1. Join Elite Company with another All-Star Game MVP
On Saturday night during media availability, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver revealed something that should make this year’s All-Star Game MVP award more coveted than ever. Silver revealed the new trophy that would be going to the winner of the award, now named the Kobe Bryant All-Star Game MVP Award.
This, of course, adds more value to the award than ever before, as this year’s MVP will be the first to receive an award with the NBA legend’s name scribed across it. The All-Star game already has some of the most competitive players in the league playing in it every year, so there are bound to be multiple NBA stars looking to capture the award on Sunday.
While it’s probably a longshot since he isn’t starting, Russell Westbrook could move up a tier in the All-Star Game history books if he’s somehow able to capture his third All-Star Game MVP. Russ’s two awards so far have him in an eight-way tie, however adding another would put him in the company of LeBron, Michael Jordan, Shaq and Oscar Robertson.
Westbrook has already had his name written in the history books with The Big O, as he averaged a triple-double over three separate seasons, being the first one to do so since Robertson did it once in 1961-62.
Given that this will be the first award given in honor of The Black Mamba, it wouldn’t be surprising to see one of the current Lakers in LeBron James or Anthony Davis come away with the award. It would be fitting for a Laker to be its first recipient, so obviously no one would have an issue with that happening.
Russell was very close to Kobe, as were many All-Stars that will be playing on Sunday, so it’s not out of the realm of possibility that he might try for the award. Either way, Westbrook will certainly represent the city of Houston well as he laces up for what should be a memorable game.