LeBron James is close to wresting the MVP award from Giannis Antetokounmpo’s grasp

The King might just get another crown.

LeBron James, in his 17th season, has a chance to win his fifth NBA MVP award.

The only thing standing in his way is a certain young buck.

A Milwaukee Buck.

But what was once a landslide win for Giannis Antetokounmpo is now a hotly-contested battle between the Greek Freak and the King.

It’s Giannis’ to lose, but the King has – and can continue to make – a strong case.

Milwaukee (53-9) currently sits atop the East and the NBA, while the Lakers (47-13) hold the top spot in the West.

The Greek Freak is having a historic season. He’s widely regarded as the best defensive player in the league.

His individual numbers are nearly unmatched.

Nearly.

LeBron is still in the conversation for best offensive player in the game. He doesn’t score like James Harden, but he leads the league in assists – and still scores a lot.

James’ role as dedicated point guard – for the first time ever – brings attention to his on-court leadership, which is unlike any other player in the league.

Giannis is as valuable as they c0me, but Milwaukee has had some success this season without him, despite the small sample size.

The Bucks are outscoring opponents by 11.7 points per 100 possessions without Giannis this year, while the Lakers have been outscored by 12.4 points per 100 possessions without LeBron.

In addition, the Lakers’ offensive output plummets significantly without their superstar.

Working in Giannis’ favor is the fact that the Bucks are on track to win 70 games and will most likely set a new NBA record for point differential.

But they face Eastern Conference competition for roughly two-thirds of their schedule. It must be mentioned that the Eastern Conference has seven teams that currently own 22 or fewer wins, while the Western Conference only has two teams with 22 wins or less.

LeBron and the Lakers are currently five games behind Giannis and the Bucks, but do the schedules really equate?

Stamping Nick’s point, it was announced this week that LeBron was named Western Conference Player of the Month for February.

Look at LeBron, making history and junk!

He is the first Laker to win the award in back-to-back months since Kobe Bryant.

Does the league want LeBron to win? Hmmm…the league wants who deserves it to win.

But writers vote for the MVP winner. And writers love a great story.

While Giannis’ efforts on the defensive end are impressive, MVPs immediately before him included Harden, Russell Westbrook and Steph Curry.

None of those guys are really lauded for their defensive presence.

LeBron has the numbers and the story. The final step?

The wins.

The Lakers are now entering their toughest two-week stretch of the season, starting with none other than Giannis and the Bucks at STAPLES Center on Friday, followed by a “road game” against the red hot Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday.

The Lakers are a combined 0-3 against both teams.

The “LeBron for MVP” campaign needs these wins.

If he can pull it off, what seemed like a long shot…

…might suddenly become a layup.