Granderson's 2008-09 MVP ballot
Updated: April 13, 2009, 4:00 PM ETBy | ESPN.com
We asked NBA writers from ESPN.com and ESPN The Magazine, as well as NBA analysts from ESPN, to provide their choices for NBA Most Valuable Player, ranked from 1 to 5.
Here is LZ Granderson's ballot:
No other player instills confidence the way LeBron does. In the past, the Cavs waited for LeBron to make plays for them. The Cavs are the favorites mainly because LeBron has built his teammates' spirits up, and they now make plays for each other. And more importantly for him.
| Dwyane Wade
You would be hard-pressed to find a game-changing sequence that worked in Miami's favor not featuring Wade. Statistically, it's a draw between him and LeBron, but James gets my nod because while Wade makes the Heat better, I'm not sure if he makes his teammates better.
There are two ways to look at Billups' stake in the MVP argument: Denver's record with him and Detroit's record without him. Billups doesn't always have big numbers, but he knows how to run a team. And more importantly, his hounding defense disrupts opponents' timing.
The Magic's roster is filled with players who can hardly be categorized as defensive stoppers, but having Howard in the paint covers a multitude of sins. He's a horrible passer and a liability late in games, but no way are the Magic sniffing 60 wins without his rebounding and shot-blocking/altering.
| Kobe Bryant
Without question, he is the best player in the game. But he never won 50 games post-Shaq without Pau Gasol, but Gasol won 50 without Kobe. I'm not saying Kobe's counterfeit, but he has the most talent around him of anyone else on this list so his "value" should be measured as such.
|Click the pics below to see the ballots of these ESPN writers and analysts.|