3 Steps for Shai Gilgeous-Alexander to enter the MVP race next season

NBA guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Oklahoma City Thunder
NBA guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Oklahoma City Thunder /
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Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Oklahoma City Thunder
Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Oklahoma City Thunder (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) /

3. Stay healthy and play as many games as possible

With the new CBA, this is sort of obvious. Players now have to play at least 65 regular season games to qualify for any major award, but there is more to it. Last season, Gilgeous-Alexander played 68 games, which would be enough. In the two previous seasons, however, he only played 56 and 35 games.

Not only does Gilgeous-Alexander have to be available simply to meet the league’s requirements, but with the level of competition he will face in the MVP race, he will also need every chance to showcase his talent. Embiid, Jokic, and Antetokounmpo will most likely dominate the MVP conversation once again. It is tough for a young guard to stand out amid some of the best big men in the world. If Gilgeous-Alexander is one of the league’s leading scorers, has a positive impact on defense, is durable, and brings his a-game every single game, however, people have to notice him.

Since 2016, six different players have won the MVP award—three guards and three big men—and only twice the winner did not play more than 70 regular season games (Embiid in 2022-23 with 66 games and Antetokounmpo in 2019-20 with 63).

Gilgeous-Alexander has already shown that he can hang with the league’s best but if he wants to truly be in the MVP conversation, he will have to be available pretty much all the time and use every chance he gets to set himself apart from everyone else.