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2013 NBA Sixth Man of the Year Rankings

Maxwell OgdenCorrespondent IIIJanuary 13, 2017

2013 NBA Sixth Man of the Year Rankings

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    One of the most misunderstood players on an NBA roster is that of a Sixth Man. This is the player that will step in and alter the pace and momentum of a game with their contributions, even as naive fans label them "not good enough to start."

    Fortunately, the evaluative mind understands their value. So who must we now honor in the race for the 2013 Sixth Man of the Year award?

    For some, there will be stars that have recently transitioned to the role of a reserve. For others, it will be the usual suspects as past winners and previous contenders make an appearance on this list.

    Regardless of who you see, all are deserving contenders. The question is, who is the mid-season Sixth Man of the Year?

Injury Exception: Lou Williams, Atlanta Hawks

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    Position: Guard

    Age: 26

    Experience: 8th Season

    2012-13 Season Averages

    16.56 PER, 28.7 MPG, 14.1 PPG, 3.6 APG, 2.1 RPG, 1.1 SPG

    Lou Williams has been extraordinary for the Atlanta Hawks.

    For virtually a third of the price, Williams is posting similar per 40 numbers in 2012-13 to star guard Joe Johnson in 2011-12.

    This is an important piece of information due to the fact that Johnson was traded this past offseason and Williams was brought in as his replacement.

    And what a job he has done.

    Unfortunately, the Associated Press reported via ESPN that Williams has suffered a Torn ACL.

    As a result, Williams will miss the remainder of the season.

    We honor his efforts and look forward to a full recovery. You will be missed this season, Mr. Williams.

Honorable Mention: Gordon Hayward, Utah Jazz

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    Position: Shooting Guard

    Age: 22

    Experience: 3rd Season

    2012-13 Season Averages

    16.22 PER, 26.6 MPG, 13.5 PPG, 2.9 RPG, 2.4 APG, 40.5% 3PT


    Playing for the Utah Jazz, it is easy to overlook Gordon Hayward.

    Even if we shouldn't.

    Hayward is averaging a career-best 13.5 points per game on 40.5 percent shooting from beyond the arc. Although he remains a suspect defender, Hayward has provided instant offense for the 11th ranked scoring offense.

    He's also been a major reason the Jazz have finally provided their elite interior with perimeter support.

    Hayward may not win this award based off of reputation, but his quality of play suggests he's in the conversation. The fact that he's only 22 indicates this won't be the last time you hear from him.

    The former NCAA star has finally come into his own in the NBA.

10. Carlos Delfino, Houston Rockets

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    Position: Small Forward

    Age: 30

    Experience: 8th Season

    2012-13 Season Averages

    13.13 PER, 10.6 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 2.3 APG, 1.0 SPG, 38.6% 3PT


    This is not to take away from James Harden's brilliant season, but anyone within the Houston Rockets organization would acknowledge this as a truth:

    Without Carlos Delfino, the Rockets would not be where they are today.

    The numbers can tell you what you want to hear, but Delfino has been superb. Not only is he a consistent three-point shooter, but he's been as big down the stretch as any player on the roster.

    Per, Delfino is shooting 37.7 percent from beyond the arc in the clutch.

    As the Rockets continue their downward spiral, Delfino's candidacy will be damaged. If the Argentinian is able to help Houston turn it around, however, Delfino could emerge as a more legitimate nominee.

    Either way, we recognize Delfino's year as a candidate that has better than the numbers.

9. Andre Miller, Denver Nuggets

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    Position: Point Guard

    Age: 36

    Experience: 14th Season

    2012-13 Season Averages

    15.22 PER, 25.6 MPG, 9.1 PPG, 5.7 APG, 2.9 RPG, 47.4% FG


    If you're compiling a list of the most underrated players in NBA history, Andre Miller might just make the cut.

    Miller continues to defy father time by performing at a high level at the age of 36.

    Thus far in 2012-13, Miller is averaging 9.1 points and 5.7 assists on 47.4 percent shooting from the floor. He's also the driving force behind the NBA's fourth-ranked facilitating team.

    Miller's ability to work the halfcourt is a major reason why.

    With all due respect to Ty Lawson, the Nuggets have struggled in the halfcourt whenever he's on the floor. Miller is the anti-Lawson, in that sense, which in turn creates a balanced offensive attack.

    As an offensive-oriented team, such success leads to victories.

    One way or another, Miller is finding a way to fill in the blanks for Denver. In other words, he's serving the role of a Sixth Man.

    What else did you expect?

8. Ray Allen, Miami Heat

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    Position: Shooting Guard

    Age: 37

    Experience: 17th Season

    2012-13 Season Averages

    16.38 PER, 25.5 MPG, 11.4 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 1.6 APG, 43.9% 3PT


    As a pure shooter and motion scorer, Ray Allen is an ageless wonder.

    At the age of 37, Allen is presently averaging 11.4 points on 43.9 percent shooting from beyond the arc. Allen's hot shooting is not just from distance, however, as he's been consistent from all over the floor.

    A slash line of .476/.439/.895 proves just that.

    Allen may be limited in other statistical categories, but he's providing instant offense. He's scored in double-figures in five of his past six games and hit at least two three-point field goals in four.

    Allen has also been a stone-cold killer in the clutch.

    The 10-time All-Star is shooting 68.8 percent on field goals and 58.3 percent on three-pointers with less than 2:00 remaining (via Basketball-Reference). He's hit more than a handful of clutch three-point field goals in that time.

    Exhibit A.

    As a star on the Miami Heat, Allen will be in contention until season's end. His quality of play warrants such consideration.

7. Andray Blatche, Brooklyn Nets

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    Position: Power Forward

    Age: 26

    Experience: 8th Season

    2012-13 Season Averages

    23.18 PER, 20.4 MPG, 11.0 PPG, 5.9 RPG, 1.0 APG, 1.1 SPG


    It took roughly a month for Andray Blatche to see consistent playing time, but since he's been granted the opportunity, he has been on an absolute tear.

    Blatche has scored in double-figures in eight of the Brooklyn Nets' 11 January games. He also has five double-doubles for the season.

    In other words, the numbers are there.

    Furthermore, Blatche has a Player Efficiency Rating of 23.18. That places him ninth in the NBA and first amongst reserves.

    You tell me—is that Sixth Man worthy?

    Blatche's minute per game average hurts his candidacy, but it also fails to reflect his impact on the team. He's a reliable scorer and a high-quality rebounder that puts forth a strong defensive impact.

    The Nets are allowing 91.6 points per 48 minutes when he's on the floor. That rises to 93.9 per 48 without (via

    Again, is that Sixth Man worthy?

6. Ryan Anderson, New Orleans Hornets

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    Position: Power Forward

    Age: 24

    Experience: 5th Season

    2012-13 Season Averages

    19.41 PER, 31.7 MPG, 16.9 PPG, 6.8 RPG, 1.3 APG, 39.6% 3PT


    Ryan Anderson is performing as well as any other name on this list.

    Unfortunately, there is one significant factor that goes against him.

    The only time the Sixth Man of the Year award winner missed the postseason was in 1994. That was Dell Curry with, coincidentally, the Charlotte Hornets.

    Charlotte went 41-41 that season and missed the playoffs by just one game. The New Orleans Hornets are just 14-28 in 2012-13.

    On a more encouraging note, the Hornets have won seven of their past 10 games.

    If N.O. is able to continue this success, Anderson's numbers will push him further up this list. Unfortunately, the way of the NBA is known and established.

    If your team isn't winning, you aren't receiving this award. No matter how well Anderson plays.

5. Manu Ginobili, San Antonio Spurs

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    Position: Shooting Guard

    Age: 35

    Experience: 11th Season

    2012-13 Season Averages

    20.90 PER, 12.8 PPG, 4.6 APG, 3.7 RPG, 1.4 SPG


    The 2008 Sixth Man of the Year and two-time All-Star is back at it.

    Manu Ginobili started slow, posting a slash line of .415/.333/.818 during the opening month. Since overcoming injuries, however, Ginobili has been on fire.

    Ginobili shot .454/.406/.833 in December and is resting at .455/.400/.828 in January.

    Overall, Ginobili now rests at .440/.377/.827.

    The true numbers in Ginobili's favor are not shooting percentages. Instead, it is the fact that Ginobili is, bar none, the most well-rounded player on this list.

    Averages of 12.8 points, 4.6 assists, 3.7 rebounds and 1.4 steals proves just that.

    As long as Ginobili can remain healthy, he will be in this competition until the final day. If he continues to battle ailments, however, he will be eliminated.

    Just count the 35-year-old slasher out.

4. Kevin Martin, Oklahoma City Thunder

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    Position: Shooting Guard

    Age: 29

    Experience: 9th Season

    2012-13 Season Averages

    16.35 PER, 30.0 MPG, 15.0 PPG, 2.4 RPG, 1.3 APG, 1.0 SPG, 43.9% 3PT


    Thus far in 2012-13, Oklahoma City Thunder sixth man Kevin Martin has been one of the most efficient offensive forces in the NBA.

    Martin is presently averaging 15.0 points per game on a slash line of .446/.439/.912. He's also averaging just 1.4 turnovers.

    In turn, the Thunder are averaging 7.8 more points per 48 minutes and 5.5 points more per 100 possessions with Martin on the floor than without (via

    Although he's not quite the well-rounded player that James Harden has proven to be, Martin is a perfect fit in OKC. His smooth shooting has helped both Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant flirt with career-highs in assists per game.

    If you're looking for instant offense from a sixth man, Martin is your guy.

    In his first year in such a role, he's also a frontrunner for the award.

3. Jarrett Jack, Golden State Warriors

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    Position: Point Guard

    Age: 29

    Experience: 8th Season

    2012-13 Season Averages

    17.06 PER, 28.5 MPG, 12.5 PPG, 5.6 APG, 3.3 RPG, 0.8 SPG


    As great as Carl Landry has been, point guard Jarrett Jack is the leading candidate for the Golden State Warriors.

    Over the span of his past six games, Jack is averaging 16.3 points, 8.3 assists and 3.3 rebounds. He posted three consecutive double-doubles during that time.

    During the double-double stretch, Jack averaged 21.0 points, 10.7 assists, 3.3 rebounds and 1.0 steals per contest. He committed just 1.7 turnovers.

    Need we say more?

    For the season, Jack is averaging 12.5 points and 5.6 assists on a slash line of .479/.373/.859. Whichever way you cut it, Jack is producing at an award-worthy level.

    The Warriors are winning because of it.

    Jack is an emotional leader and a key contributor on a 26-15 Warriors squad. Although his name hasn't garnered much hype just yet, Jack could be the lone Warrior to win a post-season award.

    If the former Georgia Tech standout does take home the gold, it would be with good reason.

2. J.R. Smith, New York Knicks

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    Position: Shooting Guard

    Age: 27

    Experience: 9th Season

    2012-13 Season Averages

    16.12 PER, 33.7 MPG, 16.7 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 2.9 APG, 1.4 SPG


    J.R. Smith has been an offensive dynamo and a defensive weapon for the New York Knicks in 2012-13.

    For the season, Smith is averaging 16.7 points, 5.0 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.4 steals per game.

    He also ranks second by position in double-doubles and rebounds per game. Smith has also scored at least 20 points in eight of his past 14 games.

    Not only is Smith's Sixth Man of the Year campaign gaining traction, but talks of his status as a potential All-Star are, as well (via The New York Post).

    The icing on the cake for Smith is his uncanny ability to step up when the game is on the line. For evidence, check Smith's two game-winning buzzer-beaters.

    Point and case.

    Although the following player offers stiff competition, Smith should be a front-runner for Sixth Man of the Year as long as the Knicks are winning games.

    At 25-14, the NYK appear poised to do just that.

1. Jamal Crawford, Los Angeles Clippers

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    Position: Guard

    Age: 32

    Experience: 13th Season

    2012-13 Season Averages

    16.72 PER, 16.6 PPG, 2.4 APG, 1.7 RPG, 1.1 SPG


    There is little doubt about this one.

    Jamal Crawford has been a leader on a 32-11 Los Angeles Clippers squad. If you don't believe it, just ask the experts.

    Golden State Warriors head coach Mark Jackson had the following to say (via

    “Jamal Crawford, the guy is having an impact every single night,” [Golden State Warriors head coach Mark] Jackson said prior to the Warriors’ meeting with the Clippers at Oracle Arena on Jan. 2. “Everything that the Clippers have been able to accomplish this year, Jamal Crawford is right in the middle."

    No arguments from our end.

    Crawford is presently averaging 16.6 points per game. He's doing so on 37.1 percent shooting from beyond the arc.

    The last time Crawford shot this well from distance was 2010—the year he won the Sixth Man of the Year award.

    Kevin McHale, Ricky Pierce and Detlef Schrempf are the only players to win the award twice. Will Crawford join them in 2013?

    After the first half of the 2012-13 NBA regular season, It certainly looks like that way.

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