The First of Many Conference Finals MVPs: Jayson Tatum and Stephen Curry

by | Jun 11, 2022 | Sports Featured

After decades of NBA playoffs, for the first time, the Magic Johnson Western Conference Finals MVP award and the Larry Bird Eastern Conference Finals MVP award were presented. After the 75th-anniversary season of the NBA, the NBA revealed a new “lineup of reimagined trophies for the NBA postseason, including an evolution of the Larry O’Brien Trophy, awarded annually to the NBA Champions.”

The Conference Finals are a prestigious place in NBA history and an award for the greatest performer during them is only fitting. And whenever there is a new award, NBA lines, or more specifically NBA futures betting lines come out. For both the ECF and WCF MVP awards, Jayson Tatum and Stephen Curry were the front runners, in terms of betting odds, as shown on BETUS.

The Larry Bird Eastern Conference Finals MVP

Throughout the matchup between the Miami Heat and the Boston Celtics, there were shows of absolute stardom from both sides. Even after Game 4, when the series was tied 2-2, betting odds for the winner of the ECF Final MVP were so close with Jayson Tatum at -115 and Jimmy Butler at +110 (lines from BETUS).

It seemed almost as if the team who was going to win the series would eventually have a clear-cut option for who would be their MVP. And after a grueling Game 7 with blows being sent from each side, the Celtics emerged victorious off of a missed Jimmy Butler 3-pointer. And undoubtedly, Jayson Tatum was awarded the Larry Bird Eastern Conference Finals MVP award. After averaging 25 points, 5.6 assists, and 8.3 rebounds while playing elite-level defense, Tatum secured his position in NBA history.

After receiving the award, Tatum was in utter shock and disbelief as he was both the ECF MVP award recipient and secured a spot in the NBA Finals. In his press release, Tatum made sure to emphasize how grateful he was and that he would make sure to show Deuce (his son) the trophy in the morning when he got back to Boston.

Jayson Tatum had not only shown glimpses of his stardom throughout his first four years in the NBA, but most importantly he grew this season into an All-NBA caliber player. Throughout the season, Tatum averaged 26.9 points and 8 rebounds and willed his team to the 2nd seed in the Eastern Conference.

The Celtics began the season with 23 wins and 24 losses and the Celtics fanbase had begun losing hope for their aspirations to get an NBA title. However, after an impressive mental switch flip, the Celtics finished the season with 51 wins and 31 losses. Not only did they achieve an impressive record, but they also finished first in the NBA for team defensive efficiency. The Celtics proved the haters and the doubters wrong after giving themselves a berth into the NBA finals behind the stellar play of their ECF Finals MVP Jayson Tatum.

The Magic Johnson Western Conference Finals MVP

Similar to the Heat and Celtics series, the Warriors and the Mavericks both displayed beautiful basketball throughout their 5 game series. Luka Doncic was stellar as he worked hard to carry his team to one victory. However, the Warriors were simply too much for the Mavericks to handle.

Throughout the entire series, Stephen Curry did exactly what he needed to. Whether it was scoring the basketball, passing the rock, or playing tremendous defense, he did it all. Stephen Curry is the true embodiment of a swiss-army knife because he does everything for your team.

And with no doubt, after averaging 23.8 points, 7.4 assists, and 6.6 rebounds throughout the Western Conference Finals, Curry willed his team to a gentlemen’s 4-1 sweep over the Mavericks.

His teammates adore him, his coaches value him greatly, and his family supports him through everything. Coach Kerr came out in the press conference and made sure to say “he’s our engine offensively.” The Warriors score through Curry whether it be by using him as a distraction or as the true scorer. Furthermore, Kerr also said “His defense all year has been totally underrated. He’s as strong as he’s ever been. He’s just able to, conditioning-wise, play 35 minutes tonight, fighting over screen after screen after screen after screen, then at the other end be on the ball, get people open, knock down his shots.”

For Curry and the Warriors, this season has to be one to remember. After two seasons, riddled with injury and lack of success, the Warriors finally proved the doubters wrong. And behind who? Stephen Curry, your Western Conference Finals MVP.


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