Brad Stevens and Jayson Tatum may not win their respective year-end awards, but they were still honored on Wednesday as finalists. Snyder deserves a lot of credit for leading the Jazz to a surprising 48-34 record and the No. 5 seed in the Western Conference.
But an injury five minutes into the first game ended Gordon Hayward's season, moving Tatum up a notch on the team's pecking order.
Stevens led the Celtics to a 55-27 record in his fifth season as head coach. Thrust into a more prominent role following Hayward's broken leg, the No. 3 overall pick in last year's draft responded by averaging 13.9 points a game while shooting.434 on 3-pointers. While it doesn't matter for the voting, Tatum has upped his game in the playoffs, averaging 18.1 points over Boston's 14 games.
Sixers Joel Embiid has been named a finalist for Defensive Player of the year. Celtics forward Al Horford is a disappointing omission from that category.
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