With the NBA playoffs line upset, the two weeks in the bubble have had surprising performances from all teams and their list of star players.
The NBA said on Tuesday that it will name both a bubble MVP and an All-Bubble team, voted on by the media and here is our pick of the NBA bubble awards.
Rookie of the Bubble – Michael Porter Jr.
With Bol Bol having a good run in the scrimmage games, it was Michael Porter Jr. who massively impressed in the NBA bubble seeding games. The 2018 NBA draft pick has averaged 22 points, 8.6 rebounds while having a shooting accuracy of 55.1%. He leads the line in rookies averaging atleast 20 PPG after the restart.
Michael Porter Jr. had 30 points and 15 boards today after going for 37 and 12 on Monday.
His 67 points over that 2-game span are the most by a Nuggets rookie in franchise history.
He is the first rookie with consecutive 30-point, 10-rebound games since Blake Griffin in 2011. pic.twitter.com/m1qAhqDS7G
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) August 5, 2020
The Bubble MVP – Damian Lillard
Damian Lillard has undoubtedly been the standout player in Orlando. He became just the 12th player in NBA history to produce back-to-back 50-point games on Tuesday and equalled Wilt Chamberlain’s record of scoring 60+ points thrice in the same season. Lillard scored 154 points in his last 3 games.
The Blazers star has averaged 37.0 points, 4.4 rebounds, 9.3 assists per game. Lillard has single-handedly helped the Blazers end the seeding games with a 6-2 record and finish as the 8th seed and give them a good chance to face the Lakers in the playoffs first round.
Damian Lillard's scoring totals in the Blazers last three games:
51, 61, 42.
His 154 points are the most any player has scored in their final three games of a season.
He is also the first player in NBA history to end the regular season with 3 straight 40-point games. pic.twitter.com/SPIdWKPN2x
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) August 14, 2020
Defensive Player of the Bubble – Fred VanVleet
He’s averaging 19.4 points while shooting 43.3 % from the 3 point line. Offensively, he has impressed with 6.8 assists per game as well.
Told you @FredVanVleet layup package is elite pic.twitter.com/6s1JiKRJcb
— Toronto Raptors (@Raptors) August 6, 2020
The Raptors clinched 2nd seed and now avoid the Milwaukee Bucks and start their postseason versus the Brooklyn Nets. Regardless of how the season plays out, VanVleet has become a crucial player in the Raptors’ team. With the likes of Pascal Siakim and Marc Gasol, they’ve become one of the best defences this season.
Coach of the Bubble – Monty Williams
The coaching award of the bubble has to go to the man who has led the Suns to invincibility in the bubble and narrowly took them to playoff contention despite having a very slim chance.
They trailed Memphis Grizzlies by as many as six games and narrowed the gap and almost managed to edge the Blazers out of the play-in series, but the Blazers beat the Nets on Thursday to knock the Suns out.
Williams’ management of players like Cam Johnson and Dario Saric brought the best out of the duo in the bubble. Saric averaged 14.6 points, 7.9 rebounds and 1.7 assists per game on 57/50/93 shooting.
NBA Bubble All-Star Team
Damian Lillard, Portland Trailblazers
Devin Booker, Phoenix Suns
James Harden, Houston Rockets
Gary Trent Jr., Portland TrailBlazers
T.J. Warren, Indiana Pacers
Devin Booker over Paul George for the game-winner 🤯😱
— The Association on FOX (@TheAssociation) August 4, 2020
James Harden 😯😯#jamesharden #HoustonRockets pic.twitter.com/zJqdmFOdaK
— AllBasketb0ll (@allbasketb0ll) August 7, 2020
[Stylized] TJ Warren highlights in the Pacers win against the Lakers.#wholenewgame #tjwarren @TonyWarrenJr
The Pacers TJ Warren has become a FORCE in the NBA Bubble. #pacers#nba #lakers#lebron pic.twitter.com/DLd4wly7Xs
— ToonySports (@toonysports) August 9, 2020
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