Predictions are hard in all walks of life.
That statement is doubly true in the world of sports, and yet people make sports predictions every single day, hoping to be part of that 1% that can say 'I told you so!' to the other 99%. That's why betting markets are so profitable.
With all predictions, the further in the future you guess something will happen, the lesser the odds of that thing happening are. That's why former NBA three-point bomber and current NBA On TNT analyst Kenny Smith's prediction is so amazing.
Back in the 2014 playoffs, TNT was covering Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals between the Oklahoma City Thunder and Los Angeles Clippers. During the halftime break, Smith predicted Westbrook's MVP win, 'spoke it into existence' as LaVar Ball would put it.
“I’m going to make a bold statement,” said Smith, noting he had predicted Durant’s MVP award a few years back. “In two years, Russell Westbrook is going to win an MVP, if he realizes he can maximize his ability to thrive in two roles, as a point guard and No. 2 guard."
“The difference is Chris Paul doesn’t have the explosivenss or the ability to go into a 2 guard situation like he does. He one day will be getting the MVP award, I think,” Smith said.
Sure, Kenny was a year off his intial prediction, but close enough, right.
It's fair to say most people thought he was crazy, including co-worker Charles Barkley...
“He just hasn’t crossed the bridge where he learned to make the players around him better,” Barkley said. “He still has the mind-set that I can get my shot anytime I want to.”
... As well as Twitter.
Ironically, Westbrook finished with a triple-double that game, a stat line that he would average over the entirety of 2016-17, propelling him to his first MVP award.