Every week a gang of NBA bloggers/writers get together and provide their NBA Most Valuable Player and Rookie of the Year rankings. This week look out for Upside and Motor
‘s orchestration of all of these opinions into one finely concatenated symphony of opinion. In the meantime, here are the A Stern Warning
1. LeBron James — The irresistible force. It’s not even necessary to talk numbers — this guy is flat-out a one man wrecking crew. Take him out of Cleveland and you have the Oklahoma City Thunder… and PJ Carlesimo can tell you what that means.
2. Kobe Bryant — I admit it, I’m a massive Kobe hater, well I was, until this season. He’s proving that you do need K-O-B-E to spell “the LaKers will prObably BE champions in ’09”
3. Dwight Howard — He’s neither man nor beast. He’s some form of monster the league has not seen since another behemoth donned the Magic blue and stars. His numbers are scary and he’s willing the Magic to a dominant position in the LEast.
4. Chris Paul — This firebug has dropped back in these rankings not due to lack of numbers, but due to the lack of success of the Hornets. They just haven’t sold me yet… not as much as I expected. I wouldn’t misunderestimate his chances of being at the top of the pile by April though.
5. Brandon Roy — Alright, enough of this “rising star” business. He’s the deadset early re-arrival of Haley’s Comet. The Blazers are knocking down doors and taking names and Roy is the stable, reliable leader of the militia. It’s time to recognize, peoples.
6. Devin Harris — Who? What? Yes. That guy that the Mavs traded for Jason Kidd has been amazing so far for the Nets. Shaking off injury, he had joined Vinsanity in pushing the swamp-dwellers to a record few would have predicted. Happy with that trade, Cuban?
7. Chris Bosh — Taking advantage of a nice tailwind on the way downhill from Beijing, Bosh has been quietly spectacular up north. Bizarre fact: he is shooting exactly 53.9% both at home (8 games) and on the road (8 games) this season.
8. Dwyane Wade — Has anyone played better on a losing team this season? In fact, has anyone played better, full stop? Perhaps only LeBron can lay claim to that. However, the Heat’s lack of team success severely degrades any chance of MVP for this lone gun in Miami. Shawn Marion — is anybody home??
9. Amaré Stoudemire — Over the course of his career, he has a tendency for quiet Octobers and Novembers, followed by a massive surge. Given how he started the season (with a 49 point game), look out for him to move on up this list in the coming months.
10. Tim Duncan — It’s hard to believe that some of his numbers are even down on last season, but somehow T-Robot managed to drag the Spurs to respectability in sans-Tony-Manu era. It’s been said over and over, but the lack of respect afforded to this man is despicable.
1. Derrick Rose — There must be people offering money to Paul Allen for information, as the Blazers have been the only team to find a way to restrict this rookie to single digit scoring this season. Playing the hardest position in the league, he’s by far the Bulls’ best player.
2. OJ Mayo — A born scorer. This was the first week I actually had to think hard about whether Mayo had surpassed Rose. The kid is 12th in the L in scoring.
3. Marc Gasol — Solid fundamentals and thus a solid career are ahead for this wild Spaniard. One day people will forget that Kwame Brown was involved in the trade for Marc’s older brother.
4. Michael Beasley — He’s a definite NBA player. At the moment he won’t be pushing Rose or Mayo for the top dog title, but he’ll be around for a long time.
5. DJ Augustin — Playing the point for the toughest coach possible as a rookie, DJ is doing just fine.
In addition to these rankings, you can check out the NBA Blogger Power Rankings, listing the current “hot-or-not-ness” of every NBA team, over at Empty The Bench
As always, feel free to agree, disagree or get entirely objectionable about the above.