The NBA season is halfway through and we have just completed the All-Star Game on March 7. Looking ahead to the end of the season, we have ranked the favorites for the NBA awards. The Utah Jazz are the best team in the NBA this season, with a number one seed in the West, but do they have an MVP player on the roster?
What about the best coach? Tom Thibodeau has led the Knicks to a surprising playoff seed while Quin Snyder has the best record in the league. Who has the edge in the Coach of the Year? It is time to crown the players for every NBA award.
Here are the NBA Midseason awards for the 2021 season.
Coach Of The Year: Quin Snyder
Win-Loss Record: 27-9
The New York Knicks have surprised everybody this season and head coach Tom Thibodeau deserves a ton of praise, but the Utah Jazz are the best team in the NBA. The Jazz have been a top team for the last 2 years, but this season Snyder has led them to another level.
The Jazz are ranked 4th in defense, 3rd in offense, and 1st in threes made. Snyder has all players on the same page, playing hard on both ends, and sharing the basketball. The way Utah has taken care of business means Snyder is the Coach of the Year.
Rookie of the Year: LaMelo Ball
15.8 PPG, 6.0 RPG, 6.3 APG, 1.6 SPG, 0.4 BPG
LaMelo Ball is in the midst of one of the most impressive rookie campaigns in recent memory. Ball is putting up solid all-around numbers and is easily the franchise player for Michael Jordan and the Charlotte Hornets.
Ball is averaging 28.9 MPG, with a win share rating of 2.6 (64th in the league, and is leading his team in assists and steals. There is no doubt that LaMelo is the best Ball brother and he is performing how many expected Lonzo to. LaMelo is the undisputed Rookie of the Year and barring injury, he will lift the award at the end of the season.
Most Improved Player of the Year: Christian Wood
22.0 PPG, 10.2 RPG, 1.3 APG, 0.9 SPG, 1.5 BPG
There are a couple of contenders for this award, including Detroit's Jerami Grant. But Christian Wood has to take the edge as the Most Improved Player. He is averaging a double-double, and the Rockets’ 13 game losing streak is mainly due to the fact that Wood missed all of them. He is that important to the team especially with the departure of James Harden.
Grant is putting up solid numbers at 23.4 PPG and 5.3 RPG, but Detroit is one of the worst teams in the NBA when he has been healthy, and the Rockets are likely a playoff team when Wood is healthy.
Sixth Man of the Year: Jordan Clarkson
17.9 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 2.3 APG, 0.9 SPG, 0.2 BPG
No question, Jordan Clarkson is the best player coming off the bench this season. He is scoring almost 18 PPG and is an immediate fire starter coming off the bench of the best team in the Western Conference. Playing only 26.0 MPG, Clarkson is shooting 37.0% from three and 96.7% from the free-throw line.
The Utah Jazz have been a special team that have shared the wealth all season long, and Clarkson's firepower off the bench is a key factor. Clarkson was signed to a large $ contract, and he has more than made up for it.
Defensive Player of the Year: Ben Simmons
16.1 PPG, 7.9 RPG, 7.6 APG, 1.6 SPG, 0.7 BPG
The Philadelphia 76ers are the most consistent team in the Eastern Conference this season, and the defensive dominance of Ben Simmons has been one of the top two reasons why. Simmons is snatching 1.6 SPG and also blocking 0.7 BPG. Simmons is one of the most versatile defenders in the world and can handle all five positions when needed.
Simmons has a 3.7 win share rating (28th in the NBA) and is one of the two best players on the best team in the East so far. Simmons has close competition from two-time Defensive Player of the Year winner Rudy Gobert, Simmons takes the edge because of his incredible versatility.
Most Valuable Player: Joel Embiid
30.2 PPG, 11.6 RPG, 3.3 APG, 1.2 SPG, 1.4 BPG
There is no question that Joel Embiid has been the most impressive player in the NBA this season. Embiid is averaging a monster double-double and is guiding the 76ers to the best record in the Eastern Conference. While the Utah Jazz have the better record, Donovan Mitchell has not been as dominant as the All-Star center.
Embiid has upped his game under head coach Doc Rivers and is carrying Philly all season long. Playing 33.0 MPG, Embiid has a 5.8 win share rating (3rd in the league) and is the most consistent big man in the league this season. He has managed to stay healthy and dominate every game, making him the MVP favorite.