Paul George, Russell Westbrook selected to All-NBA teams
In a week of benchmarks for Thunder forward Paul George, he received his latest and most significant on Thursday.
For the first time in his nine-year career, George was voted to the All-NBA First Team, as announced by the league Thursday. George has been selected All-NBA Third Team four times, but elevated to the league’s top team thanks to a season in which he set career highs in points (28), rebounds (8.2), assists (4.1) and steals per game (2.2).
This week, George was named to his second NBA All-Defensive First Team – the fourth All-Defensive team selection of his career.
Joining George on the All-NBA First Team are Golden State’s Stephen Curry, Houston’s James Harden, Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo and Denver’s Nikola Jokic. Media voting for All-NBA is completed before the beginning of the playoffs.
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George’s selection to the First Team is the Thunder’s first since Russell Westbrook was picked in 2016-17.
Westbrook was voted All-NBA for the eighth time in his illustrious career, earning Third Team honors. Westbrook completed an unprecedented third consecutive season with a triple-double average (22.9 points, 11.1 rebounds, 10.7 assists) and finished fourth in the NBA in steals per game (1.9).
The All-NBA Second Team includes Philadelphia's Joel Embiid, Golden State's Kevin Durant, Portland's Damian Lillard, Toronto's Kawhi Leonard and Boston's Kyrie Irving.
Westbrook leads the Third Team along with Detroit's Blake Griffin, the Los Angeles Lakers' LeBron James, Utah's Rudy Gobert and Charlotte's Kemba Walker.
George received the fourth-most First Team votes (71) behind unanimous selections Curry and Antetokounmpo (100), and Curry (91). His 71 First Team votes were well ahead of Durant's 29 for the second forward spot on the First Team.