The Indiana Pacers are in the market for a superstar, and they’re willing to trade Paul George if it means getting one.
The paul george mvp year is a question that has been asked before. It’s unclear if Paul George will be able to return to the level of play he was at during the 2018 NBA season.
Since his days with the Indiana Pacers, Paul George has always been regarded as a superstar. Despite Paul George’s position as a top-tier wing in the NBA, many have criticized him in the past for being a postseason disappointment. When the Clippers lost a 3-1 lead during the 2019-20 season, the attitude against Paul George was far from favorable.
His most recent playoff run with the Los Angeles Clippers, on the other hand, has proven many of his detractors incorrect. Even after Kawhi Leonard suffered an ACL injury against the Utah Jazz, he managed to lead the Los Angeles Clippers to their first Western Conference Finals. It’s obvious that George stepped up in the playoffs and assumed the role of offensive focal point for the club.
Paul George will get more touches and usage on the Clippers this season while Kawhi Leonard is sidelined for the bulk of the season. He will be the Los Angeles Clippers’ No. 1 option and the team’s lone superstar. The combination of Paul George’s skill and his team’s circumstances raises the question: can he win the MVP award? In this essay, we look at the potential of that happening.
Paul George has previously been considered for the NBA’s Most Valuable Player Award.
Paul George was once a top-3 MVP contender for the Oklahoma City Thunder, something some fans may have forgotten. Paul George averaged 28.0 points per game, 8.2 rebounds per game, and 4.1 assists per game with the Thunder in the 2018-19 regular season. On the surface, his numbers made him a good contender for the honor, as he averaged 2.2 steals per game. Paul George can duplicate that level of performance in the appropriate environment, even if he didn’t win the prize.
While Paul George’s fundamental box score statistics have declined since his transfer to the Los Angeles Clippers, his volume and usage rate have increased, and he should be able to put up those kinds of numbers next season to win the MVP title. Paul George hasn’t shown that level of performance in Los Angeles yet, but he’ll be pushed into it again in the 2021-22 season.
When we go beyond the box score, it seems that Paul George’s game has improved since his Oklahoma City days. It’s worth noting that Paul George’s better spacing on the Los Angeles Clippers contributes to those statistical gains. Paul George has a 72.91 percent lineup spacing rating for the 2020-21 Clippers, according to BBall-statistics Index’s database, putting him in the 92nd percentile of all NBA players.
While the database doesn’t contain statistics for the 2018-19 Thunder lineup spacing rating, we can deduce that it wasn’t great based on the fact that only Jerami Grant and Terrance Ferguson were over league average in 3PT percentage (35.5 percent per StatMuse). Neither player had more than 4.0 attempts per game. During the regular season, the Clippers were the best shooting team in the league.
Paul George has improved statistically in a variety of offensive categories, according to the improvements themselves. The first area in which George might improve is his finishing. In 2019-20, he averaged 13.1 adjusted drives per 75 possessions, up from 9.4 in 2018-19. Since then, George’s percentage of unaided rim shots has risen from 61.3 percent to 83.8 percent. Paul George has been able to be more aggressive while driving to the cup because of the space surrounding him.
Paul George was a fantastic 3PT shooter in 2020-21 in terms of shooting %. In 2020-21, he shot 41.1 percent from three-point range, compared to 38.6 percent in 2018-19, but part of that is due to lower volume. Paul George, in particular, hit the corner 3PT far better than he did at Oklahoma, shooting 54.76 percent in 2020-21 vs 42.9 percent in 2018-19. Due to volume, Paul George’s efficiency statistics will most certainly decline next season, although not by a significant amount.
It’s also worth noting that Paul George’s isolation scoring has improved, as his 1.02 points per possession on solo plays puts him in the 94th percentile of NBA players. That figure was just 0.90 PPP for the 2018-19 season, placing him in the 73rd percentile. Between the two seasons, his total isolations per 75 were the same, at 4.6. Paul George is an excellent one-on-one player, which will be critical for him as a No. 1 option when the offense falls apart and he must create for himself.
The Clippers’ roster is mostly unchanged from last season. Even without Kawhi Leonard, they’ll have a strong three-point shooting squad in Reggie Jackson, Nicolas Batum, and Luke Kennard. If their team shooting holds up, Paul George will have a lot more room to work with and more volume on his shots. That’s a formula for Paul George to put up offensive numbers and become an MVP contender.
Paul George Must Replicate His Playoff Performance Throughout The Regular Season
Paul George averaged 29.6 points, 11.0 rebounds, and 5.6 assists per game in the Los Angeles Clippers’ postseason absence of Kawhi Leonard. It’s clear that he’s had to shoulder a significant amount of responsibility for the club throughout the playoffs, and he’s shown that he can step in as a No. 1 option. In the regular season, he also improved his numbers sans Kawhi Leonard, averaging 26.7 points per game, 7.5 rebounds per game, and 4.9 assists per game across 11 games.
To win the MVP title, he’ll have to put up statistics comparable to those from his playoff run throughout the course of the regular season’s 82 games. Paul George’s inconsistency has been one of his critics in recent years. Most fans are aware that he may go through shooting slumps. However, if Paul George goes through a slump next season, the Los Angeles Clippers will be without a quarterback.
To be an MVP, you must be able to produce consistently night after night. Even on a poor night, the greatest players offer you something to look forward to. One of the most important aspects of the Clippers’ series against the Jazz and Suns was Paul George’s aggressiveness and awareness of his role as the team’s focal point. He’ll play that position again next season, and maybe he’ll be able to perform like an MVP. The Clippers will undoubtedly need it.
Next Season, Paul George’s situation will be similar to those of other superstars who have won or been considered for MVP.
The fact that the Los Angeles Clippers aren’t widely expected to be a great regular-season team may possibly hurt Paul George’s MVP chances. According to John Hollinger of The Athletic, the Los Angeles Clippers will finish with a 38-44 record, enough for 10th place in the Western Conference.
The Los Angeles Clippers, on the other hand, are not coming into the season with any expectations, and there’s no question that they’ll attempt to contend. Nicolas Batum and Reggie Jackson were re-signed, while Eric Bledsoe was acquired through trade. The Clippers are also favored by the betting markets over Hollinger, with Peter Dewey of BetSided projecting a victory total of 45.5 for the Clippers.
Despite the unfavorable predictions, Paul George will undoubtedly be considered an MVP contender if the Los Angeles Clippers exceed and reach the 4th or 5th seed. In reality, several players have been nominated for the award or have won it after helping to improve teams with poor quality.
We may look at his former teammate Russell Westbrook, who earned the MVP award in the 2016-17 season despite leading a poor squad to the 6 seed in the playoffs. In 2020-21, Stephen Curry was a top three MVP contender who led an offensively deficient Warriors team to the play-in tournament. Even though the Oklahoma City Thunder were the 6 seed, Paul George was considered for MVP in 2018-19.
While team records and leading teams to victories are important to voters, there is precedence for Paul George being an MVP candidate/winner if he can surprise everyone and lead the Clippers to a high seed while posting absurd statistics.
For the Los Angeles Clippers and Paul George to win the MVP award next season, a lot of things must go their way. Other superstars will undoubtedly compete for the prize, and Paul George will have to outperform them in order to be considered. There have been many experts who have said that Paul George is not an MVP-caliber player, and there is no doubt that he will have an uphill fight.
However, Paul George winning MVP isn’t out of the question. With the experience on the roster, the Los Angeles Clippers can still be a decent team, and Paul George has previously been a No. 1 option. If he can dip into that mentality and provide the Clippers with semi-efficient volume output, the voters will certainly consider him for MVP.
It remains to be seen whether Paul George can transform into the player who is a genuine MVP contender. In the playoffs, he’s already silenced his detractors. Now all the Clippers need is for him to maintain that level of intensity throughout the 2021-22 season, and we may see “MV-PG” sooner rather than later.
(per BBall-Index, all advanced metrics)
The paul george mvp voting is a question that has been asked by many basketball fans. Paul George will be an unrestricted free agent in 2021 and it is possible he could become the MVP of the NBA.
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