NBA announce finalists for 2023-24 regular season awards

NBA releases game schedules for 2023-24 season

The National Basketball Association (NBA) announced on Sunday the three finalists for all seven of its awards for the 2023–24 regular season.

The seven award categories include: Clutch Player of the Year, Defensive Player of the Year, Most Improved Player, Most Valuable Player, Rookie of the Year, Sixth Man of the Year, and Coach of the Year.

The finalists for each of the categories were announced during TNT’s playoffs pregame show and the winners of each award will be revealed during their coverage of the playoffs starting from Tuesday, April, 23.

The MVP race has been trimmed down to three finalists, all from teams in the Western Conference: Luka Doncic (Dallas Mavericks), Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (OKC Thunder), and two-time MVP Nikola Jokic (Denver Nuggets).

Doncic led Dallas to a fifth-place finish in the West, averaging 33.9 points per game, 9.2 rebounds, and 9.8 assists, as he also claimed the league’s scoring title. Gilgeous-Alexander helped OKC clinch the conference with averages of 30.1 points, 5.5 rebounds, and 6.2 assists, while Jokic ended the regular season averaging 26.4 points, 12.4 rebounds, and 9.0 assists.

Meanwhile, Victor Wembanyama (San Antonio Spurs) made history by becoming the first player in NBA history to be selected as one of three finalists for both the Rookie of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year awards.

The French phenom will battle compatriot Rudy Gobert (Minnesota Timberwolves) as well as Bam Adebayo (Miami Heat) for the honour of the league’s best defender. For the rookie category, he would be up against former No. 2 pick Chet Holmgren (OKC Thunder) and current No. 2 pick Brandon Miller (Charlotte Hornets).

In the race for Clutch Player of the Year, two-time MVP and four-time NBA champion Stephen Curry will face competition from DeMar DeRozan (Chicago Bulls) and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander.

Curry led the league in clutch points, finishing first with 189 total points. He also made the most field goals (59) and the most 3-pointers (32) in the clutch, which is defined as the last five minutes of a game in which the score is still within five points.

Philadelphia 76ers guard Tyrese Maxey is among the three finalists for the Most Improved Player award. He would be up against Alperen Sengun (Houston Rockets) and Coby White (Chicago Bulls).

Whereas in the Sixth Man of the Year category, Bobby Portis (Milwaukee Bucks), Malik Monk (Sacramento Kings), and Naz Reid of the Timberwolves will all battle for the honor of the best “off-the-bench” player.

Finally, three of the league’s hottest coaches, Mark Daigneault (Thunder), Chris Finch (Timberwolves), and Jamahl Mosley (Orlando Magic), all have the opportunity to be crowned Coach of the Year.

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