- Kevin Pelton
The MVP of the playoffs has obviously been Dirk Nowitzki unless it's been LeBron James. The two stars have led their respective teams to the NBA Finals with impressive postseason performances. That begs a question as the NBA Finals get set to tip off: Which player is more important to his team?
Nowitzki's case is built around the fact that he has been the league's best scorer in the playoffs. Most go-to players see their efficiency decline as defenses load up against them, but Nowitzki has actually improved his true shooting percentage from .612 to .640 while playing a larger role in the Dallas Mavericks' offense. No one else can come close to touching Nowitzki's combination of ability to create shots and knock them down during the postseason. The league's other leaders in usage rate, James included, have been far less efficient than Nowitzki.
Kevin Pelton compares the value of Dirk Nowitzki and LeBron James. A case can be made for either player in terms of what they bring to the floor, but things change a bit when the players are resting.