As the NBA regular season comes to a close this week, it’s that time of year when a panel of sports broadcasters and journalists submit their votes for the NBA's Most Valuable Player. It has been probable since the All-Star break that Chicago’s Derrick Rose would earn the MVP award, and it became a near lock when two-time reigning MVP LeBron James endorsed Rose for the award in late March. So now that King James and the media have settled that debate, it’s only fitting that we move on to the awards that might still provide some intrigue. No, I’m not talking about Rookie, 6th Man, or Defensive Player of the Year. I’m referring to the non-existent awards the NBA should hand out, inspired by the God of basketball journalism himself, Bill Simmons. These are the NBA Should-Be Awards.
Karl Malone Award: Named in honor of everyone's favorite former Rogaine endorser, this honor is bestowed to the player with the most prominent hair loss issues. While many players in the league with male pattern baldness take the plunge and shave their heads completely, this award is reserved for the player with the most outstanding coat of thinning locks. In a close call between finalists Chris Kaman and Manu Ginobili, the trophy has to go to Ginobili for the increased exposure his balding noggin received for being named to the Western Conference All-Star team.
Frederic Weis Award: The award is given to the player on the receiving end of the season’s most magnificent dunk. It was named after former 7’2” French center Frederic Weis, who never played in an NBA game but nonetheless rose to considerable fame for getting posterized harder than any player in human history during the 2000 Summer Olympics. This year’s award belongs to Timofey Mozgov, who learned the hard way not to bother Blake Griffin while he is busy dunking. Though Mozgov takes home the award, Othyus Jeffers nearly stole the honor late in the season for his unsuccessful attempt to draw a charge on LeBron James.
Most Improved Tattoos Award: While the award for the NBA’s Most Improved Player is still very much undecided, the Most Improved Tattoos Award was a landslide. Chris “Birdman” Andersen was already in the running for most tatted player in the league before the 2010-11 season began, but his most recent ink hardly went unnoticed. In typical Birdman fashion, his newest masterpiece spanning from jugular to jugular incorporates all the colors of the rainbow and reads “FREE BIRD,” clearly in reference to his nickname (and his status as one of the few players ever expelled from the league). However, it will be difficult for Birdman to notch back-to-back Most Improved Tattoos Awards, as his 6’11” frame seems to be running out of real estate. Only time will tell if Birdman has the boldness to explore the lone unexplored frontier: his face.
Could the tattooed stars on Birdman's ears indicate his
intentions to tattoo his whole face? We'll have to wait and see