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Utah Jazz's Gordon Hayward receives votes for NBA's most improved player

Jazz forward Gordon Hayward received one second-place vote and a third-place vote for the NBA's 2011-12 most improved player, the NBA announced Friday.

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Orlando's Ryan Anderson won the award. Milwuakee's Ersan Ilyasova finished second, while Minnesota's Nikola Pekovic was third.

Hayward, 22, averaged 11.8 points, 3.5 rebounds and 3.1 assists during his second season with Utah. He shot 45.6 percent from the field and 34.6 percent behind the 3-point line.

After struggling through an inconsistent January, Hayward excelled during the final two months of a lockout-shortened season. He averaged 16.1 points while shooting 50.7 percent from the floor and 49 percent beyond the arc in 13 April games. Hayward also worked his way back into the starting lineup after being moved to the bench March 5.

Brian T. Smith

Twitter: @tribjazz

Press release:

NEW YORK – Ryan Anderson of the Orlando Magic is the winner of the 2011-12 Kia NBA Most Improved Player Award, the NBA announced today. The annual award is presented to a player who has made a significant improvement from the previous season.

Anderson received 260 of a possible 605 points, including 33 first-place votes, from a panel of 121 sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada. Ersan Ilyasova of the Milwaukee Bucks (159 points, 21 first-place votes) and Nikola Pekovic of the Minnesota Timberwolves (104 points, 10 first-place votes) finished second and third, respectively. Players were awarded five points for each first-place vote, three points for each second-place vote and one point for each third place vote received.

Anderson established career highs in scoring (16.1 ppg), rebounds (7.7 rpg), field goal percentage (.439) and free throw percentage. He also paced the league and established personal bests in three-pointers made (166) and attempted (422). He increased his scoring from the previous season by 5.5 ppg and his rebounds by 2.2 rpg. Orlando averaged 107.5 points per 100 possessions with Anderson on the court, compared to 94.1 points with the 6-10 forward on the bench.

As part of its support of the Most Improved Player Award, Kia Motors America will donate a new Kia Sorento CUV on behalf of Anderson to the Boys and Girls Club of Central Florida. Kia Motors will present a brand new Sorento to the charity of choice of each of five 2011-12 year-end award winners as part of the "The Kia NBA Performance Awards." Following this season, Kia Motors will have donated a total of 21 new vehicles to charitable organizations since its support of the NBA’s prestigious year-end honors began with the 2007-2008 season.

The 2011-12 Kia NBA Most Improved Player Award is part of a series of on-court performance awards called "The Kia NBA Performance Awards." The series, currently in its fifth season, is a significant part of the multiyear marketing partnership between Kia Motors America and the NBA, and also includes the Defensive Player, Sixth Man, Most Valuable Player of the Year Awards, and this year for the first time, Rookie of the Year. It also includes the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month which are awarded during the regular season. For more information on the "The Kia NBA Performance Awards" visit www.NBA.com/performanceawards.

Attached are the 2011-12 voting results for the Kia NBA Most Improved Player of the Year Award winners. The balloting was tabulated by the independent accounting firm of Ernst & Young LLP.

2011-12 KIA NBA MOST IMPROVED PLAYER AWARD

1st Place (5 Pts) 2nd Place (3 Pts) 3rd Place (1 pts) Total

Ryan Anderson 33 27 14 260

Ersan Ilyasova 21 15 9 159

Nikola Pekovic 10 15 9 104

Greg Monroe 10 9 19 96

Andrew Bynum 13 8 7 96

Jeremy Lin 10 8 17 91

Goran Dragic 4 8 10 54

Avery Bradley 4 4 4 36

Danny Green 3 3 3 27

Jeff Teague 1 5 7 27

Serge Ibaka 2 2 0 16

Ty Lawson 1 3 2 16

Paul George 2 1 0 13

Steve Novak 1 2 1 12

DeMarcus Cousins 0 2 5 11

Kevin Love 1 0 3 8

Roy Hibbert 0 1 4 7

James Harden 0 2 1 7

Gerald Henderson 1 0 1 6

Marcin Gortat 1 0 1 6

Kyle Lowry 1 0 0 5

Andrew Bogut 1 0 0 5

Marc Gasol 1 0 0 5

Gordon Hayward 0 1 1 4

Arron Afflalo 0 1 0 3

C.J. Watson 0 1 0 3

Brandan Wright 0 1 0 3

Tony Parker 0 1 0 3

Jarrett Jack 0 0 1 1

Marreese Speights 0 0 1 1

Following is the all-time list of winners:

ALL-TIME KIA NBA MOST IMPROVED PLAYER AWARD

1985-86 Alvin Robertson, San Antonio

1986-87 Dale Ellis, Seattle

1987-88 Kevin Duckworth, Portland

1988-89 Kevin Johnson, Phoenix

1989-90 Rony Seikaly, Miami

1990-91 Scott Skiles, Orlando

1991-92 Pervis Ellison, Washington

1992-93 Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf, Denver

1993-94 Don MacLean, Washington

1994-95 Dana Barros, Philadelphia

1995-96 Gheorghe Muresan, Washington

1996-97 Isaac Austin, Miami

1997-98 Alan Henderson, Atlanta

1998-99 Darrell Armstrong, Orlando

1999-00 Jalen Rose, Indiana

2000-01 Tracy McGrady, Orlando

2001-02 Jermaine O’Neal, Indiana

2002-03 Gilbert Arenas, Golden State

2003-04 Zach Randolph, Portland

2004-05 *Bobby Simmons, L.A. Clippers

2005-06 Boris Diaw, Phoenix

2006-07 Monta Ellis, Golden State

2007-08 Hedo Turkoglu, Orlando

2008-09 Danny Granger, Indiana

2009-10 *Aaron Brooks, Houston

2010-11 Kevin Love, Minnesota

2011-12 Ryan Anderson, Orlando

*NBA Development League Experience



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