Programming note: Wizards-Warriors coverage starts tonight at 7 p.m. with Warriors Pregame Live on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area, and streaming live right here.
Each Monday over the final four weeks of the regular season, I will review, comment and grade the performances of players considered the top five MVP candidates.
Our formula will include only the games of the previous week (Monday though Sunday), considering individual statistics and overall team record. We zing players who miss games due to suspension but we have mercy on the injured.
This is the third in a series that will run through April 13, the final week of the regular season. The MVP award winner will be announced in May.
The players are listed in alphabetical order and statistics reflect that week's average.
Warriors guard Stephen Curry (4 games)
THE STATS – Scoring: 18.7 points per game, on 35 percent shooting, 32.1 percent beyond the arc. Rebounding: 3.3 per game. Assists: 8.8. Steals: 1.5. Blocks: 0.0.
THE TEAM – The Warriors went 4-0.
COMMENT – Curry's shot abandoned just as sidekick Klay Thompson went down. Yet he made big shots for an undefeated team. Curry gets a B for the week.
Pelicans forward Anthony Davis (2 games)
THE STATS – Scoring: 23.0 per game, on 54.8 percent shooting, no 3-point attempts. Rebounding: 12.0. Assists: 4.5. Steals: 1.5. Blocks 2.5.
THE TEAM – The Pelicans went 1-3.
COMMENT – Davis missed the middle two games with a sprained ankle, and the team lost both. Every absence dims his unlikely MVP chances. Davis gets a B-plus.
Rockets guard James Harden (3 games)
THE STATS – Scoring: 27.7 per game, on 35 percent shooting, 25 percent beyond the arc. Rebounding: 6.7. Assists: 4.3. Steals: 1.3. Blocks: 0.7.
THE TEAM: The Rockets went 2-1.
COMMENT – That Harden shot poorly all week and still had a 50-point game is testimony to the power of 25 free throw attempts in one game. Harden gets a B.
Cavaliers forward LeBron James (4 games)
THE STATS – Scoring: 24.7 per game, on 48 percent shooting, 40.9 percent beyond the arc. Rebounding: 5.5. Assists: 5.5. Steals: 1.5. Blocks: 0.25.
THE TEAM – The Cavaliers went 3-1.
COMMENT – He played poorly and lethargically on Monday at Miami, but once he left South Beach, LeBron had a very good week. He gets an A-minus.
Thunder guard Russell Westbrook (4 games)
THE STATS – Scoring: 27.0 per game, on 33.7 percent shooting, 25 percent beyond the arc. Rebounding: 8.3. Assists: 13.3. Steals: 3.5. Blocks: 0.75.
THE TEAM – The Thunder went 3-1.
COMMENT – He shoots too much? He must. The league's most irrepressible player had two triple-doubles and came within two rebounds of a third. Westbrook gets an A.