Kevin Durant just cannot catch a break. The league's most prolific scorer is about to complete a historic 50-40-90 shooting season, one of the most amazing in NBA history. Yet LeBron James from the Miami Heat is considered to be the unanimous choice for MVP.
At least Durant was locked in to win the league's scoring title for a fourth consecutive season. It would serve as a nice consolation prize for the league's most dangerous scorer, who had led the NBA in that category for most of the regular season.
However, a late-season surge from New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony has threatened to take the title away from the Oklahoma City superstar. Durant's scoring average of 28.3 points per game as of April 9, 2013 has been eclipsed by Anthony, who holds a narrow lead at 28.6 points per game.
Carmelo is in the middle of a scorching five-game stretch in which he has poured in 50, 40, 41, 36 and 36 points. For any naysayers out there who think he's just gunning for the title, think again. Anthony is scoring with incredible efficiency and shot over 60 percent in four of those games. His New York squad is in the middle of a 13-game winning streak so he is simply on fire and is taking full advantage of it.
What we have here is a full-scale duel for the title of NBA scoring champion. The two participants could not be more evenly matched and each of them would boost their legacy by ending this season as the league's top scorer. For Kevin Durant, it would be his fourth consecutive win as the premier shot producer in the NBA.
That would put him in rare company, as only four other players in history have pulled off that feat. It would also place his 50-40-90 shooting season in truly elite company and would have to be considered as one of the best shooting seasons of all-time.
Meanwhile, Carmelo Anthony is looking for his first scoring title. For such a dominant all-around offensive force, it might be hard to believe that he has never worn the points crown. This would mean so much for a player who has been overshadowed his entire career by LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Durant.
Carmelo has long been regarded as a fringe MVP candidate at best, but with a scoring title under his belt and a deep postseason run this summer he could drastically improve his reputation heading into next season. He is more than deserving and would join long-time Knicks legend Bernard King as the franchise's only scoring champions.
With only seven days remaining in the 2013 regular season, the race for the scoring title will be one of the more exciting finishes in recent history. Just three days, 'Melo's Knicks squared off against Kevin's Thunder and the scoring title literally changed hands throughout the game. Anthony finished the game as the leader by pouring in 36 points, compared to only 27 from Durant.
This is the sort of late-season drama that makes the NBA such a great sport and the race for the scoring title will come down to two of the premier small forwards in the game. Be sure to tune in and watch the buckets pour in during this final week of the regular season!