Is Danny Green the Finals MVP?

Three games into the NBA Finals and Danny Green is leading the Spurs in scoring—making him a legitimate Finals MVP candidate.

The San Antonio Spurs took control of the NBA Finals with an impressive win over the Miami Heat and now lead the series 2-1. The Spurs’ Big Three have been struggling offensively in the series thus far, but it has been the play of the team’s role players that has sustained them offensively. No role player has been more consistent than Danny Green; his shooting from the field has been the catalyst of the Spurs’ offense.

He has been the giving the Heat trouble from behind the arc all series long. He is shooting a blazing 70% from the three-point line. In Game Three, he made seven of his nine three-pointers, helping the Spurs set a team NBA Finals record for most three-pointers made with 16.  In three games Green is scoring 18 points per game, leading the Spurs in scoring. At this pace Green is arguably the Finals Most Valuable Player.

So can a spot-up shooter be the MVP of an entire series? Or do the star players providing the space for the shooter to score deserve the award?

The Spurs’ stars Tim Duncan and Tony Parker are not scoring highly but they are putting their prints on all the team’s wins. Duncan for instance, is rebounding the ball at a high rate with 14 a game. He also anchoring the Spurs’ defense with over two blocks a game for the series. He is scoring 14 ppg and giving the team a much needed inside presence.

Now Parker is being held back by Miami’s defensive schemes, the team is determined to make him give up the ball. This strategy is hurting his stats but he is still finding ways to help the team. He is leading the team in assists and his penetration is opening driving lanes for other players.  Without Parker’s presence, the three-point line would not be open for Green and other three-point shooters.

Green is still playing a high level and deserves credit for stepping up big in these past games. He has been the model of consistency on the offensive end and he has even been very reliable on the defensive side of the ball as well.  You can expect for Duncan/Parker to step up their scoring in the games to come but if they don’t expect Danny Green to pick up the slack.    

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