NBA Notes: Russell Westbrook Wins League's MVP Award

NEW YORK -- Russell Westbrook has been voted NBA MVP after setting a record with 42 triple-doubles last season.

Westbrook's victory ended the first NBA Awards show, which included two wins apiece for the Houston Rockets and Milwaukee Bucks.

Philadelphia 76ers

Complete coverage of the Philadelphia 76ers and their rivals in the NBA from NBC Sports Philadelphia.

Former Saint Joe's Standout, NBA All-Star Jameer Nelson Hired by 76ers, Source Says

Doc Rivers Wants the Sixers Playing Faster; Is That a Reasonable Goal?

Westbrook joined Oscar Robertson as the only players to average a triple-double for the season, and he broke Robertson's single-season record set when he had 41 triple-doubles in 1961-62.

The point guard beat out Houston's James Harden and San Antonio's Kawhi Leonard to succeed Stephen Curry, who had won the past two MVP awards.

Earlier, Milwaukee's Malcolm Brogdon became the first player not picked in the first round to win NBA Rookie of the Year in the common draft era.

Brogdon was the No. 36 overall selection out of Virginia. The common draft era began in 1966.

"I think it's an example for guys that are told they are too short, they are not athletic enough, they are not real point guards, they are not real shooting guards," Brogdon said. "I just think it's an important message for people to see, and it can be done. It just takes a lot."

Teammate Giannis Antetokounmpo won the Most Improved Player award.

Houston coach Mike D'Antoni won his second Coach of the Year award, and Eric Gordon was Sixth Man of the Year after setting a record for most 3-pointers off the bench in his first season as a reserve.

The NBA formerly gave out its individual awards at various points throughout the postseason before switching to the awards show this season and presenting them all at once in front of the league's top players and stars from the entertainment world.

Cavaliers: Billups still undecided on front-office job
CLEVELAND -- Chauncey Billups isn't sure if it's time to jump back into the NBA.

Nearly a week after first meeting with Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert, Billups has not yet decided whether to join Cleveland's front office, a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press on Monday.

Billups is weighing several factors and remains unsure if he wants to lead the Cavaliers' basketball operations, according to the person who spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the talks.

Billups met twice last week with Gilbert, who is also looking for a new general manager after parting ways with David Griffin. The sides were unable to negotiate a contract extension following Cleveland's third straight trip to the Finals. The person says there's no timetable on a decision.

A five-time All-Star, Billups, who has no executive experience, would have to uproot his family in Denver to take the job. He also has to consider other factors, including the possibility that LeBron James could leave as a free agent after next season.

Billups has known Gilbert for years, but he may be hesitant to work for a passionate-but-demanding owner who has had four GMs in 12 years and couldn't work things out with Griffin despite an unprecedented string of success.

Billups is believed to be the only candidate so far to meet with Gilbert (see full story).

Nets: Russell seeks smooth start in Brooklyn
NEW YORK -- D'Angelo Russell wasn't only traded, he was insulted on the way out the door.

After the Los Angeles Lakers selected Lonzo Ball with the No. 2 pick in the NBA draft, team President Magic Johnson said Russell played well but stressed that he needed a leader as his point guard. Given that Johnson is one of the greatest ever to play the position, the sting might have really hurt Russell.

But his turbulent time in Los Angeles is over, so the only voices Russell are listening to are in Brooklyn.

"It's good to be here. I can't really control that, what they say," Russell said Monday. "I'm gone. It's the past. I'm here now. It's irrelevant, honestly."

The Nets introduced Russell and center Timofey Mozgov in a news conference at their training facility, having acquired the pair in the deal last week that sent center Brook Lopez and a draft pick to Los Angeles.

Russell is just 21 and himself was the No. 2 pick just two years ago, the kind of player who isn't usually available via trade. But the Lakers needed to make room for Ball, and the Nets are in desperate need of talent after finishing with the worst record in the NBA.

"Looking at what the Lakers were dealing with, we're always in that talent-acquisition mode here," general manager Sean Marks said. "We will be for a while, but adding a player -- specifically D'Angelo being 21 -- we could've easily drafted somebody who was a year older than D'Angelo" (see full story).

Copyright CSNPhily
Contact Us