NBA Awards Predictions


Tonight will be the first ever NBA Awards Show on TNT. Like many, I’m not a fan of waiting this long to find out who the Regular Season award winners are. The concept of an awards show isn’t a bad concept, but I think it should be done after either the first or the second round of the playoffs.

The Finalists for each of the main awards are as follows:

MVP James Harden, Kawhi Leonard, Russell Westbrook
DPOY Rudy Gobert, Draymond Green, Kawhi Leonard
6th Man Eric Gordon, Lou Williams, Andre Iguodala
MIP Giannis Antetokounmpo, Nikola Jokic, Rudy Gobert
ROY Joel Embiid, Malcolm Brogdon, Dario Saric
COY Mike D’Antoni, Gregg Popovich, Erik Spoelstra

Earlier today, the NBA announced the All-Defense and All-Rookie teams.

Quite a few surprising players receiving votes for All-Defense. Perhaps more shocking is Avery Bradley not making the first or second team. Props to Yogi Ferrell making an All-Rookie team after going undrafted and signing a 10-Day with the Mavs in January.

As for the Awards being handed out tonight, I’ll give my predictions – but first a few relevant stats:

First off, I propose that the NBA expand the MVP to five finalists. To give out an MVP trophy, without the undisputed two best players in the world present, seems silly.

Although I believe Russ, Harden, and Kawhi are all worthy of finishing top three, LeBron and KD should be there. For my pick, I think averaging a triple-double sort of speaks for itself. Russell Westbrook should be the 2016-17 NBA MVP.

For Defensive Player of the Year, I’ve gone back and forth. Because the voting took place at the end of the regular season, I believe Rudy Gobert will win. During the playoffs, it was Draymond who demonstrated that he is, without a doubt, the best defensive player on the planet.

6th Man of the Year is a bit odd this year, as two candidates come from the same team. Granted, Lou Williams spent the first half of the season with the Lakers, where he came off the bench and was their leading scorer. But I think his teammate in Houston, Eric Gordon, will end up winning tonight.

Most Improved Player is the Greek Freak, in a landslide. For my argument, check my previous piece:

For Rookie of the Year, I admit a slight bias. Dario Saric put up better overall stats, but Malcolm Brogdon played a more important role on a better team. Brogdon is the ROY. The award would have gone to Embiid, by a mile, if he had played in more than just 31 games.

I am completely torn on Coach of the Year.

Mike D’Antoni resurrected the Houston Rockets, both on and off the court, improving the culture and architecting one of the highest powered offenses in league history.

Gregg Popovich guided the Spurs to 61 wins, despite losing a top 10 player of all time. Erik Spoelstra helped an 11-30 team completely turn it around; finishing the rest of the season 30-11.

All are very deserving candidates, but I predict Mike D’Antoni will be the COY recipient.

Those are my picks, feel free to comment below and leave yours. Or get at me on twitter @Dubey23 and start a dialogue.

About Preston Dubey

Lifelong basketball fanatic and Bucks' supporter I coach basketball; but I eat, sleep, and breathe the game.

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