The NBA announced today that Tyson Chandler won the Defensive Player of the Year award. Kevin Garnett finished fifth with two first-place votes and Avery Bradley garnered two third-place votes to earn a tie for 14th.
The full results of the voting follow courtesy of NBA.com:
2011-12 Kia NBA Defensive Player of the Year Results
I can’t complain with the Chandler choice. He did a great job covering up his teammates’ mistakes and helping to change the defensive culture in New York.
But watching Kevin Garnett on a regular basis, it’s difficult to envision anyone having a bigger impact on a team’s defense. I’ve developed a strong belief that pick-and-roll coverage is the basis of any NBA defense, and KG does that as well as anyone in the NBA now and maybe ever. I can’t find the quote now, but Greg Stiemsma said earlier this season that Garnett’s never in the wrong position defensively and there’s nobody better from whom to learn.
Garnett didn’t win his second Defensive Player of the Year award, but the fact that he is 35 years old and still in the conversation for it is a victory in and of itself. At the beginning of the 2009-10 season, when Al Harrington, Andray Blatche and Kris Humphries took turns torturing Garnett, we thought he might be washed up.