Although the Finals feel like a foregone conclusion this season, there's plenty of drama in the 2016-17 NBA MVP race.
Depending on how you define "value," you can make an argument for James Harden, Kawhi Leonard, LeBron James or Russell Westbrook to take home this year's hardware. Yet on Tuesday's episode of "The Herd" on FS1, Colin Cowherd broke down why a vote for Westbrook is a vote for "Baconators."
Mark D. SmithMark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports
Colin: LeBron gets overlooked because he just wants to win
COLIN: "You know, LeBron had a game last night — it was very interesting — LeBron had 30 points and 17 rebounds. Would you have been happier, though, because he only had like six assists, if he had 30 points, 11 rebounds and then 10 assists. That would have been better, right, because it would have a catchy slogan. It would be a triple-double.
"Yeah, you know what I call 30 points and 17 rebounds? ‘Typical.’ That’s why LeBron James is my MVP. It’s not even news when LeBron goes 30, 17 and six. It’s just called typical. And that’s not a catchy phrase that induces you to buy that airline ticket.
"‘We fly real high!’ I’m buying that airline. ‘It’s not very safe, but it flies real high!’ No thanks. No thank you, I’m not interested. I want the safe airline. And I want the NBA player who for 12 years gives me 28, nine and eight, and could get a triple-double, but actually his plus-minus once again is top-10 in the league."
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Colin: Westbrook's reputation is all about a catchy slogan
COLIN: "Where is Russell Westbrook’s [plus-minus]? 45th.
"If you name Westbrook the MVP, here’s what you would be saying. We just gave the MVP to a point guard who shoots 42 percent, leads the NBA in turnovers, on a team with the 11th-best record in the league. Does that sound like it makes sense?
"By the way, forget the fact that LeBron shot 50 percent from the floor, 30, 17 and six last night, here’s what’s interesting. We’re talking about catchy slogans. And I know everybody likes catchy slogans, but let me ask you this. Is there a catchy slogan for six straight NBA Finals? … Is there a catchy slogan for ‘Best player in the world for 13 years’? I’m just wondering if there’s a catchy slogan for that."
Colin: Kawhi Leonard is much more deserving than Westbrook
COLIN: "I understand that the restaurant that I like to go to doesn’t have a ‘Baconator.’ It doesn’t have a Baconator. It’s got three Michelin stars, but it doesn’t have a Baconator. It doesn’t have a catchy slogan.
"What you watched Kawhi Leonard do last night? Go look at that box score. Go look at Kawhi Leonard’s box score last night. Westbrook doesn’t have those box scores. It is one of the great box scores of the league this year, and oh by the way, LeBron does it about 25 times a year:
"Thirty-nine minutes, 12-for-18 shooting, 4-for-5 on 3s, 11-for-11 from the free-throw line, five assists, a steal, two blocks. I wonder how many turnovers he had, because Westbrook leads the league — he had one turnover. One.
"‘Hey man, but he didn’t eat a Baconator! He didn’t fly the airline that we fly really, really high!’ He doesn’t have a slogan. Kawhi Leonard’s just great all the time."
Colin: The Spurs are Western Conference favorites thanks to Kawhi
COLIN: "Want to segue into this, congratulations Kawhi Leonard. Entertained me last night. My wife wasn’t happy because I couldn’t take my eyes off of you. But congratulations, you are my No. 2 or 3 pick for the MVP. You deserve it.
"You don’t make any headlines, you don’t have a catchy slogan. You just go out and bust your butt every night. Love him. Great player. It’s why I do believe San Antonio is now going to win the West without Durant."