So now I'm wondering, how in the world can James earn the league MVP award next season as a member of the Superfriends? I don't see any way for him to be credited with carrying a team that includes both Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh. Even if he rises to the top of that particular heap, he will remain one-third of the power behind the Miami punch.
So let's eliminate James from this year's MVP running. And for the same reason, Dwayne Wade. That leaves Kobe.
And since this is my theory, I throw this in against him. He's peaked. He'll turn 32 in August. He must once again carry his team through the sludge of an entire season en route to the same goal he accomplished last year. And the year before. The Lakers are known for "flipping the switch" like Boston. If that switch stays off too long while LA coasts toward the playoffs, I don't think Kobe will have the numbers by late spring to garner another MVP.
That leaves Dwight. Dwight, who worked this off-season with Hakeem Olajuwon to get better, offensively. Dwight, the best defensive presence in the league, who should also return in 2010 with more offensive weapons.
Howard already does enough to be considered "most valuable", but he gets overlooked amid the flash and talcum powder of other superstars. The Magic roster is peppered with highly-trained basketball assassins, yet would have no realistic shot at a title without him.
It's unfair, but this year he might get the nod for all the wrong reasons. The flashy guys are either aging (west coast) or lost in a crowd (east coast). This may finally allow the biggest man on the floor to be recognized as the most valuable in the league.