Howard, Bryant Headline NBA All-Defensive First Team

May 9, 2011

The NBA announced its All-Defensive First Team today, led by Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard, winner of the last three NBA Defensive Player of the Year awards. Howard totaled 56 points overall, including 27 First Team votes.

Also selected to the All-Defensive First Team were guards Rajon Rondo of the Boston Celtics (39 points) and Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers (33 points), and forwards LeBron James of the Miami Heat (38 points) and Kevin Garnett of the Boston Celtics (33 points).

Garnett and Bryant earned All-Defensive First Team honors for the ninth time, tying Michael Jordan and Gary Payton for the most in NBA history.

Although Bryant frequently split the tough perimeter defensive assignments with teammate Ron Artest, he nevertheless remains a premiere defender at three positions.  Often Bryant has had to check many of the league's elite point guards in order to help out Lakers' veteran Derek Fisher.

Howard meanwhile became the first player to win the Defensive Player of the Year award three straight seasons. He led the league with 66 double-doubles, while ranking second in rebounds (14.1
rpg) and fourth in blocks (2.38 bpg).

The NBA All-Defensive Second Team consists of guards Tony Allen of the Memphis Grizzlies and Chris Paul of the New Orleans Hornets, center Tyson Chandler of the Dallas Mavericks, forward Andre Iguodala of the Philadelphia 76ers, and forward-center Joakim Noah of the Chicago Bulls.

Chandler and Allen in particular have had a transformative impact on their respective teams this season.

Dallas has exhibited improved playoff defensive play behind the post defense and shotblocking of Chandler, leading to a second round upset of the defending champion LA Lakers.  Likewise Memphis has followed the lead of Allen's tough, lockdown, on-ball perimeter D, in upsetting top seed San Antonio.

The voting panel consisted of the NBA’s 30 head coaches, who were asked to select NBA All-Defensive First and Second Teams by position. Coaches were not permitted to vote for players from their own team.  Two points were awarded for a First Team vote and one point was awarded for a Second Team vote.

Others Receiving Votes:

Derrick Rose, Chicago, 14; Dwyane Wade, Miami, 13; Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City, 13; Gerald Wallace, Portland, 11; Grant Hill, Phoenix 11; Luol Deng, Chicago 11; Tim Duncan, San Antonio, 11; Chuck Hayes, Houston, 10; Al Horford, Atlanta 7; Josh Smith, Atlanta, 7; Ron Artest, Los Angeles Lakers, 7; Serge Ibaka, Oklahoma City, 6; Shane Battier, Memphis 5; Thabo Sefolosha, Oklahoma City, 5; Wesley Matthews, Portland 4, Kendrick Perkins, Oklahoma City, 3; Nicolas Batum, Portland, 3; Joe Johnson, Atlanta, 2; Keith Bogans, Chicago, 2; Kyle Lowry, Houston, 2; Lamar Odom, Los Angeles Lakers, 2; Luc Mbah a Moute, Milwaukee, 2; Manu Ginobili, San Antonio, 2; Andrew Bogut, Milwaukee, 1; Andrew Bynum, Los Angeles Lakers, 1; Arron Afflalo, Denver, 1; Jrue Holiday, Philadelphia, 1; Kirk Hinrich, Atlanta, 1; Nene, Denver, 1; Ronnie Brewer, Chicago, 1; Shawn
Marion, Dallas, 1; Tayshaun Prince, Detroit, 1.

By Staff of

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