espn

LeBron James says 'valuable' in MVP open to interpretation

INDEPENDENCE, Ohio -- LeBron James won't debate whether Golden State's Stephen Curry should be the NBA's MVP this season. That's indisputable.

But James might argue about how the award's name should be defined.

One day after Curry was voted the first unanimous winner in 61 years, James, who finished third behind Curry and San Antonio's Kawhi Leonard, said the honor can be interpreted in different ways.

"I think sometimes the word 'valuable' or best player of the year, you can have different results," said James, a four-time MVP. "You know, that's not taking anything from anyone that's ever won the award."

Curry is the 11th player in league history to be voted MVP in consecutive seasons and the first to do so since James did it in 2012 and 2013. The Warriors' backcourt wizard is also the first guard to do it since Phoenix's Steve Nash in 2005 and 2006.

James, who averaged 25.3 points, 7.4 rebounds and 6.8 assists during the regular season, was awed by Curry's shooting prowess.

"Look at Steph's numbers," he said. "He averaged 30, he led the league in steals, he was 90-50-40 [shooting percentages from the free throw line, field and beyond the 3-point line], and they won 73 [games]. So, I don't -- do you have any debate over that, really, when it comes to that award? But when you talk about most 'valuable,' then you can have a different conversation. So take nothing away from him. He's definitely deserving of that award, for sure."

Coincidentally, James and Curry are both from Akron, Ohio. They were born in the same hospital 39 months apart.

Related Video
LeBron: There's a difference between most valuable and best player
LeBron: There's a difference between most valuable and best player
LeBron James comments on Steph Curry being named the first unanimous player in NBA history saying Curry deserved to win, but adds there's a difference between most valuable and best player.

Wilbon: Past MVPs should have a vote
Wilbon: Past MVPs should have a vote
Michael Wilbon says LeBron James "is right on the money" in his comments about the definition of valuable in regard to the voting for the NBA's MVP award and why past winners should have a say in who wins as well.

Related Topics:
sportsespnawardstephen currygolden state warriorsmost valuable playerinterpretationcleveland cavaliersmvpnbalebron james
(Copyright ©2017 ESPN Internet Ventures. All rights reserved.)

Load Comments