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While there are detractors who will always debate the merits of his winning the MVP in 2011, the fact is, Derrick Rose did win the MVP in 2011. It’s not impossible that he would win it again. Consider the facts.
The Bulls, sans Rose, were horrific offensively last season, and contrary to what many thought would happen, they missed him defensively as well. They surrendered 21.0 points per game to opposing point guards, tying with Houston for 22nd in the NBA. In Rose’s MVP season, they held opponents to 16.7 points, best in the NBA.
Offensively, the Bulls had the fifth-best offensive rating (media.NBA.com/STATS, subscription required) prior to the onset of his injury issues in 2012. Last year, they were 23rd. That’s a massive difference.
The Bulls also won more games than any team in the NBA over those two seasons, and winning matters when it comes to the MVP.
If the Bulls can win the most games again next season behind a healthy Rose, become a top-five offense, and return to being a team that can leads the NBA in defensive efficiency, it will be easy to make a case for him as MVP again. None of those things are outlandish.
If instead of taking one bad shot, he passes it for an assist, he could average 25 points and nine assists, with a more efficient shooting percentage. Those would certainly be MVP-caliber numbers.
So what if Rose is back and even better? And with a better supporting cast? It’s not at all unreasonable to think that he could win his second Maurice Podoloff Trophy.
Furthermore, with the breakout of Jimmy Butler and the addition of Mike Dunleavy since Rose last took the court, it’s possible that the Bulls now have a team complete enough to win the title.
And if they win the title, it’s hard to believe Rose wouldn’t win the NBA Finals MVP award as well.
It’s hard to think of a better scenario than that. You don’t need Rose-colored glasses to consider it as a realistic one either.