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The Nets, Lakers and Clippers are deservedly championship favorites.
But this isn’t just a three-horse race.
The Jazz and Suns – who’ve been the NBA’s best teams so far this season – absolutely have title chances. Even if they fall short of that ultimate prize in the playoffs, Utah and Phoenix deserve even more commendation for their overall success this year.
Jones also addressed his viral tweets about Stephen Curry and Bradley Beal in the MVP race. As promised, here’s some additional post-recording context. Players to finish top five of MVP voting while playing for teams that missed the playoffs:
1976: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (Los Angeles Lakers), 1st
1977: Pete Maravich (New Orleans Jazz), 3rd
1973: Tiny Archibald (Kansas City-Omaha Kings), 3rd
1971: Dave Bing (Detroit Pistons), 3rd
2015: Russell Westbrook (Oklahoma City Thunder), 4th
1988: Charles Barkley (Philadelphia 76ers), 4th
1975: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (Milwaukee Bucks), 5th
1972: Spencer Haywood (Seattle SuperSonics), 5th
1968: Oscar Robertson (Cincinnati Royals), 5th
1961: Oscar Robertson (Cincinnati Royals), 5th
1959 Paul Arizin (Philadelphia Warriors), 5th
1957: Maurice Stokes (Rochester Royals), 5th
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