Howard wins NBA defensive honor again

April 18, 2011 at 2:55 PM
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NEW YORK, April 18 (UPI) -- Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard was named the NBA Defensive Player of the Year for the third year in a row Monday.

He is the first player to accomplish that feat. Dikembe Mutombo and Ben Wallace each won the award four times, but neither did it three times consecutively.

Howard received 585 points, including 114 first-place votes, from a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters. Only five other players received first-place votes.

Kevin Garnett of Boston was second with 77 points and Tyson Chandler of Dallas was third with 70 points.

Howard, a seventh-year veteran, finished second in the league with 14.1 rebounds per game and fourth in blocks with 2.38 per contest. The Magic gave up 93.5 points per game, fourth-best in the NBA, en route to a 52-30 regular-season record and the fourth seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs.

Howard also led the league with 66 double-doubles, including six 20-point, 20-rebound games. He recorded at least 1,000 rebounds and 100 blocked shots for the sixth straight year.

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