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Can Chris Bosh compete for MVP?

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Chris Bosh is making the money of an MVP player, but can this be the year that he puts it all together and takes the league by storm?

Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Ever since Chris Bosh entered the NBA alongside LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony and Dwyane Wade, despite being named an all-star ten times, Bosh never had a MVP season,. Matter-of-fact, throughout the entire history of the Miami Heat franchise, their only MVP winner was James.

This puts the Miami Heat and the Cleveland Cavaliers in a predicament, because with two MVP trophies for each city, James has a case for his jersey hanging from the rafters in both Cleveland and Miami. This issue is a sensitive one in Miami, since Michael Jordan's jersey already resides in the American Airlines Arena. James is now and Jordan was previously, the dominate player of his era. It would be fitting for their jerseys to hang alongside each other, except for the acrimonious circumstances of James departure from Miami.

The stats for Bosh and his contemporaries since 2003 are:

Player Games Minutes Points Assists Rebounds PER
James 911 35,620 24,913 6,302 6,502 27.7
Wade 781 28,272 18,812 4,600 3,824 25.0
Anthony 830 30,295 20,924 2,545 5,437 21.2
Bosh 840 30,156 16,179 1,667 7,202 20.6

If there is any season that Chris Bosh needs to put his career's work in proper perspective, it would be in the upcoming one. Last year, when he was supposed to be a MVP candidate, the grind of four championship runs took its toll on his body, and forced him to cut his season short.

This year, with six months to recuperate and get back into peak condition, Chris Bosh will be ready to make his belated run for a MVP trophy. However his Heat teammates will present him with a friendly contest of seeing who gets the most votes among them. Dwyane Wade, Goran Dragic, Luol Deng and possibly Hassan Whiteside are all-star caliber players. Adding to the mix Justise Winslow and Josh Richardson will be fighting for playing time in their only chance at Rookie of the Year honors.

Wade is in absolutely superb physical condition and could be in contention for his one and only MVP trophy. Whiteside is in his prime years and will be making a case that last season was not a fluke. He has the tools to be an all-star player, even if not at the MVP level. Deng will try to turn back the hands of time to his all-star days in Chicago. Dragic is in charge of running the Heat offense, so he has the opportunity to put up stellar numbers with the help of a top-flight supporting cast.

Unfortunately there is one and only one MVP in the NBA among all the 450 players. With a healthy Kevin Durant returning, the chase for the prize this season will be particularly intense. The competition features Stephen Curry, James Harden, Anthony Davis, LeBron James, Kevin Durant, in addition to others having career numbers for the season. The one chosen among all the worthy candidates will only be known at after the numbers are in.

Besides the player himself, the success of the team factors into the balloting, because MVP's historically have come from a team in the NBA playoffs. The odds of a second Miami Heat player garnering the trophy depends on the team doing well this season. That and Bosh's health will determine his chances to be a top vote-getter for the prize.

Should the Heat overcome all odds and reach the NBA Finals for the fifth time in six years, Chris Bosh could find closure for the legacy he leaves behind during his playing days. His jersey might even some day hang in the AA Arena alongside those of Alonzo Mourning, Tim Hardaway, Michael Jordan, Dan Marino and Dwyane Wade.