The Indiana Pacers had the NBA's best defense throughout the regular season and that even includes the final two weeks of the season when their league-leading defensive effort went on hiatus. So it is no surprise that the two anchors of that defense, Roy Hibbert and Paul George, were among the players receiving votes for the NBA's Defensive Player of the Year Award.
What is surprising is how poorly they finished in the voting. Memphis center Marc Gasol won the award and this isn't to say he shouldn't have been the winner. I honestly haven't seen enough of Gasol and the Grizz to compare and contrast anything but numbers with Roy Hibbert. But Hibbert was a monster around the rim for long stretches of the Pacers season. Plus, like Hibbert had Paul George, Gasol had Tony "World Peace" Allen wreaking havoc on the wings. But again, Gasol won, congrats, enjoy.
Just think the Big Dawg deserved more recognition among the voters. Not enough to win the award, which is probably a bias of seeing the bulk of the minutes Hibbert and Paul George played. I'm aware of all of the blemishes on their DPOY resume. But that top defensive ranking didn't happen by accident. Hibbert and George made it happen.
Here are the vote totals:
|Player||First-place votes||Second-place votes||Third-place votes||TOTAL POINTS|
(hat tip: Bullets Forever for the vote totals)