Ben Golliver of Sports Illustrated's The Vertical handed out his NBA midseason awards, and Utah Jazz big man Rudy Gobert was the consensus pick for Defensive Player of the Year.
Golliver also named Gobert the darkhorse to watch saying, "Here’s one where SI’s internal consensus selection of Gobert probably doesn’t match the actual consensus, which almost certainly would go to San Antonio’s Kawhi Leonard (the 2015 and 2016 DPOY) or Golden State’s Draymond Green (the 2015 and 2016 DPOY runner-up)."
Golliver then turned his attention to what Gobert has done for the Jazz on the floor, saying "The real meat of Gobert’s DPOY argument is similar to Harden’s MVP argument over Durant: he’s done as much (or more) with significantly less help than his competition. Whereas both Green and Leonard play on deep, experienced and stable teams, Gobert has carried an up-and-coming Jazz team into the playoff picture for the first time since 2012 despite line-up absences at virtually every position around him."
Kyle Collinsworth dubbed Air Mormon
Former BYU guard Kyle Collinsworth was given a new nickname on Wednesday night by the Texas Legends' Twitter page.
The page showed a video of Collinsworth throwing down a big left-handed dunk with the hashtag, #AIRMORMON.
Gonzaga vs. BYU prediction
Jeff Bartl of Campus Insiders previewed the game between the BYU Cougars and the Gonzaga Bulldogs set for Thursday night.
After analyzing the match-up, he said the Cougars could win if, "Mika has the night of his life. The 6-foot-10 sophomore big man has 12 games of at least 20 points and is shooting 54.8 percent from the floor. He’ll get a tough test going up against Karnowski, but if Mika can keep the Cougars close and the home crowd engaged, they might have a chance to pull off the upset."
Bartl then looked at the matchup to watch before leaving a final prediction, saying, "BYU is going to come out fired up against the nation’s No. 1 team. Mika and Emery will get some points early and give the Cougars a lead. But Williams-Goss will settle the Bulldogs down and guide them back, taking over and helping Gonzaga pull out the road victory."