NBA

What your NBA MVP favorite says about you

Reasonable people can disagree about the NBA MVP race and everyone has their own favorite. But who you prefer may say more about you than the player.

Last year’s MVP race between Giannis Antetokounmpo and James Harden sparked a thousand online arguments. Fans of the Bucks and Rockets, of course, stanned for their team’s star, but for everyone else, the dividing lines were some combination of stats and aesthetics, narrative and team success.

This year’s MVP race seems at least as wide-open and the groups of fans lining up behind each candidate tend to share some similar characteristics. Here are the top 10 MVP candidates, according to the Basketball-Reference MVP Tracker, along with what a preference for each says about you.

10. Jimmy Butler:To the great consternation of your roommates and/or partner, you never heat-up leftovers before diving in. We’re not just talking about cold pizza or room temperature lo-mein, you’ve scarfed cold cioppino and three-day old twice-baked potatoes without so much as a warm-up, as the most important people in your life look on in disgust.

9. Kyle Lowry: You’ve spent a lot of the past few weeks rethinking your personal ranking of Stephen King movie and television adaptations. You’re withholding final judgement until you can see how The Outsider ends, but for right now, you have it right above The Lawnmower Man and just below Misery.

8. Kawhi Leonard:You have completed more than one of those monochromatic jigsaw puzzles where all the pieces are exactly the same.

7. Khris Middleton: Your vinyl collection consumes all of the spare bedroom and has begun taking over space in the hallway linen closet as well. You didn’t want to pollute its analog splendor with a digital, spreadsheet tracking system so you use a physical card catalog system, hand lettered on 100% recycled cardstock.

6. Nikola Jokic: You think chicken fingers and seven-layer dip go together perfectly, like acid and Ferris wheels.

5. Luka Doncic: Your life is bathed in resplendent, ambient joy. Sometimes you find yourself staring off into space, just smiling for no reason. People always ask you if you just got back from vacation, remarking on how amazingly relaxed you look.

4. Anthony Davis: You have a red and blue beta named Fin Balor. You keep his tank on the shelf right underneath your framed Scarface poster.

3. LeBron James: Your therapist has suggested that you may be “too badge-oriented.” He proposed an experiment where you try to go a full week without updating your Instagram story with any shots from the gym or of your homemade sushi, without logging any of your west-coast IPAs in Untappd, or tweeting out your Spotify playlist for the day. It’s only Tuesday and you’re starting to crack.

2. James Harden: Yes, we’ve all heard your story about the horrific refereeing that cost you that junior-varsity playoff game. Yes, we understand that two decades is not nearly enough time to erode the sting of that injustice.

1. Giannis Antetokounmpo: You are a decisive leader, capable of wading through complex hypotheticals and charting bold paths towards the future. Your prefer Parks and Rec to The Office and anejo tequila on the rocks to whatever whiskey of the month your friends are all excited about, but like without being pretentious about it. You’ve never once said, “thank you for coming to my Ted Talk” in a trite attempt at being ironic.