Oklahoma City Thunder vs Miami Heat

LeBron James says Kevin Durant deserves to be MVP


Kevin Durant will be announced as the NBA’s MVP later this week, the first win of the ward for KD.

The guy who will come in second is good with that.

As the Heat focus on their second round series against the Nets, LeBron James (he of the four NBA MVPs) told the Associated Press he is good with that.

“Much respect to him and he deserves it. He had a big-time MVP season.”

What else is he going to say?

You can make a case for LeBron if you want, and I’ll agree that peak LeBron James is better than peak Durant. LeBron is a better passer, a better defender, he has more versatility.

But Durant is right on his heels and more was asked of KD — with Russell Westbrook out the Thunder getting the second seed was all about the play of Durant. He averaged 32 points a game on 50.3 percent shooting, all drawing constant double teams.

Durant earned it. Even LeBron recognizes that.

Khris Middleton dunks, Jimmy Butler can’t stop him (VIDEO)

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Khris Middleton has more expectations and more pressure on him after a breakout season in Milwaukee, followed by him getting him PAID this summer.

Well, he looked pretty good on this play against the Bulls, making the steal then throwing down despite Jimmy Butler‘s efforts to stop him.

Middleton finished with 10 points on 5-of-7 shooting for the Bucks. However, Butler had the last laugh as he went off for 23 points on 12 shots and led the Bulls to the (meaningless) preseason win.

Somebody looks comfortable: Paul George drops 20 in first quarter

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Paul George‘s first experience starting as a power forward was going up against Anthony Davis — not just one of the best power forwards in the game, one of the handful of best players in the game period. That didn’t go well for George, and he wasn’t happy about it.

His second experience was in another preseason game Tuesday, going up against the Pistons and their four, Ersan İlyasova. He’s not quite as intimidating.

George scored 20 points on 7-of-8 shooting, 4-of-5 on threes — and that was just the first quarter (you can see it all in the video above).

As we have said before, George at the four is not a bad call by the Pacers, but some of that depends on the matchup. On the nights the Pacers face Davis or Blake Griffin or LaMarcus Aldridge or Zach Randolph (or a handful of others) the Pacers’ coaching staff is going to have to adjust. But there are a lot of nights where George at the four is going to force the other team to adjust, and that will play into the Pacers’ hands.