Why Joe Johnson Deserves the NBA MVP

Josh JohnsonContributor INovember 26, 2008

The "Quiet Storm" is rising in Atlanta. The most underrated player in the NBA, Joe Johnson, does it all for the Hawks.

First, a little history.

An All-Star the past two seasons, Johnson has had numbers as good as anyone in the league. In 05-06, 20.2 ppg, 6.5 apg, and 4.1 rpg. In 06-07, 25 ppg, 4.2 apg, and 5.0 rpg. Last year, 21.7 ppg, 5.8 apg, and 4.5 rpg.

His points per game last year may not amaze many people, but Johnson led the Hawks to their first playoff win since 1999. In the playoffs, they took the eventual NBA champion Celtics to 7 games.

In the playoffs, Johnson shot 44 percent from three point territory, averaged 20 points, hit 90 percent from the free throw line, averaged only two turnovers, and hit several clutch, dagger shots.

After the season ended, Johnson was cut from the Olympic team that kept Tayshaun Prince, Jason Kidd, and Michael Redd. That team did win the gold medal and I support them for that, but Johnson is having a better year than all of those four, and you can add Kobe to that list too.

This year, the Hawks got off to a blazing start. They won their first five games, with Johnson leading the way. Now they are 8-5 and second place in their division, behind Orlando.

Let's look at the year JJ2 is having so far. Johnson is averaging 24 ppg, 5.2 apg, and 4.8 rpg. He is scoring more than Kobe and is third among all guards in total points, rebounds, and assists (behind only Dwayne Wade and Chris Paul).

MVP stands for most valuable player. Nobody means more to his team than Joe Johnson does to the Hawks.

Some people might say that LeBron means the most to his team, the Cleveland Cavaliers. But, the Cavs are a team of proven NBA veterans. They have 4 players on their roster with 10 or more years of NBA experience, while the Hawks only have one.

Joe Johnson for MVP might not happen, but this guy should be getting a lot  more recognition and props. He is leading his team by putting up great numbers on the court and always staying out of trouble off the court. Which to me, is the definition of an MVP.

He has no major shoe deals, clothing lines, or a Hollywood personality. He is JJ2, The Quiet Storm. JOE JOHNSON.