Despite a breakout season in 2016-17, Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert failed to capture any hardware at the NBA Awards show.
Coming into Monday night’s NBA Awards show, Utah Jazz big man Rudy Gobert seemingly had a better-than-average shot at getting some hardware. Gobert, who averaged 14 points, 12.8 rebounds and 2.6 blocks per contest last season, was a finalist for both Defensive Player of the Year and Most Improved Player.
In the end, though, the Jazz center was boxed out from individual year-end honors.
Although Gobert led the Association in blocks per game, block percentage, individual defensive rating, defensive real plus/minus and defensive win shares, it was Golden State Warriors’ Draymond Green that captured the Defensive Player of the Year award.
Green led the league in steals per game and defensive box plus/minus during the 2016-17 campaign.
Not only did Gobert miss out on DPOY honors, but the voting wasn’t that close either. Green paced the field with 434 total points, including 73 first-place votes. Gobert did come in second, but was well behind with 269 points and just 16 first-place votes. San Antonio Spurs’ star Kawhi Leonard finished third (182 points).
The Most Improved Player award went to the Milwaukee Bucks Giannis Antetokounmpo. The “Greek Freak” averaged 22.9 points 8.8 rebounds and 5.4 assists per game for the Bucks last season.
Gobert finished third in the voting for the award, with 113 points, which trailed both Antetokounmpo (428 points) and the Denver Nuggets’ Nikola Jokic (161 points). Gobert received just one first-place vote.
Two other Jazzmen also received MIP votes — Gordon Hayward received three third-place votes, while Joe Ingles got one. Meanwhile, Jazz coach Quin Snyder finished sixth in voting for the Coach of the Year award, which ultimately went to Houston Rockets headman Mike D’Antoni.
It was a tough night for Gobert and Jazz fans. On the bright side, we can probably look forward to an angry Stifle Tower working hard and doing all he can over the summer to prove voters wrong in the season ahead.