Russell Westbrook Wins 2016-17 NBA MVP Over James Harden, Kawhi Leonard

Oklahoma City Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook has been named the 2016-17 NBA MVP, it was announced at tonight’s NBA Awards. It is the first time he has won the award in his career.

Westbrook became just the second player in NBA history (Oscar Robertson) to average a triple-double (31.6 ppg, 10.7 rpg, 10.4 apg) in a single season, leading the league in points per game and recorded more triple-doubles (42) than anyone in a single season. 

He also led the Thunder to a 47-35 record and the No. 6 seed in the Western Conference.

Westbrook beat out Houston Rockets guard James Harden, who came in second, and San Antonio Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard for the MVP award.

Harden was engaged in a close race with Westbrook throughout the course of the season, and many thought he was leading until the final month of the season.

He made the switch from shooting guard to point guard for the Rockets this season under first-year head coach Mike D’Antoni, and it proved to be a smart move. Harden led the league in assists (11.2 per game) and finished second in points (29.1) while leading Houston to a surprising 55-27 record.

Leonard, who came in third, made his case for best two-way player in the NBA with a breakout offensive season, averaging a career-best 25.5 points per game. Largely thanks to his emergence as a go-to threat, plus his defensive prowess, the Spurs went 61-21 on the year.

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Related Topics: James Harden, Thunder News, NBA News, Kawhi Leonard, Russell Westbrook