Boston Celtics guard Kyrie Irving said he’s “happy” that James Harden received the league’s MVP award but believes former teammate LeBron James deserved strong consideration for the honor, too.
“MVP, it’s hard to gauge nowadays. Because now you have the people’s MVP and you have, like, the NBA’s MVP,” Irving told radio station Hot 97 in New York on Wednesday. “I think the people’s MVP was definitely James [Harden], but the NBA MVP is definitely LeBron [James].”
When asked by an interviewer if he thinks James — and not Harden — should have received the MVP award, Irving said: “If we’re talking strictly based off stats, like, he checks every mark. … He’s incredible, he’s incredible.”
Harden was revealed as the MVP winner on Monday after twice being the runner-up. He was the league’s scoring champ this season, averaging 30.4 points while leading the Rockets to a franchise-record 65 victories.
James was denied his fifth MVP trophy despite averaging 27.5 points and career highs of 9.1 assists and 8.6 rebounds while playing in all 82 regular-season games for the first time in his career.
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