he belongs in the MVP conversation.
Mark Cuban says MVP is a toss-up between James Harden and LeBron James. Where is Russell Westbrook in that mix? "He's not."
— Tim MacMahon (@espn_macmahon) March 6, 2017
When asked to clarify his opinion, Cuban apparently stated that he believes the MVP needs to come from a winning team. Even though the Thunder are above .500 (35-28) and currently in a playoff spot in the West, Cuban maintains that the MVP needs “fifty wins and a playoff series win.” Interestingly enough, those conditions would have disqualified Mavericks star Dirk Nowitzki from winning the MVP in 2007, since they lost in the first round of the playoffs.
Shortly after Cuban’s original comments were made public, he made it seem like maybe he was just trolling for the sake of trolling. In which case, great job Mark!