LeBron James Wins NBA’s Most Valuable Player Award
CLEVELAND, OH - May 4, 2009 - Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James has been named the winner of the Maurice Podoloff Trophy as the 2008-09 NBA Most Valuable Player presented by Kia Motors, the NBA announced today.
James received a total of 1,172 points, including 109 first-place votes out of a possible 121, from a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada. Players were awarded 10 points for each first-place vote, seven points for each second-place vote, five points for each third-place, three points for each fourth-place vote, and one point for each fifth-place vote received.
James becomes the first player in Cavaliers franchise history to receive the award after leading the Cavaliers to an NBA and franchise-best 66-16 (.805) record. He averaged 28.4 points, 7.6 rebounds, 7.2 assists, 1.69 steals and a career-best 1.15 blocks in 37.7 minutes per game. The 6-foot-8 forward also posted career highs in games played (81), field goal percentage (.489) and free throw percentage (.780). He was the only player in the NBA to average at least 28.0 points, 7.0 rebounds and 7.0 assists per game this season. Leading the Cavs in points, rebounds, assists, steals and blocks, James became just the fourth player since the 1973-74 season (when steals and blocks became official stats) to lead his team in each category.
James led the NBA in triple-doubles (7), points per game in road games (31.5) and combined points, rebounds and assists average (43.3). He ranked second in points per game (28.4) and total fourth quarter points (515), eighth in steals (1.69), ninth in assists (7.2), tied for 14th in double-doubles (29), 23rd in blocks (1.15) and 27th in rebounds (7.6).
At 24 years, 106 days old, James is the youngest player to win the award since Moses Malone (24 years, 16 days) in 1978-79 and his 474-point margin of victory is the sixth-largest in MVP voting history (media began voting 1980-81 season).
During the season, the Akron native was named Eastern Conference Player of the Week an NBA all-time best seven times and tied the league record for most Player of the Month wins with four (November, January, March and April). He was named an Eastern Conference All-Star starter for the fifth consecutive season and finished runner-up to Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard for NBA Defensive Player of the Year.
As part of its support of the Most Valuable Player Award, Kia Motors America will donate a new Borrego SUV on behalf of James to The Urban League of Akron. Kia Motors is presenting a brand new vehicle to the charity of choice of each of four 2008-09 season-end award winners as part of the “The NBA Performance Awards Presented by Kia Motors.”
The 2008-09 NBA Most Valuable Player Award presented by Kia Motors is part of a series of on-court performance awards called “The NBA Performance Awards Presented by Kia Motors.” The series, currently in its second season, is a significant part of the multiyear marketing partnership between Kia Motors America and the NBA, and also includes the Most Improved Player, Sixth Man and Defensive Player of the Year Awards. It also includes the Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month presented by Kia Motors which are awarded during the regular season. For more information on the “The NBA Performance Awards Presented by Kia Motors” visit www.NBA.com/performanceawards.
LEBRON JAMES’ SEASON HIGHLIGHTS