Bias in the Media
Probably the biggest factor that helps determine the NBA MVP award recipient is the media and their bias towards certain players. After the voting we see journalists and analysts with a vote come out and say who they voted for and every year, it seems like a select group of voters always vote for the same person, regardless of the type of season they have had.
Of course there is always going to be an element of bias in anything that requires people to vote for someone else, but in the grand scheme of things, this really is not fair. It is unlikely that one or two votes could ultimately impact whether or not someone is to win the award, but at the end of the day, they should still be voting fair and for who had the best season, not who the best player in the league is.
If that was the case, Michael Jordan would have more MVP Awards than he could fit in his trophy cabinet, as would LeBron James. The media voters seem to always get caught up in who they prefer in this league and who they view as “the best” rather than “the best that season.”
This year, bias in the media will once again play into who wins the award, especially if some players are not as receptive to the media as others. The way they finish the season and the way they lead their team are two things media voters take into account and it is really not fair to the players.
They have no idea what happens behind closed doors and how good or bad of a leader these players are because they are hardly in those locker rooms to see how they are leading. Take Jimmy Butler for example. The media called Butler a “cancer” and “terrible teammate” when in reality, some of the Miami Heat players from last year’s team called him the best teammate they have ever had and one of the best leaders they have had.
At the end of the day, the media voters do not really know about anything other than what they perceive on the court and what they can get from the players in interviews. Everything else locker room wise and relationship wise, very select journalists and analysts know what happens, so it is not fair to criticize and punish players for something they do not know.
The MVP Award is supposed to go to the best player of that season and hopefully this year, we can truly say that the award was awarded to the right player because it is not fair to take away an accomplishment from someone that truly deserved it. The bias in the media votes will definitely still be present, but hopefully it is very minimal this year.