Guess Who Made an Appearance on NBA's First MVP Ladder?

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Guess Who Made an Appearance on NBA’s First MVP Ladder?

Chicago Bulls

Should we spend time talking about MVP no more than five games into the season? Absolutely not.

Am I going to do it anyway? You betcha!

The first MVP ladder of the 2022-23 season is out at NBA dot com, and the Chicago Bulls’ DeMar DeRozan has found himself listed within the Top-5. The All-Star joins Ja Morant, Giannis Antetokounmpo, Luka Doncic, and Pascal Siakam, respectively.

The placement comes thanks to his opening night performance against the Miami Heat. Without Zach LaVine in the starting lineup, DeRozan picked up right where he left off last regular season with a dominant 37 points on 14-22 shooting, joining Michael Jordan as the only Bull to score 37 or more points in a season-opener. He also dished 9 assists, grabbed 6 rebounds, and forced 2 steals.

DeRozan only continued the impressive play in the team’s next matchup with the Washington Wizards. While the Bulls walked off the floor with a 102-100 loss, DeRozan had yet another strong all-around game with 32 points, 6 rebounds, and 6 assists. Through the team’s first five games, he is averaging 24.8 points on 51.8 percent shooting from the field. In other words, your perfectly normal DeMar DeRozan stat line.

Last season we watched similarly strong play keep him a part of the MVP conversations up until about the final month of the season. To be sure, he still felt like a long shot to win it during that time, but his name merely being part of the conversation spoke to how impressive his play truly was. This time – even if his name doesn’t stick due to less responsibility on a healthier roster – I think it serves as a reminder that he has no plans of slowing down.

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Author: Elias Schuster

Elias Schuster is the Lead Bulls Writer at Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @Schuster_Elias.