This is week seven of the 2013-14 regular season edition of HoopsHabit’s NBA Awards Watch. Throughout the season, we will cover the potential winners for each award. Make sure to check back every Monday for the up-to-date projections.
Most Valuable Player
Durant won the head-to-head matchup against George scoring 36 points with 10 rebounds and five assists, telling the media immediately after the game to “write about that.” Indiana beat Miami at home where George had a strong second half to finish with 17 points. James is on cruise control right now – at times to a fault, and still has the league’s highest PER. He’ll play George again on Wednesday but won’t match up against Durant for the first time this season until Jan. 29.
Most Improved Player
With many of the league’s top point guards out west, Bledsoe might not make the All-Star team, but he’s beginning to make his case for it. He scored 28 points against the new-look Kings on Friday and followed that up with 24 points, eight rebounds, eight assists against Stephen Curry and the Warriors on Sunday. Make that eight 20-point games this year for Bledsoe — he had four in his whole career before this season. Davis is expected to be on the sidelines for a few more weeks as he continues to nurse the fractured hand. George’s rise to superstar has caught everybody’s attention in his fourth year, averaging 24.1 PPG.
Rookie of the Year
The gap between Carter-Williams and Oladipo is starting to shrink. Against Cleveland, Oladipo tied his season-high of 26 points while also defending Kyrie Irving. The hype behind Carter-Williams is cooling off because of his knee injury and he’s missed the last six games. Now averaging 13.1 PPG and 5.0 APG, Burke scored 20 points against the Spurs, the second-most he’s scored this year.
Sixth Man of the Year
Crawford remains the third-scoring option for the Clippers, averaging 19.0 PPG over the past three games. In Detroit, Stuckey is posting a PER of 18.18 scoring 15.7 PPG in 27.9 minutes per game. Young is currently tied as the leading scorer for the Lakers with 14.4 PPG playing just more than 26 minutes a game.
Defensive Player of the Year
In this week’s games, Hibbert only had a total of four blocks but he’s up to 69 for the season, also averaging 9.0 RPG. The fifth-year Ibaka is ranked a not too distant third in blocks per game behind Hibbert at 2.4 per game, while also averaging close to a double-double (15.8 PPG, 9.8 RPG).