Chicago Bulls’ Joakim Noah Named NBA’s Defensive Player Of The Year

(USATSI)
(USATSI)

Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah has been named the NBA’s Defensive Player of the Year.

“This is very humbling to be in this situation right now,” Noah said at a news conference.

Noah also took time to thank coach Tom Thibodeau conceding, “Without your system, this wouldn’t be possible.”

Noah dedicated his award to his beloved mentor, Tyrone Green, who passed away last week.

“This award goes to somebody who I’ll never forget,” Noah said. “Somebody who just passed and meant so much to me, who believed in me. Mr. Green, I love you and I appreciate you and I know you’re smiling down right now really proud. This award goes to you.”

Noah is in the midst of the best season of his professional career, averaging 12.6 points, 11.3 rebounds and 5.4 assists per game during the regular season.

Aside from serving as the defensive anchor for Thibodeau’s system, Noah has also become an even bigger leader on and off the floor for his teammates after the loss of Derrick Rose (knee surgery) and the trade of Luol Deng to Cleveland.

“Each year I think he’s gotten better and better,” Thibodeau said. “And I think that’s a testament to his will and determination. And he’s improved in many different areas — everyone talks about the passing and his defense but offensively his scoring, his leadership, his professionalism (have grown).”

Noah picked up 100 first-place votes and earned 555 of a possible 1,125 points; each first-place vote is worth five points, a second-place vote is worth three points and a third-place vote is worth one point.

Click here to read more.

SOURCE: ESPN
Nick Friedell

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