By Jordan Kabialis
“From Chicago, At Guard, 6’3”, #1…”
With twenty games left in the NBA regular season, talk will continue to increase over who the league MVP should be.
One problem with that is there is no clear-cut definition as to what the MVP is. Many people will say that it is the player with the best statistics. Some will say that the MVP must come from an “elite” team, some will just give it to the guy whose name is the biggest.
I’ve got a definition for everyone: Derrick Rose.
You might be saying to yourself, “Dude, this guy’s crazy. A player can’t be a definition for MVP…” and you would be correct (not that I’m crazy but that a player can’t be a definition). It is everything that Rose embodies and represents that makes his name a usable definition.
If you were to put Derrick Rose on any team in the NBA, his presence would instantly increase the relevance of that team exponentially. Rose is the type of player who makes everyone around him better. This kid plays every game as if the season is on the line. He holds nothing back and gives his teammates 110% every time he is on the court.
You can’t chose the MVP based solely on numbers. Numbers don’t give you the whole story. Derrick Rose makes the Bulls the team that they are.
If someone were to tell me before the season that Carlos Boozer would miss the first month of the season and that Noah would then miss thirty games after that, and then tell me that, given that information, the Bulls would be just 2.5 games behind the Celtics for 1st place in the East, I would have had them committed right there on the spot.
It started in his rookie season when he got the Bulls to a game seven against the defending NBA Champion Celtics in his first ever playoff series. He continued to make his team better the following season, and now he has the Bulls in position to take the top seed in the East.
You can go ahead and make your case for Kobe and LeBron, maybe even Dwayne Wade, but let me stop you there.
LeBron is great too, but he doesn’t will his guys to win like Rose. LeBron never won anything in Cleveland because he didn’t have a supporting cast to his liking. Derrick Rose is the only guy I have seen that makes the very best of what he has. He has made each and every one of his teammates better. He has helped turn guys like Noah and more importantly, Luol Deng into All-Star caliber players.
I’ve heard some people make the argument that Rose is not the MVP because the guy turned the ball over and fired an air ball at the end of Sunday’s game in Miami (a game the Bulls won, by the way). Those same people go on to claim that Kobe is the league MVP because of a wonderful post-break stretch.
Really? Kobe has three great weeks and he’s MVP of the whole season? I’m also guessing that the guy has never missed a shot or made a mistake at the end of a game either, right? Unless you want to count the game against the Bulls in Chicago when Rose looked more like Kobe than Kobe.
Kobe is a great player but he didn’t really make the guys around him better. It wasn’t until the Lakers got Gasol that they really became relevant again.
People also say that the MVP must come from an elite team. Define elite. The same guy making a case against Rose for one game claims that the Bulls aren’t an elite team. Again I ask: define elite. Basically the argument being made is that the Bulls aren’t elite, they just beat the elite teams.
While I’ll admit the bulls aren’t the prettiest looking team in the NBA (and by that I mean they don’t have a lot of big names), they sure as heck play like an elite team. It is no secret that the Heat are considered one of those “elite” teams, along with Boston, San Antonio, Dallas, Los Angeles (Lakers), and for some reason, Orlando.
So why aren’t the Bulls in that list? They have beaten every single one of those teams, including a season sweep of the Heat. Beyond that they have a 7-5 record against the rest of that bunch.
Let’s take a look at how the Big 3 has faired against these so-called “elite” teams: a very appealing 2-7 record (excluding the 3 losses to the Bulls). If that is the look of an elite team, the Bulls certainly live up to those standards and Derrick Rose is a huge part of that.
When all is said and done, Derrick Rose is everything a MVP should be. He plays every game with an intensity that cannot be equaled. He wills his team to win big games. He makes everyone around him a better player. Most importantly, if someone tells him that he can’t do something, he goes out there and proves them wrong.
So how do you define MVP?