J.J. Redick, a former NBA sharpshooter and legendary college basketball player for Duke, eviscerated NBA champion Kendrick Perkins for his take on MVP voting.
Redick appeared on ESPN’s “First Take” on Tuesday and strongly pushed back on Perkins’ opinion that there’s racial bias in the voting. Perkins made the claim last week when discussing Nikola Jokic’s candidacy as the Denver Nuggets superstar continues to make a case for his third straight MVP award.
The former NBA veteran took apart Perkins’ take in a fiery moment.
“Stephen A. (Smith), I mean no offense to you. And I mean no offense to ‘First Take’ because I think this show is extremely valuable,” he prefaced. “It is an honor to be on this desk every day. It really is. But what we just witnessed is the problem with this show. Where we create narratives that do not exist in reality. The implication that you are implying – that the White voters that vote on NBA (awards) are racist, that they favor White people. You just said that.
“That’s exactly what you implied Kendrick Perkins,” Redick said as his former NBA colleague shook his head.
“I did not!” Perkins said and added, “I stated the facts!”
Perkins said he appreciated Redick for bringing up the conversation because it was something that needed to be had. Perkins claimed that his take was how “a lot of former African American players have been feeling for decades.”
Redick appeared ready to let bygones be bygones and let cooler heads prevail.
Perkins said Wednesday only three players since 1990 have won an MVP despite being outside the top 10 in points per game: Jokic in his first MVP campaign in 2020-21, Dirk Nowitzki (2006-07) and Steve Nash (2004-05, 2005-06).
“What do those guys have in common? I’ll let it sit there and marinate. You think about it,” he said, testing co-host Stephen A. Smith.
He also used a famous lyric from Jay-Z: “Is it ‘Oochie Wally’ or is it ‘One Mic?'”
The rhyme insinuated that rival Nas’ songs sent two separate messages. “Oochie Wally” contains misogynistic lyrics, while “One Mic” is more socially conscious. The lyrics are now a phrase commonly used to call out hypocrisies and double standards.
Jokic averaged a double-double in his MVP seasons the last two years. The Denver star is currently averaging 24.4 points, 11.8 rebounds and 10 assists and is well on his way to another MVP award.
Fox News’ Ryan Morik contributed to this report.