With Lebron James & Lamelo Ball out indefinitely, what will be the dynamics MVP & Rookie of the year race?

Lebron James and Lamelo Ball potential frontrunners for MVP and Rookie Of the Year Respectively might miss their chance to win due to injuries.

Lebron James was starting to become the frontrunners for the MVP race, specifically the last two months.

And Lamelo Ball was the front runner for the ‘Rookie of the year award from the start of the season and was top on the front runner’s list.

However, due to injuries suffered, it seems the dynamics for the MVP and ROY will change.

Lebron James Injury

Lebron James suffered from an ankle injury during Los Angeles Lakers match up against the Atlanta Hawks on Saturday afternoon.

James left the game after twisting his ankle during the second quarter.

While trying to secure a loose ball, Hawks forward Solomon Hill fell on top of James’ right ankle, and James fell to the floor in pain. 

LeBron James injury against Atlanta Hawks
LeBron James injury against Atlanta Hawks (source: au.sports.yahoo.com)

Even so, James didn’t leave the court right away. He stayed and knocked a three-pointer before he checked out and headed to the locker.

Shortly after James exited the match, it announced that he would not return to the game.

X-rays came negative on the angle, but James was diagnosed with a high-ankle sprain after an MRI. So he is out indefinitely.

After the news, James wrote on Twitter, “Nothing anger and saddened me more than not being available to and for my teammates.

I’m hurt inside and out right now”. “The road back from recovery begins now. Back soon like I never left.” 

2020-21 MVP Race: 

As the 2020-21 NBA season enters its second half, the MVP race has gathered the heat.

As several candidates are moving places in NBA MVP Power Rankings each month.

Previously, in every season in the NBA, two or three players lead the MVP race more than the rest of the league.

This year though, more players are making their place in the MVP race as strong contenders.

In this months’ MVP power rankings, we see changes in the rankings, with James coming on the top 5.

As in the article by NBA.com, players in the top 10 list are as below:

  1. Nikola Doncic, Denver Nuggets
  2. Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers
  3. Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks
  4. LeBron James, Los Angeles Lakers
  5. Joel Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers
  6.  James Harden, Brooklyn Nets
  7. Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks
  8.  Kawhi Leonard, LA Clippers
  9. Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors
  10.  Jimmy Butler, Miami Heat

Now, James’s injury for an indefinite amount of time changes the rankings for the MVP race.

James has been averaging 25.5 points, 8.1 rebounds, 8.0 assists, and 1.1 steals per game.

James one of favorites for NBA MVP race
James one of the favorites for the NBA MVP race (source: hoopshype.com)

Meanwhile, 1st place Nikola Jokic has been averaging 27.1 points, 11.0 rebounds, 8.6 assists, 1.6 steals per game.

And 2nd place, Damian Lillard averages 30.6 points, 4.5 rebounds, 7.8 assists per game.

Similarly, 3rd place Giannis is averaging 29.1 points, 11.8 rebounds, 6.2 assists, 1.3 steals, 1.3 blocks per game.

5th place Joel Embid, top in the last ranking, is averaging 29.9 points, 11.5 rebounds, and 3.3 assists, 1.2 steals, and 1.4 blocks per game.

However, Joel has dropped from the top after he missed games due to an injury, which negatively affects his candidacy for the MVP.

James ranking after the injury

Like Joel, Lebron’s candidacy for MVP will also be affected negatively after the ankle injury he received in the game against the Hawks.

Although LeBron James hasn’t had the best of times over the past month, he finds himself in the top 5 NBA Power Rankings.

He sat out for the first time this season in the LA Lakers’ loss against the Sacramento Kings but has been in decent form.

Now, James’ injury is a big loss to the LA Lakers. The LA Lakers have lost more games; much of that has to do with James’ minor injuries and Anthony Davis’s continued absence.

 The season still has some way to go, James was currently the favorite for the 2021 NBA MVP award, but injury now creates an obstacle.

Lamelo Ball’s Injury

The Hornets announced Sunday night, Charlotte point guard LaMelo Ball suffered a fractured right wrist and is likely to be out indefinitely.

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Ball is expected to miss the rest of the season, though he continues to seek second opinions.

2020-2021 Rookie of the Year race

Recent power rankings for the NBA Rookie of the Year contain five stars making a serious impact on the league.

And they are proving the doubt placed on them before the season wrong.

1. LaMelo Ball, Charlotte Hornets

2. Anthony Edwards, Minnesota Timberwolves

3. Immanuel Quickley, New York Knicks

4. Tyrese Haliburton, Sacramento Kings

5. James Wiseman, Golden State Warriors

6. Saddiq Bey, Detroit Pistons

7. Jae’Sean Tate, Houston Rockets

8. Patrick Williams, Chicago Bulls

9. Desmond Bane, Memphis Grizzlies

10. Kenyon Martin Jr., Houston Rockets

1st place Lamelo Ball is averaging 15.8 points, 6.0 rebounds, 6.3 assists per game. 2nd place Anthony Edwards averages 15.8 points, 4.1 rebounds, 2.5 assists.

Lamelo Ball tops the NBA Rookie of the Year ranking
Lamelo Ball tops the NBA Rookie of the Year ranking (source: sportsnaut.com)

Likewise, 3rd place Immanuel Quickley averages 12.8 points, 2.3 rebounds, 2.4 assists per game.

And 4th place Tyrese Haliburton is averaging  12.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, 5.2 assists per game.

Lastly, 5th place James Wiseman averages  11.8 points, 6.0 rebounds, 0.6 assists per game.

Lamelo Ball ROY after injury

Topping the power ranking for the NBA ROY is Lamelo Ball.

LaMelo Ball has led the way for a lot of time in NBA Rookie of the Year power rankings, and the point guard continued to favorite.

Ball averaged 16 points and 6.2 assists per matchup while putting up 19.8 points on 46.8% shooting during his 20 games as a starter.

The 19-year-old played outstanding since entering the league, and he played an important part in Charlotte’s push to make the postseason.

Everyone was almost sure that this year ROY was in the name of Lamelo as he was among the best rookies in the NBA.

Since taking over the starting role back on Feb. 1, he has been among the NBA’s best all-around players.

However, Ball suffered a fractured wrist this Saturday evening which is likely to keep him out of the league remaining season.

 Ball suffers right wrist injury vs. Clippers
Ball suffers right wrist injury vs. Clippers (source: lonzowire.usatoday.com)

Just like last year, Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant won NBA Rookie of the Year while No. 1 pick Zion Williamson missed the majority of matches with a knee injury.

This year, the history might repeat, and likely favorite winner Lamelo Ball might miss his chance due to the unfortunate injury.

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