On a nightly basis, Phoenix Suns forward Grant Hill was asked to guard the best opposing player on the court. This usually included the likes of potential MVPs Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Derrick Rose and Kevin Durant.
Hill received recognition for his consistent defensive effort on Monday, finishing 7th in the NBA Defensive Player of the Year award voting.
“I don’t think anybody out there has that much versatility that they can do what he did,” said Suns coach Alvin Gentry last week. “You go back and look and a ton of those guys never had their scoring average against him.”
Hill was one of six players in the award voting to receive a first place vote. Despite posting his highest scoring average as a member of the Suns (13.2 points), his presence was better felt on the defensive side of the court.
“He still has a lot in the tank,” Gentry said. “I think we ask him to do probably more than any one person in the NBA asks a guy to do defensively.”
Dwight Howard won the 2010-11 title for the third consecutive time, finishing with 114 first place votes.