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Fan Reaction: Kobe Bryant Being Overlooked for NBA MVP?
Kobe Bryant has played through injuries, trade rumors, a divorce and a new head coach. Through it all Kobe has kept the Los Angeles Lakers in first place in the Pacific Division and he has held his team together while the rest of the NBA tries to tear them apart.
The man who once coached LeBron James on the Cleveland Cavaliers, Mike Brown, is speaking out in Kobe's favor for the 2012 NBA MVP trophy. Brown told ESPN March 7, "He definitely should be involved in the MVP talks," Brown said. "I think it's hilarious that he's not. You talk about everything new in a shortened season and everybody saying he's 85 years old or whatever they're saying and he's leading the league in scoring."
Brown is stepping back and letting Kobe take over games when necessary but Bryant is also pacing himself believe it or not. Bryant leads the NBA in scoring, averaging almost 30 points a game at the 50-game mark. This success despite an excruciating wrist injury that should have been operated on at the start of the season, a concussion and nasal fracture suffered in the All-Star Game at the hands of the Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade.
Depending on which poll you follow, Kobe is no better than a second runner up for the MVP. SB Nation rates Kobe as third favorite to win behind Miami Heat import LeBron James and fellow Florida star, Orlando Magic big man, Dwight Howard.
Looking past Kobe Bryant and what he has accomplished this year will be shortsighted and possibly vindictive of NBA writers. Bryant is putting together a season for the ages with his team in turmoil. Bryant's best friend on the Lakers was traded at the deadline and he went out and posted big numbers the next night.
Bryant has shown his NBA brethren nothing will stop him. He has gone through more than just injuries and losing his best friend Derek Fisher in a surprise trade. Bryant has also gone through divorce proceedings with his wife Vanessa.
According to the December 16, 2011 Yahoo! Sports article a released statement was brief, "The Bryants have resolved all issues incident to their divorce privately with the assistance of counsel and a judgment dissolving their marital status will be entered in 2012."
If Kobe Bryant ends the season averaging 30 plus points per game it will be tough for the NBA MVP voters to overlook the Lakers guard for the ultimate award. Bryant is a lightning rod for hatred outside of Los Angeles but even the haters have to give the Black Mamba credit this season.
*Todd Jacobs is a native Southern Californian who has followed the Los Angeles Lakers since the '70s.
ESPN: Mike Brown on Kobe Bryant for 2012 MVP
Yahoo! Sports: Kobe Bryant's wife files for divorce
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