So here's my thoughts on each award right now.
LeBron will #1, AD will be #2. In some order I'll have Butler/Giannis/Jokic for the least 3 spots.
I think that the argument that Giannis was at #1 after the RS and no one really did enough to make the argument they had an overall more impressive performance as a player makes sense.
I'm really impressed by the entirety of Butler's performance this year and while I have to acknowledge I still see Giannis as the superior player, Butler stepped up repeatedly in a pretty insane manner when his team needed it while Giannis did not. But I also acknowledge that Butler is a player with limitations and the its in part because of those limitations that the Heat play as they do which then left opponents caught a bit off-guard when Butler did a LeBron impression.
I've been a big Jokic supporter for a long time but have always been cautious about potentially overrating him. I think he really showed in this post-season that by and large that, to paraphrase Watchmen, "Jokic's isn't in here with you, you're in here with him." As in, the mismatch goes both ways and he's smarter than you. It has to be acknowledge though that the way Murray stepped up was a big deal, and Jokic's team likely gets upset in the 1st round if Murray simply plays like he'd played in his career prior to the Bubble. I felt like Murray was the most spectacular offensive player in the Bubble, and while Jokic deserves some credit for that due to how his style allows others to blossom, Murray was still something else.
I'm thinking LeBron, Luka, Jokic right now.
Luka was the POY through the regular season and did not disappoint in the playoffs, but LeBron did his whole "I've mastered this game" thing enough in the playoffs that I just see Luka as a touch too green to seriously put above him.
I believe I had Jokic 3rd in this award last year too. Close to an OPOY, but hasn't quite gotten there for me yet.
I'm thinking AD, Giannis, Gobert.
I'd become something of a skeptic on AD's defense, which was really something because no one was higher than I was on AD's defense coming into the pros. In these playoffs he just felt like a guy who when he was totally locked in on D could do more than anyone else.
Giannis was my DPOY in the RS. While at one point I thought he was going to drop lower than just a spot, by the end of things I really felt like only AD had separated himself from the pack.
I'm becoming more skeptical about Gobert but wasn't comfortable putting anyone else ahead of him.
I'm thinking Morant, Herro, and Zion. That's really elevating Herro based on the playoffs which seems a bit excessive, but competition was also pretty soft.
I'm thinking Luka, Duncan, Bam.
Hardest award for me because the criteria is so hard to nail down. Do you include the 2nd year superstar, or no? But when I see people including him, it's hard for me not to go with him. Incidentally I don't feel the same about Young. Yes he improved a lot, but the team is still terrible in part because he's so problematic defensively. I can see the case for him, but I don't feel the same "Well obviously he improved more than everyone else..." thing that I do with Luka.
After that I have the two Heat guys who I think are largely self-explanatory.
I had Ingram higher before the Bubble. Was hoping for more from him.
I think that Booker & Murray were amazing in the Bubble, but I'm not super-comfortable giving such a heavy Bubble focus on this award.
I'm thinking Dragic, Ibaka, Hill
To me these are guys who impressed all season and at the very least didn't feel exposed in the playoffs.
Tempted to put Rondo in here, but he really feels like a guy who just showed up for the playoffs.
Spoelstra, Nurse, Vogel
Feeling pretty set here. Spoelstra had a year for the age, Nurse still feels like the guy everyone in the league is chasing. I really can't emphasize enough though that I think Vogel deserves a hell of a lot of credit for what he did this year.
Thinking Riley, Presti, Connolly.
The Lakers got the best new addition of the year which normally would make Pelinka a major contender, but I credit LeBron and Klutch for this. Laker management deserves credit, to the extent it deserves any, for just getting into bed with LeBron inc and moving past the ridiculousness that was Magic.
Riley feels like the right EOY to me. The Heat this year showcased a ton of good things and had a bunch of dramatic new acquisitions and developed assets.
I don't really want Presti on my ballot because he's doing a teardown. Him doing the teardown makes sense and he's doing it well, but the only reason why he was the one milking others for assets is that they were actually in a position to try for something real and he wasn't. And he wasn't in that position because he blew it with a 3 MVP core. Now, he's the one who built the 3 MVP core so I'm not saying he's awful - I think he's quite good. But if Presti is improving his EOY candidacy by blowing opportunities, I think we have something of a problem.
Still, it's hard to get to excited about anyone else.
Connolly slides in as someone who's just clearly all on the "pro" and no "con". His actual moves in '19-20 are pretty minor, but they were good and everything the Nuggets are basically he built. He's somewhat worth a shout out.
Last note, as I've said before: The Clippers gambled, and as of right now, they didn't win the gamble. Doesn't mean you fire Lawrence Frank as an incompetent, but you don't win awards with gambles you don't win even if the gamble seemed like the best bet at the time. The fact that you can argue he still made the best move for his club at the time doesn't mean it's paid off enough to win an award for it.
Hey: With what's going on in the world, my fuse is shorter than it used to be, and it's leading my lose my cool and then go on self-imposed breaks from things (such as RealGM). Please try to keep it civil, and I'll be looking to do the same.