Miami Heat forward LeBron James continues to state his case for receiving the Most Valuable Player honors this season, possibly his fourth overall. On Sunday afternoon, James punctuated his on-court MVP statement with a fifth straight 30-point performance in a 107-97 win over the Los Angeles Lakers at the AmericanAirlines Arena.
Furthermore, James is accomplishing these scoring feats with tremendous efficiency. In the last five games, he averaged 31 points, 6.8 rebounds and six assists per game. In the same timeframe, he’s 55-of-77 from the field—an astounding 71 percent clip—a number that many NBA players can’t hit from the free throw line.
James’ five games of 30 points or more established the franchise record for the most consecutive 30-point games in Miami Heat history.
So is James exhibiting greatness by risking life and limb or pushing himself into the upper strata of his physical abilities? Actually, it’s quite the opposite. According to Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra, James is accomplishing these numbers with ease.
"I say this to Miami fans, don't take it for granted,” said Coach Spoelstra. “He's making greatness look easy."
Against the Lakers, James appeared to just ramshackle his way to 32 points, seven rebounds and three steals. Regardless of whether the Lakers threw Metta World Peace, a former Defensive Player of the Year, or the budding Earl Clark at James, it didn’t seem to prevent the three-time MVP from getting what he wanted when he wanted it.
“He’s out of this world,” said Lakers point guard and two-time MVP Steve Nash. “For him, this was probably just an average game.”
Prior to Sunday, James did the same thing to the other Los Angeles team, going for 30 points by playing only three quarters in a 111-89 win over the Clippers. He also put the ball through the hoop with sniper-like precision, going 9-of-11 from the field.
Among other early buzz-worthy MVP candidates, Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant and Los Angeles Clippers point guard Chris Paul, James is beating his chest the loudest thus far with his recent performances. A lot of season left to play so only time will tell who stands out in the aggregate 2012-13 season.
As far as James surpassing the most consecutive 30-point games in NBA history, that will be a daunting task—65 games—accomplished by none other than Wilt Chamberlain, which occurred from November 4, 1961 to February 22, 1962.
Passing that record will be easier said than done, even for James.