Beginning in 2023, the NBA’s Most Valuable Player will receive the Michael Jordan trophy, named after the current Hornets owner and former Bulls guard who received five MVP awards during his time as a player, the league announced today in a press release.
The NBA’s Most Valuable Player previously received the Maurice Podoloff Trophy. However, as we noted last week, that trophy will now be awarded to the team that finishes the regular season with the NBA’s best record.
The new MVP trophy is part of the NBA’s wider rebranding of its major awards. The league also announced the following changes:
- The Defensive Player of the Year will receive the Hakeem Olajuwon trophy in honor of the former Rockets center who won a pair of DPOY awards and was named to nine All-Defensive teams.
- The Rookie of the Year will receive the Wilt Chamberlain trophy in honor of the Hall-of-Famer who led the league with 37.6 points and 27.0 rebounds per game as a rookie for the Philadelphia Warriors in 1959/60.
- The Sixth Man of the Year will receive the John Havlicek trophy in honor of the Celtics legend who came off the bench for the first seven years of his career and made four All-Star teams during that time.
- The Most Improved Player will receive the George Mikan trophy in honor of the late Hall-of-Famer who played from 1948-56. The NBA notes in its press release that “a layup and footwork exercise known as the ‘Mikan Drill’ has been used for decades by players at all levels to improve their game.”
The NBA also announced the introduction of the Clutch Player of the Year award — the winner will receive the Jerry West trophy, named after the former NBA star who is currently an executive board member for the Clippers and was nicknamed “Mr. Clutch” by Lakers broadcaster Chick Hearn.
According to the NBA, the new award will “honor the NBA player who best comes through for his teammates in the clutch.” Like the other major awards, it will be voted on by a media panel, though the nominations will be provided by NBA head coaches.
“Our new collection of trophies celebrates some of the greatest and most impactful players in the history of the NBA,” commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement. “As we recognize the league’s top performers each season, we also pay tribute to the legends who embody these prestigious awards.”
Images of the new trophies can all be viewed within the NBA’s press release.
44 thoughts on “NBA Rebrands Major End-Of-Season Awards”
How exactly was the DPOY not named after Ben Wallace? Seriously? The guy who made the Hall of Fame on defensive talent alone and had a five year run with four DPOY awards? All the others at least make sense. Hakeem was a godly player, but Wallace was objectively a better defender.
Hakeem is clearly the best defensive player of all time. He was more versatile on defense than Big Ben, he was quicker and, what is more important IMO, his defensive skillset will translate better in any era.
Yeah, this is true. Hakeem was a beast. They got it right.
Hakeem might have been the best defensive player in your time BUT Bill Russell is the best Defensive player of my time
“Hakeem is clearly the best defensive player of all time.”
Bill didn’t face Shaq.
Aside from Wilt, Bill played against centers that are small forwards today. Heck, Dave Cowens wouldn’t even be in the NBA today. Bill was certainly the best during his ‘era,’ but IMHO HO is the right call.
Dream is still all time leading blocks and 9th all time in steals(a stat usually dominated by guards&wings).
Not to mention the players he had to defend. He is the best overall defender of all time, some could get consideration but there’s no argument.
The list of centers HO went up against…Shaq, Ewing, Mourning, Robinson, Jabbar, and let’s not forget Mark Eaton.
Russell already has the finals MVP award named for him, which at least to me is more fitting for Russell. DPOY is a very fitting honor for Hakeem, he was a beast defensively, not only did he block shots but most of those blocks would result in turnovers as simply blocked it and didn’t try to send it into the 5th row.
Wallace was a fine defensive player. Chamberlain and Russell were both significantly better, Wilt after they told him it wasn’t scoring, or rebounding, or passing that mattered but rather defense. Mutombo, Thurmond, Walton, Artis Gilmore were all better than Wallace. Arguably Tim Duncan was better.
Olajuwon is a fine choice.
I’d put Duncan right behind HO. His technical and fundamental skills with those arms were near impossible to score on up close. Even Shaq had problems against him.
So that’s where the “Miken Drill” came from. Interesting
Nba doesn’t have man of the year award like the NFL does?
It’s probably also where the “Mikan Drill” comes from.
I don’t have any major problems with the names but it feels like the missed the boat by not having the DPOY as the Ben Wallace award and the 6th man as the Jamal Crawford award
I would agree, though Hakeem and Havlicek are more well-known which is probably why the awards are named after them.
More well known and way better.
Jamal Crawford is not even a hall of famer. I love him, but if you’re naming an award and can choose from any player in NBA history, I don’t think Jamal Crawford would be on the list of your top 20 choices.
Bobby Jackson award
6th man = Manu. And he’s an HOF.
Manu is a great choice.
They should have the Shaquille O’Neal award for man of the year. I love his philanthropy and enormous heart.
His heart must be enormous to keep those 400 lbs. of flesh and lard alive.
This is gimmicky and comes off as a cheap parlour trick, or cheesy like the fair carnie games. Wilt is the MVP, and it should be named after him. He was a professional before playing in the NBA. Rookie?? It should be named after someone who didn’t play professional basketball before entering the NBA, and 25 years old. Cheese city
Dude was a by the book rookie. Pretty much every league’s RoY rules regard being a rookie in said league.
Its more fitting for Wilt’s name to be on the MVP trophy. With Wilt on your team, and no one else you were in the finals every season. Best player, most talented, skilled, athletic, physical, and single most valuable player to ever play. Larry Bird is a good name for the rookie award. He should have one of these named after him, he was shafted.
They should have a “LeBron James Trophy” for the most lachrymose baby among NBA players.
Most tears caused to envious fans
Really hope that after Lebron retires, he’ll be celebrated and loved like he deserves.
They missed the ” Chris Paul award” for the most floppy and dirty player award
It’s because of his acting that he landed those commercials. He knows what he was doing.
60% white 40% black…maybe rename them in 10-15 years
Most technical fouls = “The Metta World Peace Award.”
That should be called the Sheed award.
this is dumb
Some people think this might be cheesy but I love the idea future players can show some respect to the players who’s award they will win. Maybe even do a little homework to see who made the league the great league it is going forward
What about the Dennis Rodman/Draymond Green Sportsmanship award?
NBA obviously doesn’t put a lot of thought into this type of thing (other than not to offend anyone), so no reason for me to.
Podoloff is dead, so I guess he can be demoted without objection. Still has any other league taken the name of its founding commissioner off a trophy? Then again, he was probably the last commissioner to care about the regular season, so maybe there’s a fit there.
Unfortunately, Bill Russell, the Big O and Bird already had awards hastily named after them, which leaves them out here. Too bad that Russell and O never won the awards named after them. Even without forethought, you’d think it would be hard to even find an award that Russell never won, yet the NBA managed to find it and picked that one to name after him.
So Hakeem is the beneficiary I guess. Since, yes, Russell is the greatest defensive player in history, and, no, it’s not debatable or close. His skills were likely the best too, but that’s an aside. Greatness is about impact, and, yeah, the guy who invented the C position from a defensive standpoint, and created a template that had basketball people scouring the globe for people fitting the profile. That’s likely the only reason Hakeem ever made it to the US.
Branding is hard, rebranding is usually stupid, and rebranding on the fly, is annoying stupid. But I guess it all gets redone in another 10 years or so anyway.
Podoloff now has the trophy for best regular season record, chill
I noted that in my post. Still a comically feeble effort by a league. I’m amused, not upset.