Rudy Gobert Wins Third DPOY Award in Four Seasons

Rudy Gobert Utah Jazz Background

  • Rudy Gobert has won his third Defensive Player of the Year award.
  • Utah’s Stifle Tower led the league in blocks while ranking second in rebounding.
  • The Jazz have the second-best odds to win the 2021 NBA championship at +300.

The Utah Jazz just bagged another award.

After Jordan Clarkson was named as the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year two weeks ago, Jazz center Rudy Gobert has been awarded as the league’s Defensive Player of the Year.

The Jazz surprised an unsuspecting Gobert by putting the DPOY trophy at his locker:

This is the third time that Gobert has won the award. He won back to back Defensive Player of the Year awards in 2018 and 2019 before Giannis Antetokounmpo took the award from him last season. This year, Gobert was the landslide winner.

The Stifle Tower earned 84 out of 100 first-place votes and finished the balloting with 464 points. Philadelphia 76ers’ guard Ben Simmons came in second with 15 first place votes and 287 total points while the Golden State Warriors’ Draymond Green finished third with 76 total points.

3 DPOY Trophies

With three Defensive Player of the Year trophies, Gobert joins Dikembe Mutombo, Ben Wallace, and Dwight Howard, as the only players in the history of the NBA to win the award three times. Mutombo and Wallace are the only player to win the award more than three-times. With Gobert just reaching his prime, there’s a good chance he will challenge that record.

Gobert averaged 14.3 points, 13.5 rebounds, and 2.7 blocks per game. He led the league in blocks while ranking 2nd to Clint Capela in rebounding. With Gobert at the center of their defense, the Jazz ranked third in the league in defensive rating while also finishing with the NBA’s 4th ranked offense. Utah was the only team to finish in the Top 5 in both offense and defense while their net rating of 9 point per 100 possessions was the best in the league during the regular season.

Gobert at Work in Game 1

In Game 1 against the Clippers, Gobert showed why he deserves this year’s DPOY award. The Clippers were 12-27 (44.4%) as a team with Gobert was the primary defender. Paul George ws 2-7 (28.6%) with Gobert guarding him while Marcus Morris Sr. was 2-6 (33.33%) when defended by The Stifle Tower. And yes, don’t forget that game-saving block on Morris at the buzzer.

There’s no question that it was Donovan Mitchell who rallied the Jazz from an early deficit and it was Spida’s 45 point output that stunned the Clippers. However, Gobert was steady all throughout the game as he finished with 10 points, 12 rebounds, and two blocked shots. With Gobert as their defensive anchor, Utah held the Clippers to 42.4% field goal shooting in Game 1.

Utah Jazz Odds

The Jazz are three-point betting favorites at the BetOnline App to win Game 2 on Thursday. Utah is also a slight -148 odds on favorite to take a 2-0 lead on the Clippers and are also a slight -190 betting favorite to win the series. In the larger picture, the Jazz have moved up to second place in the championship odds.

Utah began the 2021 postseason as a +700 to win the 2021 NBA title. But since Donovan Mitchell’s return, they have won five straight playoff games and are now a +300 to win the chip at PointsBet USA. If Mitchell continues to be aggressive offensively and Gobert does his job on defense, this could be the year for the Jazz.

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Shane Acedera / Author

Shane grew up watching the Magic & Bird rivalry but ended up rooting for Detroit's Bad Boys team in the 1990s NBA. He loves to tell sports stories and has been writing about sports since high school. When Shane isn't busy jotting down his thoughts, he's just chillin' at home with his wife Rocelle and their two dogs named Horry and Fisher. He recently added a new family member, adopting a handsome retired K-9 named Ranger.

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