The MVP season of LeBron James continued with 39 points for the Miami Heat on Friday. LeBron James’ MVP season might be a bit under-reported because of all the attention that Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh also draw down in Miami. The fact is that he won yet another game with both of his co-stars sitting out of Friday night’s game against the Detroit Pistons. It proved once again that James is at the top of his game, and it has revealed that he might actually be getting better at the game of basketball.
In another game where the Heat were extremely short-handed, James nearly took control of the entire game. He ended the night with 39 points on 15-of-25 shooting, eight rebounds, and nine assists. He also had two key blocked shots and a steal to show that he was putting in the effort on the defensive side of the game. The Heat would end up squeaking out an 88-87 win, marking just the second time this season that they have won a game this close. It is a big step not just for James, but for the Heat organization. For at least one night, the heat also avoided talk about the team struggling with just one superstar on the court.
It might be easy to discount what James did because it was against the Pistons, but there aren’t many teams in the NBA that can win games when two of their three best players are out. Now James is averaging 26.1 points per game in the 2010-11 season to go along with 7.3 rebounds and 7.2 assists per game. 7.2 assists per game from the forward position is pretty amazing, and it is right in line with some of the best point guards in the NBA. It isn’t as good as Steve Nash or Rajon Rondo of course, but those guys are in a pass-first, shoot-second mindset.
The numbers that James is putting up in Miami are pretty unbelievable, and he is doing it all while attempting fewer shots than he took with the Cleveland Cavaliers. While James may have been overshadowed by some of the other stars in the NBA during the first part of the season, he is definitely among the five players that should receive a majority of the MVP votes for the 2010-11 season. There are a lot of games to play still this season, but the list might be down to just James, Derrick Rose, Dwight Howard, Kevin Durant, and Amare Stoudemire at this point.