Chris Bosh: Early-Season NBA MVP?

Matt FarvaContributor INovember 29, 2008

MVP—Most Valuable Player. This awarded is the NBA's best award and is given to the player who is the most valuable throughout the season. Can a player who is on a team that only has a .500 record still win the award?

Yes. Well, so far....

Many of you may be thinking that there are several players on several different teams that would also be able to earn this honour if the season ended right now. With the exception of LeBron James, who is constantly the most valuable player to his team, night in and night out, Chris Bosh has put the Toronto Raptors on his back for the early part of this 2008-09 campaign.

The Raptors have had some shaky games during the beginning of this season, mostly due to starting point guard Jose Calderon going down for two games with a hamstring injury. This meant other players needed to step up. CB4 has answered that call with authority. 

Bosh is currently second in the league in points per game with 27.7, second only to Dwayne Wade. He is ranked top five in the NBA for free throw shooting percentage amongst power forwards at .825. 

Bosh has carried the Raptors to a 8-7 record. Now this brings me back to my question about can a player on a team with a .500 record still be considered for MVP, and my answer remains the same: Yes

Some fans often assume that the best player in the league should be awarded MVP. This is wrong, the MVP in the NBA, should be a player that leads their team and comes to play every night and does everything in their power to help their team win. Bosh is filling this role on the Raptors better than anyone else on any other team in the NBA. 

Now, not by any means am I saying that Chris Bosh is the best player in the NBA. At this point in the season I strongly believe he is leading his team in the most appropriate manner. 

Some may argue that LeBron, Kobe Bryant, or Chris Paul could be put ahead of Bosh. All these players would be strong arguments as well, but all three of these players are considered elite superstars on teams with records well over .500. Cleveland (13-3), LA Lakers (13-1), and New Orleans (9-6), whose record could be much better. These players are not overlooked as often as Bosh due to him playing for the only Canadian team in the NBA.

Bosh plays on a Raptors team that is on a two-game winning streak in order to get above .500. The victories have come against a bottom-feeding Charlotte Bobcats team and a Atlanta Hawks team that has shown much improvement.

Bosh has been the key player for the Raptors in this recent winning streak, having two monstrous games. Against Charlotte, Bosh racked up 39 points and 11 rebounds, and against Atlanta last night, Bosh scored 30 points and tallied 10 rebounds, 15 of his 30 points coming in the third quarter. 

I'm not sure if I have made a believer out of anyone, but at the 15-game point of the NBA season, Chris Bosh has presented a strong case for MVP consideration and most definitely a starting spot on the NBA's Eastern All-Star team.

It would also appear that the Raptors faithful share my opinion as the MVP chants rained down on Bosh last night as he drained a free throw for a three-point play that pretty much sealed the deal for the Raptors last night against Atlanta: