What is value in the NBA?
Value differs with context. If you are, for example, looking at how much value a player has in helping to win a championship, then Russell Westbrook is not the most valuable player in the NBA (obviously )
But, what about for the health of a franchise? How does value apply there? Who is the most valuable player in the NBA in terms of keeping a franchise relevant and profitable?
Let’s say that Russell Westbrook is traded to the Brooklyn Nets. From here, we know three things for certain:
1. He’ll sell tickets
2. He’ll contend for a playoff spot
3. He’ll attract the media with accolades and dynamic play
In short, Russell Westbrook has the ability to make any franchise relevant. He’s got the attitude, he’s got the motor, he’s got the style, and he’s got the star power. From what he wears to the arena to his endless statistical accomplishments, Russell Westbrook is an expert at attracting attention (right up there with LeBron James).
Attention, in my opinion, is more important to a small market team than winning a championship. The Knicks will always be able to sign big names, but small market teams like OKC are vulnerable because they have trouble attracting free agents. So, it’s up to the management to keep the franchise relevant (and making money). So, @theherd can complain all he wants about the franchise coddling Westbrook, but they know what they’re doing. They’re fine with the attitude and the stat padding because they know that Westbrook will sell tickets and keep them relevant.
What do you think? Are there any other players in the NBA who can carry their franchises like Westbrook did in the 2016-2017 season?
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