The 2022 NBA playoffs had their fair share of blowouts but also featured a healthy dose of outstanding performances by world-class players such as Luka Dončić, Ja Morant, and Jimmy Butler to name a few. It has always been hard to choose the playoff MVPs, but this season the choice seems to be even harder, especially with the absence of LeBron James and Kawhi Leonard.
The Bill Russell and Larry O’Brien trophies will be handed out in a couple of weeks and here are the most likely candidates to earn them:
Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors
The three-time champion, Stephen Curry, may be past his peak in terms of efficiency from the three-point line and volume, but the way he controls games has never been so good. While he hasn’t tallied 35+ points in a single postseason game, his consistency throughout the playoffs has been nothing but admirable. Winning his fourth ring will surely make him a top candidate for the MVPs.
Jayson Tatum, Boston Celtics
Jayson Tatum has scored 25+ points in 12 of the 18 playoff games he has played. His 46 points against the Milwaukee Bucks saved his team’s season while his impressive performances against Miami only confirmed his astounding growth, which makes him the scariest individual scorer in the NBA. If he manages to keep the tempo during the finals, the 24-year-old small forward may end up winning both his first ring and the MVPs.
Jimmy Butler, Miami Heat
According to numerous pundits, journalists, and basketball aficionados, the Miami Heat’s star player deserves the number one spot regardless of the fact that his team failed to reach the finals. Jimmy Butler turned in a stellar performance during the 2022 NBA playoffs and almost had his outmatched squad win the Eastern Conference finals against the Boston Celtics.
Luka Dončić, Dallas Mavericks
The Slovenian point guard/small forward helped his team reach the Western Conference finals after putting on a phenomenal performance against the Phoenix Suns, especially in Game 7. The 23-year-old averaged 31.7 points per game during the playoffs and while the Mavericks got decimated by the Warriors, Dončić’s leadership and ability to be decisive in key moments shouldn’t be underlooked when choosing the 2022 NBA playoff MVPs.
Other Notable Candidates for the MVPs
Besides these four players, other NBA stars who are considered for the MVPs are Klay Thomson from the Warriors, Jaylen Brown from the Celtics, Ja Morant from the Grizzlies, and last year’s winner Giannis Antetokounmpo from the Bucks. But no matter who wins the awards, they will have earned them fair and square.