Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban is the latest person to express an opinion in the debate regarding who should win the hotly contested NBA MVP race. It’s Cuban’s contention that Houston Rockets superstar James Harden should win it.
Keeping in mind Cuban’s willingness to move the needle with his oft-controversial comments and his penchant for stirring up trouble, it’s hardly surprising he made his case by taking a potshot at the Rockets, the team that just so happens to be the Mavs’ first-round playoff opponent.
Cuban told Grantland’s Kirk Goldsberry that he believes Harden deserves the MVP award over Stephen Curry, Russell Westbrook and LeBron James — the assumed front-runners (although it seems to be a two-horse race between Harden and Curry) — because the Rockets are the most one-dimensional team in the postseason.
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"There’s no more predictable team than the Rockets. You know exactly what they’re gonna do,” he said. “But James Harden is so good. That’s what analytics have begot. Right? Predictability. If you know what the percentages are, in the playoffs, you have time to counter them. Whether you’re good enough to do it is another question. Because they are very talented, and James Harden, I think, is the MVP. Because that’s not a very good team over there.”
Cuban, ever the showman, obviously understands how that comment will play in the media and with fans, and he’s more than happy to garner the attention, even if it’s negative. After all, there’s no such thing as negative publicity.
Cuban’s contention is somewhat accurate — the Rockets obviously rely on Harden as much as any team relies on one player — but the notion that a 56-26 team is not very good might be a bit of a stretch, to say the least.
But that’s what Cuban is all about: Throwing something out there and giddily waiting for people to overreact.