A day after Jazz center Rudy Gobert was named to the league’s All-Defensive first team, Gobert got a more all-encompassing accolade on Thursday: he was named to the All-NBA third team.
Gobert earned 75 out of a potential 100 votes in order to secure a place on one of the three teams ahead of Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns (who earned just 20 votes) and Nikola Vucevic (with four votes). Denver’s Nikola Jokic won first-team honors with a terrific season in Denver, while Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid was selected for the second-team.
Fellow Jazzman Donovan Mitchell earned just four votes for third-team All-NBA guard honors. In the end, Kemba Walker and Russell Westbrook earned those spots, with Washington’s Bradley Beal and Golden State’s Klay Thompson coming up just short. Blake Griffin and LeBron James were named third-team forwards with a wide gap between them and runner-up LaMarcus Aldridge.
For Gobert, it’s his second time on the All-NBA honor rolls, having been selected for the second team in the 2016-17 season. Injuries precluded the big man from receiving the award in 2017-18. But in this season, Gobert earning the league’s dunk record (306, surpassing Dwight Howard’s previous record campaign) complemented his highly-regarded defensive acumen.
It wasn’t just the dunk record, though. Gobert’s totals in points (15.9), rebounds (12.9) and assists (2.0) per game were all career highs, while he led the NBA in field-goal percentage. While the cut-offs are arbitrary, he was the first player since Wilt Chamberlain in 1966-67 to total over 1,200 points, 1,000 rebounds, while also shooting over 65%.
MVP finalists James Harden, Giannis Antetokounmpo, and Paul George highlight the All-NBA first team, joined by Jokic and Steph Curry. Weber State graduate Damian Lillard leads the second team, along with Embiid, Kevin Durant, Kawhi Leonard, and Kyrie Irving.