I bet watching the Portland Trail Blazers wasn’t a top priority of yours when looking ahead to the NBA season. I bet the state of Oregon fell right off your map and sunk into the Pacific Ocean. That’s because nothing matters in the NBA unless it involves a big stage and bright lights.
LaMarcus Aldridge. I bet his name didn’t cross your mind in your preseason debate of who would win MVP. His name may be tossed around at the end of this year, but nothing more than that. His name doesn’t carry a hundredth of the weight LeBron James’ name does.
The power of a name just isn’t fair sometimes. Let’s, just for the time being, forget any player had a real name. Let’s call LeBron James “Player X.” We’ll say Kevin Durant is “Player D.” LaMarcus Aldridge, just think of him as “Player Z.”
There we go. That should solve the problem of names holding so much power. Of course not. That’s just silly. There’s been far too much relentless hype and bickering about the superstars of this era. I’ve grown sick and tired of the NBA being all about a select few superstars.
However, I did just come across something that was music to my ears. In the Moda Center on Wednesday night, LaMarcus Aldridge was icing the game with two free throws. I heard this chant, and yes, I could believe my ears. That’s because I understand how much passion hometown fans have for their team.
“MVP, MVP, MVP, MVP, MVP!”
Don’t take this the wrong way. LeBron James has, without a doubt, deserved the last two MVPs he’s been rewarded with. Kevin Durant is the premiere scorer in this game and becoming more unstoppable as time goes on. LaMarcus Aldridge may not have the ultimate gift those two have.
However, Aldridge is the leader of one of the best teams in the NBA. We’re about one-fourth into the season, and per its Western Conference leading 16-3 record, I’m pretty sure Portland’s success isn’t a fluke. From Damian Lillard to Nicolas Batum to LaMarcus Aldridge, this team’s talent was clearly overlooked before the season.
All I’m asking out of the MVP voters is this: if the season ended today, could you please take LaMarcus Aldridge’s name into deep consideration?
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