According to multiple reports on Monday afternoon, including CBS Sports, The Chicago Tribune and probasketballtalk.com, Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah wins the 2013-14 NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award.
Bulls C Joakim Noah wins NBA defensive player of the year, according to multiple media reports. » pic.twitter.com/zHZL115XxN
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) April 21, 2014
Also being considered for the award were Indiana Pacers forward Paul George and center Roy Hibbert. For most of the season, national critics and media personalities talked Hibbert up as the leading candidate to win the DPoY Award.
It was Hibbert’s ability to protect the rim against opposing offenses and use a vertical leap to avoid picking up a personal foul against opponents attacking the basket.
George earned his respect as a defender because of his ability to guard most opposing teams’ top wing player, including the likes of Kevin Durant, LeBron James, Carmelo Anthony and James Harden. PG’s length and athleticism allow him to alter opponent’s shots, affect passing lanes and defend the three-point line at a high level.
Joakim Noah looked to be most suited to win the award heading into the first round of the playoffs, among all other candidates. He anchored the league’s second-best defense, right behind the team defense of the Indiana Pacers. According to CBS Sports, Noah ranked No. 1 in the NBA in defensive rating at 95.8.
Noah averaged 1.5 blocks and 1.2 steals this season for the Bulls, to go with his double-double average of 12.6 points and 11.3 rebounds. He also dished out 5.4 assists per game in leading Chicago to the playoffs without star Derrick Rose.