December 14, 2022

The NBA's new awards and trophies: The NBA revamped its awards to rename and redesign trophies after some of the best players in league history. (More inside)

posted by NoMich to basketball at 10:31 AM - 5 comments

The Michael Jordan Trophy: Awarded to the NBA Most Valuable Player
The Jerry West Trophy: Awarded to the NBA Clutch Player of the Year
The Hakeem Olajuwon Trophy: Awarded to the NBA Defensive Player of the Year
The Wilt Chamberlain Trophy: Awarded to the NBA Rookie of the Year
The John Havlicek Trophy: Awarded to the NBA Sixth Man of the Year
The George Mikan Trophy: Awarded to the NBA Most Improved Player of the Year

posted by NoMich at 10:32 AM on December 14, 2022

The naming is great, but when you let KIA get involved as a sponsor, you're gonna end up with run of the mill bowling trophies.

posted by beaverboard at 08:11 PM on December 14, 2022

Fabulous to see the NBA honoring the greatest.

Pissed that I never had the opportunity to watch West and Mikan play.

posted by cixelsyd at 10:43 PM on December 14, 2022

The great part of watching West and Gail Goodrich play was the fluidity, ball movement and floor creativity in the blessed absence of the three point line. The court was a beautiful, unobstructed place.

posted by beaverboard at 12:19 AM on December 15, 2022

As great a 6th man as John Havlicek was, he was not the original 6th man, and he played much of his career as a starter. The trophy ought to be named the 'Frank Ramsey Award'. Ramsey was the first who specialized as the 6th man, and he played relatively few games as a starter. I'm nit picking here, but recency bias might be at play here.

I am old enough to have seen West play, at least on TV. Mikan was still active when I first started following the Celtics, but there were so few televised games, and none on network TV, that Minneapolis Lakers games vs Celtics were not shown on local channels. Back in the Pleistocene era of basketball, centers were mostly rebounders and rim defenders. Those who were taller and more rugged, like Mikan, would also be prolific scorers. Guard and shooting forward play was more important to most teams. Offenses featured a back-to-the-basket center with cutters going around him, and if he didn't hand off to a cutter, he would set a screen for a set shooter. In some ways it was a slower game, but the top notch point guards like West and Cousy ran offenses with more motion and passing. Red Auerbach insisted on playing fast break basketball, but until Bill Russell came along he had no reliable rebounder to implement it. Every once in a while I will see a modern NBA team use a play that is a throwback to the dinosaur era. Golden State frequently uses a good old fashioned screen for one of their 3-point shooters. Pick and roll plays also go back a ways; the CYO team I played on in the mid 1950s used it frequently.

posted by Howard_T at 01:01 AM on December 16, 2022

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