“How many guys can make Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant work like that?!”: Suns’ Mikal Bridges shoots up in odds for DPOY after stellar performances against Nets and Warriors
|Thu Dec 02 2021
Looks like it will go down to the wire between Rudy Gobert and Mikal Bridges to win the best defender award. The Suns’ guard is catching up with the 3-time DPOY
The Defensive Player of the Year award is one of the most sought-after awards of the season in the NBA. Although it’s an individual honor, it surely depends on the impact your defense is having on your team’s result.
So it somehow depends on your team’s overall defense as nobody wins a DPOY award in a non Playoff team.
It is also one of the most eyebrow-raising awards. The plays are so much different in the regular season and playoffs that the DPOY of that very season finds himself struggling against the team he was dominating throughout the season.
It’s rare for the guards to win this award, only six times in 39 years to be precise. Five of those 6 came in the first six years of the introduction of the award. The last guard to win it was Gary Payton, 25 years ago.
Big men and forwards generally dominate this category of NBA’s Yearly honors. This year as well the bigs are leading the race, but there is a guard whose efforts are getting recognized.
Mikal Bridges closing down the gap between him Big men in the race
It has been the same this season as well. All the teams have played more than a quarter of the regular season and the 3-time DPOY, Rudy Gobert of the Utah Jazz has been leading the race since the start of the season.
Rudy Gobert This Season
✅Most total shots defended
✅Lowest eFG% allowed as closest defender pic.twitter.com/PcsGRdlcg6
— Kirk Goldsberry (@kirkgoldsberry) November 29, 2021
Draymond Green has taken over the Jazz Big man and is leading the race again with the best odds to win.
Golden State Warriors’ Draymond Green is having another monster season on the defensive end. He’s the frontrunner for DPOY, and he might be the best defender of this era.#NBA75 #DubNationhttps://t.co/zQpirzVcuu
— Rafael Freire (@RafaHoops) December 1, 2021
But there’s a guy who can defend all the positions on the court and is even capable of guarding the unguardable Stephen Curry. The 6’7 shooting guard/small forward of the Suns, Mikal Bridges put up a clinic against the Warriors guard who was wreaking havoc since the start of the 2021-22 season.
— Logan (@phxlogan) December 2, 2021
NBA Twitter thinks Bridges should be up in the conversation of DPOY
Not only he has troubled the current MVP race leader, Stephen Curry, but he has also been locking up the best players of every team the Suns have faced thus far. Therefore Twitter users are making case for the guy, even if the media isn’t.
Mikal Bridges defensive assignments the last two games:
— evan (Mikal DPOY) (@evxz17) December 1, 2021
Give Bridges DPOY, I’ve seen enough
— Matt Brooks (@MattBrooksNBA) December 1, 2021
Gn Suns fam✊ pic.twitter.com/iLVzosHHqp
— (@BridgesDPOY) December 1, 2021
Mikal Bridges has gone from DPOY dark-horse contender to favorite with tonight’s performance.
— Evan Sidery (@esidery) December 1, 2021
Mikal Bridges successfully guarded Kevin Durant and Steph Curry in consecutive games. And he was *wildly* successful against the latter.
Mikal Bridges for DPOY isn’t a cute meme anymore. He’s very much at that level.
— Max (@maxmcc11) December 1, 2021
He’s even making the Slim Reaper work for his buckets.
Mikal Bridges: 21/22 DPOY Campaign
How many guys making KD work like that from the mid post? pic.twitter.com/duCfrujF3l
— David Kevin (@theIVpointplay) November 28, 2021
The odds are getting better for the 25-year old after his performance against the Warriors.
The odds for Mikal Bridges DPOY dropped from +12,000, where they first posted, to +3500 after last night.
— Mike Vigil (@protectedpick) December 1, 2021
The race for all the individual awards in the NBA this season is going to get pretty close, but whoever wins the DPOY will have the most pressure to replicate their performance in the post-season where teams play much different and better basketball.