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Utah Jazz's Rudy Gobert wins third Defensive Player of the Year award

Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert (L), shown April 19, 2021, becomes the fourth player in NBA history to win the DPOY award at least three times. File Photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI
Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert (L), shown April 19, 2021, becomes the fourth player in NBA history to win the DPOY award at least three times. File Photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI | License Photo

June 9 (UPI) -- Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert has won the NBA's Defensive Player of the Year award for the third time in his career.

Gobert becomes the fourth player in league history to win the award at least three times, joining Dikembe Mutombo, Ben Wallace and Dwight Howard. Mutombo and Wallace each earned the honor four times, and Howard won three DPOY trophies.

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"It's unbelievable," Gobert said Wednesday after receiving the award for a third time. "When I started basketball as a kid, if somebody would have told me that I was going to be Defensive Player of the Year, I would have never believed them, let alone three times.

"It's hard to put into words the things that you can achieve when you just enjoy what you do, first of all, and when you have a group of people that believes in you and you put the work in every single day. I try to write my own story, try to enjoy my own journey, but just being one of only four guys that have won the award that many times, it's just amazing."

Gobert, who averaged 14.3 points, 13.5 rebounds and a career-best 2.7 blocks per game this season, also captured the award in 2018 and 2019 before Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo won it last year.

The 28-year-old Gobert earned 84 of a possible 100 first-place votes and finished with 464 total points. Philadelphia 76ers guard Ben Simmons received 15 first-place votes and Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green garnered 76 total points to finish second and third, respectively.

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Miami Heat big man Bam Adebayo finished fourth in voting and earned the remaining first-place vote.

NBA Defensive Player of the Year voting results:

1. Rudy Gobert (Utah Jazz) - 464 points

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2. Ben Simmons (Philadelphia 76ers) - 287 points

3. Draymond Green (Golden State Warriors) - 76 points

4. Bam Adebayo (Miami Heat) - 31 points

5. Giannis Antetokounmpo (Milwaukee Bucks) - 12 points

6. Clint Capela (Atlanta Hawks) - 10 points

7. Joel Embiid (Philadelphia 76ers) - 7 points

8. Jrue Holiday (Milwaukee Bucks) - 6 points

9. Myles Turner (Indiana Pacers) - 3 points

10. Jimmy Butler (Miami Heat) - 2 points

11. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (Los Angeles Lakers) - 1 point

12. Matisse Thybulle (Philadelphia 76ers) - 1 point

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