With a 3-2 series lead in the NBA Finals over the Boston Celtics, the Golden State Warriors are on the verge of winning their fourth championship in the last eight years and becoming a true dynasty.
They can wrap things up either on Thursday in Game 6 in Boston or in Game 7 back in San Francisco.
One of the storylines that started playing out quickly was the outstanding play of Stephen Curry.
With the exception of Game 5, he has been every bit the Curry we have come to know over the past decade or so.
His best performance in this series (so far) has been Game 4, when he put his team on his back by scoring 43 points, hitting seven 3-pointers and even grabbing 10 rebounds to give Golden State a 10-point win.
Updated NBA Finals MVP odds🏆
• Stephen Curry (-360)
• Jayson Tatum (+400)
• Jaylen Brown (+1800)
• Andrew Wiggins (+2000)
• Marcus Smart (+11000)
— ClutchPoints Betting (@CPBetting) June 15, 2022
As a result, some are saying that Curry should be named the Finals MVP regardless of who wins the series.
I think no matter who wins the Golden State vs. Boston series, Steph Curry should be the MVP because he’s been dominant in the first four games!
— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) June 13, 2022
Would that be fair?
A Player On The Losing Team In The Finals Has Won The Series MVP Only Once
It makes sense that most, if not all the people who vote for the NBA Finals MVP award would want to give it to the member of the winning team.
But there was one time when a player won the award despite losing the championship.
It came in 1969 when Jerry West averaged 37.9 points and 7.4 assists in a seven-game loss to the Celtics.
In fact, he had 42 points, 13 rebounds and 12 assists in the decisive Game 7.
Alas, the snakebit Lakers lost to Bill Russell and crew by two points, and West has maintained to this day that the Finals MVP award meant bupkis to him.
In 2015, the Cleveland Cavaliers lost in the Finals to Curry’s Warriors, and there was talk of LeBron James being named series MVP despite losing the title, as he averaged 35.8 points, 13.3 rebounds and 8.8 assists.
But he shot just 39.8 percent in the series, and the honor instead went to Golden State’s Andre Igoudala.
2015 NBA Finals MVP Voting Results.
Andre Iguodala – 7 votes
Lebron James – 4 votes
Stephen Curry received 0 votes for Finals MVP.
— Product of the Slums (@DiorShurn) May 29, 2022
It Wouldn’t Make Sense To Give Curry The Award If The Warriors Lose
If the definition of “most valuable player” is a literal definition, is there really that much, if any, value to losing a world championship?
Virtually no great athlete is proud of making it to the world championship of his sport, be it the NBA Finals, Super Bowl, World Series or Stanley Cup Finals, if they lost there.
Even though Curry is the greatest outside shooter in the history of the game, he is yet to win a Finals MVP award, even though he has three championship rings.
If the Warriors were to lose these final two games, giving that award to Curry would be a sad and almost cruel irony.