Well before this entire year went haywire with the coronavirus pandemic, racial unrest and an unstable economy, Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James sounded apathetic on whether he cared about winning the NBA’s regular-season MVP award.

So after the NBA announced Friday that Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo won the honor for the second consecutive year, perhaps James will keep that broader view in perspective. We will see whether James uses that as any source of motivation when the Lakers play the Denver Nuggets Friday in Game 1 of the Western Conference Finals.

During relatively normal times, when the NBA was fixated on the intriguing awards race a week before the season was suspended, James shook his head dismissively on that line of questioning.

“It’s never motivated me. Regular-season MVP has never motivated me,” James said then. “To be the best that ever played the game has motivated me, and has resulted in me being able to be league MVP a couple times.”

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