There were some close races for a few NBA awards this season. Most Valuable Player and Rookie of the Year were not among them.
The Minnesota Timberwolves center received all 130 first-place votes, becoming just the fifth rookie in NBA history to win the award unanimously. Damian Lillard (2013), Blake Griffin (2011), David Robinson (1990) and Ralph Sampson (1984) were the other four.
New York Knicks forward Kristaps Porzingis finished second in the voting with 363 points to Towns’ 650, while Denver Nuggets big man Nikola Jokic was a distant third with 59 points.
Towns, the Timberwolves’ No. 1 overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, lived up to the hype and then some this season. He led all rookies in points (18.3) and rebounds (10.5) per game and was second among all rookies with 1.7 blocks per game. No NBA player had higher averages in those three categories than Towns. The 7-foot Kentucky product also won all six of the Western Conference’s Rookie of the Month awards.
Towns is further proof that the future is bright in Minnesota. Andrew Wiggins won Rookie of the Year in 2015, making the Wolves the first team with back-to-back Rookie of the Year winners since the Buffalo Braves in 1973 and 1974.
The club has three more exciting young players in point guard Ricky Rubio, shooting guard Zach LaVine and forward Shabazz Muhammad and just hired former NBA Coach of the Year Tom Thibodeau.
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