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James Harden receives one fifth place vote for MVP

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Boston Celtics v Brooklyn Nets - Game Five Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images

The NBA released the voting results for the Most Valuable Player on Tuesday. While Nikola Jokic became the first Nugget and lowest draft pick (41) to be awarded the honor, James Harden was the only Net to receive a vote for the coveted award, earning one fifth-place vote — worth one point — finishing 13th — tied with LeBron James and Kawhi Leonard. Among those who finished ahead of The Beard were the Knicks Julius Randle and Derrick Rose.

Neither Kevin Durant nor Kyrie Irving received a single vote.

Here’s the final balloting...

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Of course, injuries played a big factor in the voting. The Nets superstar missed a total of 28 games during the condensed season, highlighted by his right hamstring strain in the second half of the regular season.

The injury — which has him currently sidelined in the postseason with hamstring “tightness” — caused Harden to miss a career-long 18 straight contests and 20 of 21 games before returning to play in the final two games of the season. Despite injuries derailing hopes of snagging more votes in a race for his second MVP, Harden’s regular season was one for the history books.

Harden concluded the regular season averaging a near triple-double of 24.6 points, 10.8 assists, and 7.9 rebounds (career-high) to go with career-high in offensive rating (118.7) and assist-to-turnover ratio (2.74).

The Nets superstar also became the first player in league history to average 20.0+ points and 10.0+ assists in the first 30 games with a new team and his 16 triple-doubles in a Nets uniform marked the second-most in his career, behind 22 with the Rockets in 2016-17.

The impact Harden made on the court for Brooklyn during the regular season has its fingerprints all over other player's success and outside of boosting individual performances, Brooklyn went 29-7 when he was on the court and 12-11 when he was sidelined.

It was the first time in six years Harden finished outside the top 10 in MVP voting. Going back, he’d finished third, second, first, second and ninth.