Los Angeles Clippers shooting guard Jamal Crawford has officially won the NBA Sixth Man of the Year award following one of the most productive seasons of his career.
CSN Houston's Adam Wexler provides the NBA Communications' announcement, in addition to the final order of voting:
RT @NBAPR: LAC's Jamal Crawford Wins 2013-14 Kia NBA Sixth Man Award - led all reserves w/ 18.6 ppg (tallied 57-of-125 1st place votes)— AdamWexlerCSN (@awexler) May 8, 2014
NBA 6th man voting: Jamal Crawford, Taj Gibson, Ginobili, Markieff Morris, Reggie Jackson. No Rockets players received votes.— AdamWexlerCSN (@awexler) May 8, 2014
ESPN NBA reporter Marc Stein first broke the news on April 30:
Story going online now: ESPN has learned that Clippers G Jamal Crawford is the NBA's Sixth Man Award winner for second time in his career— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) April 30, 2014
Stein adds that the award ceremony has been put on hold for now:
The 34-year-old took home the award for the first time as a member of the Atlanta Hawks in 2009-10, when he averaged 18.0 points, 2.5 rebounds and 3.0 assists in 31.1 minutes per game.
Basketball Insiders' Alex Kennedy puts Crawford's award-winning performance into historical perspective:
Jamal Crawford is the fourth two-time Sixth Man of the Year award winner in NBA history, joining Kevin McHale, Ricky Pierce, Detlef Schrempf— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) April 30, 2014
Zach Harper of CBS Sports had more on the voting and his choice for the award:
Look, I think Taj Gibson should have been Sixth Man of the Year, but let’s not be all internet-y and pretend this is an injustice.— Zach Harper (@talkhoops) April 30, 2014
In 2013-14, Crawford averaged 18.6 points, 2.3 rebounds and 3.2 assists in 30.3 minutes per game, which are very similar numbers to what he produced when he last won the award. He appeared in only 69 regular-season games because of a nagging left calf injury and started 24 of those contests. Among Clippers players, only All-Stars Blake Griffin and Chris Paul averaged higher scoring figures than Crawford.
Despite the impressive production, Crawford's shooting percentages were actually down from 2012-13. The veteran shot just 41.6 percent from the field and 36.1 percent from beyond the arc.
But Crawford's impact was unquestionable as the Clippers ranked tops in the league in scoring this past season and won a franchise-record 57 games.
Crawford is L.A.'s third-leading scorer this postseason despite seeing his minutes shrink. One specific noteworthy performance of this postseason came in the pivotal Game 5 at Staples Center when he scored 19 points in 26 minutes off the bench to help propel the Clippers to a 3-2 series lead over the Golden State Warriors.
Prior to the Game 4 loss to Golden State, Crawford credited head coach Doc Rivers for his improved defense, via Fox Sports' Michael Martinez:
That's a credit to him and his staff. It's to the point now where I'm mad if I'm in the wrong position or I'm mad if I get scored on. I don't want to let the team down. I take pride in defense now. He and his staff have done something that's never really clicked with me, and that's showing how important defense is.
Crawford is sure to continue to play a key role for L.A. as the Clippers look to advance past the Oklahoma City Thunder in the second round of the playoffs. His production off the bench is critical to keeping the Clippers offense on track and will be especially crucial on the road.
If he can continue to spark L.A.'s second unit and keep knocking in multiple threes, the Clippers will have a great chance of advancing to the Western Conference Finals for the first time in franchise history.
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