Joel Embiid named a finalist for Defensive Player of the Year

Doug Mendoza
May 17, 2018

Davis was also a finalist for Defensive Player of the Year, along with Gobert and Philadelphia center Joel Embiid.

Harden may end up winning the award, but this is as worthy of an MVP field as we've seen in recent memory.

Green is the reigning Defensive Player of the Year and he was the runner-up for the award in 2015 and 2016. Mitchell took a shot at Simmons by wearing a sweatshirt with the definition of the word "rookie" on it to question Simmons' eligibility.

"It would mean a lot, but at the same time I don't really judge my success on one accolade", Simmons said recently.

The two have formed a competitive rivalry in recent months as there will be particular intrigue with who wins the award this year, with Boston Celtics forward Jayson Tatum rounding out the three. "So whatever the decision is, it is". The Raptors and Celtics finished as the top two teams in the East.

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As a finalist for the 2018 NBA Defensive MVP, Embiid, who averaged 11 rebounds and a 3.6 Real Plus-Minus rating will be facing off against fellow defensive anchors Rudy Gobert (5.15) and Anthony Davis (3.8) for the title best defender in the league.

Sixth Man of the Year: Eric Gordon (Houston Rockets), Fred VanVleet (Toronto Raptors) and Lou Williams (Los Angeles Clippers).

Harden is the frontrunner for the award as he has been the Houston Rockets' best player as they finished not only as the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference over the Golden State Warriors but as the best team in the regular season overall with an impressive 65-17 record.

Here are the finalists for the other awardsk, to be announced June 25.

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