Of course, this might be stating the obvious, but winning a championship is the main goal of every player that ever wore an NBA jersey. While few players focus on being honored for one's individual success, these personal achievements can be very rewarding as well. Awards such as the most valuable player or defensive player of the year are some very prestigious titles that only a few of the greatest have ever earned. Let us take a look into our NBA crystal ball, and see which player will be bringing home this year's regular season awards.
In this article, we will be predicting each winner of the five possible regular season player awards. This will include the Most Valuable Player, Defensive Player of the Year, Rookie of the Year, Most Improved Player award, and the Sixth Man of the Year. The award announcements are an exciting time in the NBA, and hopefully this gives you an idea of how the regular season will play out.
As always, feel free to leave any comments you have on these predictions, as we would love to hear your thoughts on this matter.
Here are my predictions for the NBA's 2016-17 regular season award winners.
15 Most Improved Player Honorable Mention: Harrison Barnes
Projected Stats: 19.1 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 3.1 apg, 1.1 spg, .8 bpg
14 MIP Honorable Mention: Hassan Whiteside
Projected Stats: 18.9 ppg, 13.4 rpg, 0.5 apg, 0.8 spg, 3.9 bpg
13 MIP Winner: Dennis Schroder
Projected Stats: 17.6 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 6.8 apg, 1.3 spg, 0.2 bpg
With Jeff Teague parting ways with the Hawks this offseason, Dennis Schroder is the new starting point-guard for the squad, and we will see his minutes heavily increased which will give him the opportunity to prove himself. Schroder has always been an effective player off of the bench, but this season will be his year to shine as one of the best players on the Hawks. Schroder is a dynamic scorer and a solid play-maker, and Atlanta will be dependent on Schroder's play if they want to win any games this season. His stats will rise in all categories, and Schroder will transform from a young prospect to a premier point-guard very quickly.
12 Sixth Man Honorable Mention - Jamal Crawford
Projected Stats: 13.6 ppg, 1.6 rpg, 2.0 apg, .8 spg, .1 bpg
11 Sixth Man Honorable Mention - Lou Williams
Projected Stats: 16.2 ppg, 2.7 rpg, 2.9 apg, 0.8 spg, 0.2 bpg
10 Sixth Man of the Year Winner - Enes Kanter
Projected Stats: 17.4 ppg, 9.1 rpg, 0.9 apg, 0.6 spg, 0.7 bpg
9 Rookie of the Year Honorable Mention - Kris Dunn
Projected Stats: 11.5 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 4.5 apg, 1.6 spg, 0.5 bpg
8 Rookie of the Year Honorable Mention - Brandon Ingram
Projected Stats: 14.1 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 3.2 apg, 1.3 spg, 0.7 bpg
7 Rookie of the Year Winner - Ben Simmons
Projected Stats: 13.7 ppg, 6.7 rpg, 6.2 apg, 1.2 spg, 1.0 bpg
6 Defensive Player Honorable Mention - Kawhi Leonard
Projected Stats: 22.4 pp, 7.1 rpg, 3.4 apg, 2.2 spg, 1.3 bpg
5 Defensive Player Honorable Mention - Andre Drummond
Projected Stats: 18.2 ppg, 15.2 rpg, 1.6 spg, 2.1 bpg
4 Defensive Player of the Year Winner - Hassan Whiteside
Projected Stats: 18.9 ppg, 13.4 rpg, 0.5 apg, 0.8 spg, 3.8 bpg
3 MVP Honorable Mention - Damian Lillard
Projected Stats: 27.1 ppg, 4.9 rpg, 7.1 apg, 1.2 spg, 0.3 bpg
Damian Lillard has never really been considered a serious contender for the Most Valuable Player award, but I believe this season will be his best to date, which will ultimately lead to him getting some MVP votes. Damian is incredibly valuable to the Trail Blazers, and without him, there is no doubt Portland would be one of the worst teams in the league. A clutch player with a great offensive game, Damian Lillard has become one of the best players in the league. Establishing himself as one of the best three-point shooters in the game, Lillard knocks down clutch threes night after night. Damian will carry the load for the Blazers this season.
2 MVP Honorable Mention - Russell Westbrook
Projected Stats: 28.7 ppg, 8.2 rpg, 9.3 apg, 2.3 spg, 0.4 bpg
1 Most Valuable Player Winner - LeBron James
Projected Stats: 26.4 ppg, 7.4 rpg, 7.1 apg, 1.6 spg, 0.9 bpg
I doubt there is room for a lot of debate on this one. Fresh off his historic series win against the Golden State Warriors in this year's finals, LeBron James will be hungry for more, and for the 5th time in his NBA career, he will be the Most Valuable Player. Already one of the greatest players of all time, LeBron James can do it all on the basketball court, which is clearly reflected in his stats. His teams are always one of the top teams in the league, and when it comes down to it, no other NBA player has ever been as valuable to their team asLeBron James.
Even at 31 years old, LeBron shows no signs of slowing down. Expect to find the Cavaliers at the top of the Eastern Conference again this year, with LeBron James at the helm, leading his team like he always does.
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