MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Center Marc Gasol of Memphis has won his first NBA Defensive Player of the Year award after anchoring the league’s stingiest defense.
The NBA announced Wednesday that Gasol received 212 points and 30 first-place votes to edge Miami’s LeBron James, who had 149 points and 18 first-place votes.
Gasol, a 7-foot-1 Spaniard, averaged 1.7 blocks and 1.0 steals for a Memphis defense that allowed a league-best 88.7 points per game.
Oklahoma City’s Serge Ibaka was third with 122 points and 14 first-place votes. The 28-year-old Gasol becomes the first Grizzlies player to earn defensive player honors.