All year it looked like Nikola Jokic would win his third NBA MVP in three years. Now it seems pretty clear that Joel Embiid will win it as he has been dominant averaging 33.1 points per game and leading his team down the stretch to secure the three seed in the East. It is even possible now that Giannis takes the second spot in the voting.
Rookie of the Year
This pick is a no brainer. All year basically Paolo Banchero has been the only guy on his team. With him being the go-to guy every game he averaged 20 points and was just 1.3 assists per game away from a 20, 5, and 5 rookie year. The next highest scorer was Bennedict Mathurin at 16.7 points per game.
Defensive Player of the Year
This selection is probably the most up in the air right now. Brook Lopez had been leading the way for the award but Jaren Jackson Jr. has better numbers and less help defensively on his team. Lopez has Giannis and Jrue Holiday funneling everyone to him while Jackson has to do it all and carried this team with Ja Morant out. The dark horse is Evan Mobley who has gotten some love late for the award for how he has led Cleveland to be one of the best defenses in the league.
6th Man of the Year
This award is weird this season but it appears Malcolm Brogdon will run away with it in the end. It is weird because Russell Westbrook was the sixth man for 49 games with the Lakers and then started every game once he was traded to the Clippers. Apparently that made him ineligible for the award because he was on two good teams, filled in nicely for Paul George when he got injured and averaged more points, rebounds, assists, steals, and blocks than Brogdon. Westbrook didn’t make the final three.
Photo Credit: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Joel_Embiid,_Ben_Simmons.jpg