The title NBA MVP has been awarded to one individual every season since 1955. It is the most prestigious individual award you can receive and the list of recipients is very impressive with several multiple award winners. Players that have won more than two include Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (6), Bill Russell (5), Michael Jordan (5), Wilt Chamberlain (4), LeBron James (4), Magic Johnson (3), Larry Bird (3) and Moses Malone (3).
All have been well deserving of the award; however, that may not have translated to an MVP-level career (or maybe it did, but was still not up to par with the rest of the winners). This could be due to injuries, lack of post-season success or the inability to replicate that one (or two) memorable season. This list looks at the 10 NBA MVP winners that had the least impressive careers. They may be Hall of Famers, but still fall short when compared to their competition.
Honorable mention goes to two first-ballot Hall of Famers, Dirk Nowitzki (Dallas Mavericks) and Karl Malone (Utah Jazz). Nowitzki won the award once and is rarely brought up as one of the all-time great players of his era. Malone on the other hand, one of the greatest power forwards of all time (also one-time MVP winner), relied heavily on his pick and roll companion, John Stockton. Had it not been for Stockton, Malone would not have put up the career numbers he had.
The list covers MVP winners from the 1968 through 2014, again, all were deserving of the award the year they won, but fell short when compared against their peers. You don’t have to win six MVP awards to avoid this list (looking at you, overachieving Kareem Abdul-Jabbar), but you need to back up your performance with consistency throughout your career. These players fell short in one way or another, here are your 10 NBA MVP winners with the worst careers.