Why is Manu Ginobili in MVP talks?
Since we are still dealing with winter, I have a bone to pick with Ginobili! Charles Barkley has forever ingrained that in my mind. Ginobili! Yeah I know it’s old, but the meme works just like “Dental plan! Lisa needs braces. Dental plan!” Ginobili! is linked with Debra Granik’s Winter’s Bone. Why is he an MVP candidate? Themes involved with the question deals with gossip, truth, and self-sufficiency. Let’s explore this because I cannot get my mind wrapped around the idea. Ginobili?
I completely wrote off the San Antonio Spurs before the year started. True story, bro. They’re looking old. The basketball Gods came down and proved me wrong as usual with them almost on pace to win 70 games. The team is as good as they ever were. The major reason for that is Manu Ginobili! His game entered a different level becoming the talk around San Antonio instead of Tim Duncan. The talk hasn’t stopped. Rest assured he didn’t drop off the top 10 on my list. The League MVP Criteria will explain why.
A) The Numbers – 49 games played, MPG 31.6, FG 0.431, 3PT 0.365, FT 0.875, STL 1.8, BLK 0.4, REB 3.9 AST 4.9, PTS 18.7, PER 22.7
His statistics say solid all star. There’s nothing extraordinary about them. They do not scream MVP worthy compared to the other candidates. The numbers are not bad. They are just not strong.
B) Team record – 41-8. Currently number one in the NBA.
This is the big one. This is what makes Ginobili linger. The number one team looks weird without an MVP candidate. Usually that’s Tim Duncan, but he regressed so much and looks awful statistically in many games. Tony Parker is outmatched by Derrick Rose, Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Rondo, Russell Westbrook and Steve Nash in the media’s perception. Therefore he is neglected. 17.3 points and 6.7 assists are not sexy enough for anyone following the best players, which means that the absolute best statistical player from the NBA’s best team is Manu.
C) Impact – Ginobili is taking over games. He gets clutch baskets and game winning shots. He’s the man. Tim Duncan and Tony Parker have taken back seats. He has been doing it even bigger than Balki from Perfect Strangers. That’s the truth. There is no gossip. Manu has a knack of getting these tough buckets time and time again. I don’t blame you for asking "What the hell?"
Ginobili has been super that the Spurs are the most consistent team in the fourth quarter. He rarely makes mistakes during that span. If the Spurs are leading after the third quarter, the opposing team is dead because San Antonio has a league leading 96% win rate. Now, you have to watch the bloody games to see this. Another reason why I chose the Oscar nominated Winter’s Bone for Manu’s imagery is because San Antonio has such a great win record, but not an outrageous statistical player out of the bunch. You look at his name and wonder “what the eff is he doing there?” Same thing with Winter’s Bone.
Conclusion: 6% chance of getting MVP. He is not getting the award at season’s end. If the race ended today, he still wouldn’t get anything. But props to Manu for being mentioned.