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NBA Awards 2019: 3 reasons why Paul George should win the Defensive Player of the Year Award

ANALYST
Top 5 / Top 10
513   //    20 Jun 2019, 07:12 IST

Paul George is one of the most sought-after players in the league and has just finished his second season with the Oklahoma City Thunder
Paul George is one of the most sought-after players in the league and has just finished his second season with the Oklahoma City Thunder

Paul George is one of the most sought-after players in the league and has just finished his second season with the Oklahoma City Thunder. Even though he battled shoulder injuries for a large part of the campaign, he still ended up having the best season of his NBA career thus far.

In the 2018 off-season, he has agreed to a four-year, $137 million max contract to stay with the franchise. While the Thunder did not have a great season as they exited the playoffs in the first round for the third straight season, Paul George did give the fans a lot of moments to cherish which includes high flying dunks, clutch three-pointers, game-winners and excellent defense.

Let us take a look at three reasons why Paul George should win the Defensive Player of the year award.


#3 Their record this season against the top teams

Paul George's defense on Kevin Durant
Paul George's defense on Kevin Durant

After going 48-34 last time around, the Oklahoma City Thunder have only won a game more this season to end with a 49-33 record. However, their record against the top teams speaks for itself.

Against the defending champions Golden State Warriors, they finished 1-2 and George averaged over 25 points per game. He also did a commendable job guarding Durant and Curry although he didn't completely shut them down (no one in the league does that !)

They were 3-1 against the Houston Rockets and the forward was easily the best player on the court. He made his mark guarding James Harden and clearly showed everyone why he is considered to be one of the best defenders in the league.

The Raptors and the Thunder split their series, 1-1 and George averaged 23.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, 5.5 assists and 1.5 steals per game. He was also dominant in the 2-1 series against the Los Angeles Lakers.

They swept the Portland Trail Blazers 4-0 during the regular season and this is what Portland guard Damian Lillard had to say after George dropped 47 points on them in Feburary.

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Strangely, the Thunder lost to the same Blazers team who were without their starting center in five games in the first round of the playoffs.

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