SANTA MONICA, Calif. — Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks was named the Most Valuable Player at the NBA Awards on Monday night.

The 24-year-old forward from Greece beat out Paul George of Oklahoma City and James Harden of Houston, who won last year.

Antetokounmpo earned All-NBA first-team honors this season, his sixth with the Bucks. He led the franchise to the best record in the regular season and the Bucks fell two games short of reaching the NBA finals.

He averaged 27.7 points and 12.5 rebounds. Tears rolled down his cheeks as he thanked his teammates during his speech.

Rudy Gobert of the Utah Jazz won Defensive Player of the Year for the second straight season. The 26-year-old center from France beat out Giannis Antetokounmpo of Milwaukee and Paul George of Oklahoma City.

Milwaukee’s Mike Budenholzer won Coach of the Year honors for the second time in his career. He guided the Bucks to a 60-22 record in the regular season in his first year with the franchise, leading them to the Eastern Conference finals, where they lost to eventual NBA champion Toronto.

He earned his first Coach of the Year trophy with Atlanta in 2015.

Budenholzer beat out Denver’s Mike Malone and Doc Rivers of the Los Angeles Clippers.

Luka Doncic of the Dallas Mavericks won Rookie of the Year.

The 20-year-old small forward from Slovenia accepted his trophy from RJ Barrett, who went to the New York Knicks as the No. 3 pick in the NBA draft last week. Doncic was the No. 3 pick last year.

The other finalists were Deandre Ayton of Phoenix and Trae Young of Atlanta.

WARRIORS: Golden State General Manager Bob Myers plans to meet with Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson ahead of the start of free agency.

“Yes,” Myers answered succinctly Monday when asked about sit-downs with both free agents, each injured for the runner-up Warriors during the NBA finals and expected to miss at least most of next season.

Is Myers optimistic about having productive conversations with the two stars?

“We’ll see.”

And that was all on Monday, when the Warriors formally introduced their three draft picks.

Though Myers did say he expects Thompson to have surgery this week after he tore the torn anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee during Game 6, which the Warriors lost at home as the Raptors clinched the franchise’s first championship. Durant was injured in the previous game at Toronto and underwent surgery for a ruptured right Achilles tendon that could keep him out for the majority of the 2019-20 season.

Myers and Coach Steve Kerr have made it clear they would like to keep Durant but are prepared for the waiting game as the two-time finals MVP makes his decision.

KINGS: A former top Sacramento Kings executive was sentenced to seven years in prison for siphoning $13.4 million from the team. Jeffrey David, 44, the team’s former chief revenue officer, pleaded guilty in December to wire fraud and aggravated identity theft.

KNICKS: The NBA fined the New York Knicks $50,000 for violating media rules by not allowing the New York Daily News to cover one of the team’s news conferences.

The Knicks held a news conference Friday to introduce their new draft picks, sending out an announcement with details to some media that cover the team but not to the Daily News. iday was not the first time the Daily News had been excluded from an event.

The Professional Basketball Writers Association and the Associated Press Sports Editors issued statements after Friday’s news conference condemning the team.

The NBA said the Knicks agreed to comply with league rules regarding equal access for the media in the future.


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