Phoenix Suns’ Mikal Bridges, Cam Johnson named NBA awards finalists
Apr 17, 2022, 3:52 PM | Updated: 4:47 pm
(Photo by Kelsey Grant/Getty Images)
Two Phoenix Suns players and head coach Monty Williams were named finalists for NBA awards on Sunday.
Wing Mikal Bridges is one of three finalists for the Defensive Player of the Year award, forward Cam Johnson is in the running for Sixth Man of the Year and Williams for Coach of the Year.
Both players are finalists for the first time in their respective careers.
Suns guard Devin Booker was not named a finalist for Most Valuable Player, getting beat out by Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo, Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid and Denver Nuggets big Nikola Jokic.
Booker was listed fourth on NBA.com’s most recent MVP ladder.
Bridges started every game during the regular season and continued his ascension as one of the league’s prime wing defenders. The other two finalists for DPOY are Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert and Boston Celtics guard Marcus Smart.
No Suns player has ever won the award.
2021-22 NBA Awards finalists: pic.twitter.com/CmpAs7tquF
— NBA Communications (@NBAPR) April 17, 2022
Johnson scored a career-high 12.5 points per game on 42.5% three-point shooting this season off the bench. He is competing with Miami Heat guard Tyler Herro and Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love for the award.
The most recent Suns player to win Sixth Man of the Year was Leandro Barbosa in 2007.
Williams was named the National Basketball Coaches Association’s Coach of the Year for a second consecutive season last week. He was a finalist for Coach of the Year in 2020-21, but Tom Thibodeau of the New York Knicks won.
Williams is in his third season coaching the Suns, and he helped the franchise win 64 games for the first time to earn the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference. Phoenix finished the regular season fifth in scoring and eighth in points allowed.