One of the knocks on Westbrook’s MVP candidacy last season was the Thunder weren’t quite good enough. While he became only the second player in NBA history to average a triple-double over a full season, the MVP award usually goes to someone on one of the best teams in the league, not one fighting for the No. 6 seed.
It didn’t prevent him from winning the award �� 47 wins was an incredible accomplishment for a team that got nothing in return for Durant in the previous offseason �� but it’s hard to see Westbrook being named MVP this season considering the Thunder currently have a worse record despite having a much better supporting cast.
That’s not necessarily a knock on Westbrook, either, because he has been fantastic this season. He got off to a slow start, but he has averaged 26.1 points, 10.8 assists and 9.8 rebounds per game on 45.2 percent shooting from the field since Dec. 1. The Thunder have outscored opponents by 5.2 points per 100 possessions with him on the court and have been outscored by 4.6 points per 100 possession with him on the bench during that stretch.
For example, here’s what an NBA executive told ESPN’s Chad Ford in wake of Anunoby’s injury: You’re really talking about him missing a full year of basketball at that point. And teams will be a bit wary because they won’t be the ones supervising the surgery or the rehab. This draft is loaded with great prospects, and I think the injury would cause him to drop down at least one draft tier if there were healthier options available.
The Knicks still see Porzingis as a franchise cornerstone, despite the injury.
He is obviously a very important member of this basketball team and this organization and part of this New York community, Perry said earlier this month after Porzingis’ injury. We’ll deal with at that appropriate time.
Regardless of how things play out with Porzingis’ extension, the Knicks should have significant money to spend in the summer of 2020. New York currently has Tim Hardaway’s $18.9 million player option and Ntilikina’s $6.1 million team option on the books for that summer. You can add salaries for the 2018 and 2019 draft picks, Porzingis’ extension and, presumably, whichever free agents the team adds in the next two offseasons. Either way, New York should have plenty to spend that summer.