When the NBA announced the winner of this year’s MVP award, there was very little argument about who the deserving winner actually was.
Joel Embiid had an unbelievably strong case for the award.
Embiid posted an unbelievable stat line this year, leading the league in scoring for a second consecutive season at 33.08 points per game. He also added in 10.2 rebounds and 4.2 assists per contest.
While there wasn’t any controversy over the winner, it seems one voter still managed to submit a pretty ridiculous MVP ballot.
There was one ballot that didn’t contain Nikola Jokic, who spent much of the season as the favorite to win the award and seemed like a pretty clear second option, on the list at all.
Today it was revealed that the voter who didn’t think Jokic belonged on his ballot at all was former Warriors coach and current ESPN analyst Mark Jackson.
Voter ballots for the 2023 MVP: pic.twitter.com/xDfhhI1cF8
— Harrison Grimm (@Harrison_Grimm) May 11, 2023
Instead of Jokic, Jackson had Embiid, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Jayson Tatum, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, and Donovan Mitchell.
Giannis and Tatum were numbers 3 and 4 for just about every voter with SGA and Mitchell taking a lot of 5th spots.
However, it is tough to see how any of the last 3 can be ranked about Jokic.
He was 0.2 assists per game away from averaging a triple double while leading the Nuggets to the Western Conference’s top seed.
Tatum scored the ball well this season and even grabbed 8.8 rebounds per game, but was not quite as efficient as Jokic.
SGA also averaged over 30 points per game, but played for a team that didn’t make the playoffs, which hurts the case for his “value”.
Mitchell is the obvious worst inclusion over Jokic. He averaged only 3.8 points per game than Jokic and did so much less efficiently than the Nuggets big man. Jokic statistically dominated him elsewhere.
Year after year we see NBA voters put together baffling ballots and the 2022-23 season is no exception to that.