Monday, February 9

The Day Harangody's POY Chances Died

Pauly Pavilion has been home to plenty of history in its day, and the latest chapter was written on Saturday. Any chance Luke Harangody had of winning the 2009 Player of the Year disappeared. His numbers are comparable to Blake Griffin's and while his team was struggling, that the performances were equitable and he plays in a tougher conference would have some voters leaning his way. All that changed when the Fighting Irish played at UCLA and "the Goad" was held to five points on two of twelve from the field.

He's just the most recent POY candidate to be held in check to the point of single digits. Arizona State's James Harden was kept to just four points in a loss to USC. Tyler Hansbrough had only eight, when Carolina survived thanks to a buzzer beating 3-pointer by Ty Lawson at Florida State. Only a few of the POY candidates have avoided a single digit game, namely Jodie Meeks and Blake Griffin. With Meeks's team struggling through a three-game losing streak, his field goal percentage and chance at the award are slipping. While the award appears to be getting close to defaulting to Griffin, there's still another candidate that will garner some votes. Stephen Curry.

Stephen Curry was also victimized by a low no scoring night, thanks to Jimmy Patsos, but because his team still won by thirty he should feel no ill effects. With so many of the top candidates having rough patches during the season, Curry will become a fashionable choice. It's like people that claim Paul Giamatti is the country's best actor, not because of anything factual, but because he does independent and artsy films and it makes the person saying it feel superior, as if they are smarter than the average person who just can't appreciate that type of greatness. I love Steph Curry as much as the next guy, but it's a thin line between Kevin Martin and Steph Curry, and that line has a name: Jason Richards. Being paired with Richards (a NBA-caliber point guard) in the back court last season enabled Davidson's incredible run, and without that run Curry's name doesn't even enter the conversation. Curry's an incredible player, but if people were going to give Harangody the lean over Griffin because of conference, Griffin has to be extended the same courtesy.

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