It’s gonna be a fun one in Denver tonight! Joel Embiid spoke to Shams Charania at The Athletic (with ads) about the MVP criteria constantly changing over the last couple of years and how analytics makes dumb arguments correct, while taking a little shot at Jokic:

Giannis Antetokounmpo recently told The Athletic he believes the MVP criteria is ever-changing year to year. Do you agree?

The criteria does change. If we want to talk about the last three years since I’ve been in the running for it, the first year it was that I didn’t play enough games. Last year, I came back, I played enough games, I led the league in scoring, and obviously, Nikola deserved it and he won it. But then again, he won as a sixth seed in the West. And then this year, I’m leading the league in scoring, I’m doing all of these things defensively … I should be making an All-Defensive team too. I don’t care, but every year it’s something. And when you add analytics into it, which don’t make sense. You can talk about analytics all you want. When you got some guys in the league, the eye test tells you that they’re not good defensively, but analytics tell you they’re the best defenders. That’s when analytics don’t make sense at all. I don’t make the rules, I don’t choose whatever criteria that they use, so it’s really about whatever people’s preferences are.

Talk your shit Jo! Nerds and their calculators ruined basketball conversations forever. No normal person is sitting at a bar and introducing VORP into the MVP discussion. You can just sit and watch on TV. Joel Embiid has been the best two-way player in the NBA this season. I can’t believe people can watch compilation videos of Jokic getting torched on the defensive end then turn around and see Embiid do something like this and not understand how much more valuable he is:

That’s why these made-up stats get introduced to the conversation. It’s the last bullet they have while clutching their TI-86’s. We just had one of the best weekends of March Madness ever. FAU won the most games in college basketball this year. You think any of those guys were recruited in high school because they had a great VORP? Was the ACC committee fighting over Isaiah Wong vs. Tyree Appleby’s RAPTOR to decide who gets the AAC Player of the Year trophy? Nope. Miami coaches walked into a Monsignor Bonner gym and saw Wong was an absolute bucket that could one day lead their program.

One day NBA writers are going to look back on Jokic’s two MVPs the way we do Steve Nash’s and finally admit the error of their ways. That’s why the MVP voting committee should be made up of 50% writers from The Ringer and the other half just a bunch of Uncle Jimmy’s sitting in their living room watching games with a Busch Light. That’s how you get a fair MVP vote.