BOSTON – Avery Bradley was one of the NBA’s better defenders this past season, even as injuries limited him to just 55 games played.
The lack of court time may have been a factor in Bradley being left off the NBA’s all-defensive first and second teams which were announced on Monday.
Bradley, a member of the NBA's all-defensive first team last season, received 12 first-place votes as part of a 46-point voting total which was tops among the players who did not make the first or second team.
Golden State’s Draymond Green, Utah’s Rudy Gobert and San Antonio’s Kawhi Leonard were the top three vote-getters, which explains why they are the three finalist for the league’s Defensive Player of the Year award which will be announced tonight during the NBA Awards show which begins at 9 p.m. on TNT.
In addition to Green, Gobert and Leonard, the first team also included Los Angeles Clippers guard Chris Paul who was named to his seventh all-NBA defensive team, with this being the sixth straight time being on the first unit. Houston’s Patrick Beverley, a second-team all-NBA defensive selection following the 2013-2014 season, was also named to the first team.
The second unit included Memphis guard (and former Celtic) Tony Allen, San Antonio’s Danny Green, New Orleans center Anthony Davis with Oklahoma City’s Andre Roberson and Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo rounding out the second team.
In addition to Bradley, other Celtics receiving votes for one of the two all-defensive teams included Marcus Smart (five first-place votes, 21 points total); Jae Crowder (five points total) and Isaiah Thomas (one point total).