LeBron James came within one vote of history. He’ll have to settle for his fourth MVP award, putting him in rare company.
For nearly the entire 2013 NBA season, it seemed a foregone conclusion that James would be taking the MVP award. He perfected a deadly low-post game, upping his field goal percentage north of 50 percent and scoring nearly at will from all parts of the floor.
James was also a major reason the Heat had a near-record 27-game winning streak, and for a long stretch of the streak he had both 25 points and 60 percent or better shooting from from the field.
For the season James 26.8 points, 8.0 rebounds, and 7.3 assists this season,shooting 56 percent and leading Miami to the NBA’s best record at 66-16.
“He’s a total team guy,” teammate and friend Dwyane Wade said. “He’s humble. … He’s special. He understands the gift God gave him and he understands not many have it and it doesn’t last for too long and he wants to make sure he maximizes it.”
LeBron James ended one vote shy of a unanimous MVP, with Carmelo Anthony also netting one first-place vote. The Most Valuable Player Award is voted on by a panel of broadcasters and writers who cover the NBA.
Shaquille O’Neal was the only other player to come so close to a unanimous MVP award, as he he also took 120 of 121 possible votes in the 1999-2000 balloting.
One four other players have won the NBA MVP award four times. LeBron James joins Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Michael Jordan, Bill Russell and Wilt Chamberlain. James has won his four in a five-year span, a feat matched only by Russell.
“I’m a historian of the game. I know these guys paved the way for myself and the rest of us who are now active. It’s very humbling,” LeBron James said on Saturday.
LeBron James now will attempt to add another NBA championship to his fourth MVP award. The Miami Heat swept the Milwaukee Bucks in the first round and are favored over the Chicago Bulls in round two.