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The finalists have officially been announced for this year’s set of NBA awards.
The 2020-21 campaign provided yet another unique NBA season. But one thing that was no different was the level of play on the court.
The start of the playoffs also means announcing all the finalists for the regular-season awards. TNT had the honor of doing that Wednesday night, and plenty of stars are represented.
We start with the MVP finalists, including one overwhelming favorite.
NBA officially announced award finalists
Nikola Jokic is the clear MVP of the season. Joel Embiid just did not play enough, and what Jokic did with the Denver Nuggets despite Jamal Murray being out trumps Stephen Curry’s scoring performance for Golden State Warriors.
Next up is Rookie of the Year.
It’s always good when the No. 1 overall pick has a great season. Anthony Edwards, the 2020 No. 1 pick, is hoping to take home this award over No. 3 overall pick LaMelo Ball and Tyrese Haliburton, who was selected at No. 12. This award is a far more open race than MVP.
One of the more fun awards is that of Sixth Man of the Year. This slate of finalists even sees two members of the same team, which brings into question who is the true “sixth” man here.
Jordan Clarkson and Joe Ingles get the nod here after coming off the bench for the Utah Jazz. Seeing Derrick Rose included as well is a great honor as he continues his rise back to prominence in the latter part of his career.
The Jazz continue to be represented in the Defense Player of the Year finalist group.
Rudy Gobert got his maximum extension and rewarded the faith put in him. Being joined by Draymond Green and Ben Simmons is no surprise, as this group of three could shut down stars all over the league.
Speaking of the Jazz, their head coach is up for a top award as well.
Each coach on this list is worthy of being named Coach of the Year. Tom Thibodeau is working his magic in New York, Monty Williams is getting the most out of this young Phoenix Suns bunch, and Quin Snyder led the Jazz to a No. 1 seed.
The awards wrap up with Most Improved Player. Once again, the entire list is intriguing.
Julius Randle will probably take home the award here after the way he was an integral part in turning the New York Knicks around.
The finalists are out and fans can spend the postseason getting into heated debates about who deserves to win each and every one.