Indiana Pacers: Who will challenge Myles Turner for DPOY?

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Rudy Gobert – Credit: Chris Nicoll-USA TODAY Sports

Myles Turner has been exceptional for the Indiana Pacers this season. What if he misses out on the DPOY?

When the Indiana Pacers decided not to trade Myles Turner prior to this season, fans had a mixed reaction. He has never lived up to his potential but the hope is always there from a large proponent of fans, myself included. Now, under Nate Bjorkgren, Myles is having a career year.

Turner should be the frontrunner to win the DPOY award but media outlets continue to look past him. Who are the biggest threats to win that award over the league-leader in blocks?

Rudy Gobert, Utah Jazz

Rudy Gobert is almost always atop the list of candidates for Defensive Player of the Year, and rightfully so. He is a long, giant rim protector who leads the league in defensive rating at just 99.1. Gobert’s Jazz are usually pretty competitive as well, making his case that much more prominent. So far this season, Gobert is first in defensive rating and defensive win shares while also being second in blocks per game.

To add to his list of pure numbers, Gobert is second in the league in defensive rebound percentage, hauling in 33.8 percent of those boards, trailing only Andre Drummond. The biggest knock on Myles is his rebounding, which is limited due to his aggressiveness in blocking shots.

Gobert is not nearly as athletic or agile on the defensive end as Myles Turner but the Jazz are allowing just 105.4 points per game compared to 111.2 for the Pacers. Although the Pacers gave up a lot of points with Myles out of the lineup, numbers alone may sway the vote.

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