GSB Season 2 Award Predictions
With the GSB’s second season officially concluding with an Oakland Otters championship, how did the top individual players fare with award races? A season that featured many viable candidates for MVP, a tight rookie of the year race, and a very competitive season from wire to wire left little to be desired. Who will take home the individual hardware?
The MVP race was tightly contested between a multitude of star players but there were five finalists who stood out from the pack. The Oakland Otters led by Anthony Stank has a legitimate case for the award. With 15.5 points (8th overall), 1.8 steals (6th overall), and a whopping 59% from beyond the arc, Stank certainly played at a high level all season. A similar combination of scoring and defense, Memphis’ Dolph averaged a double-double with 11.0 points per game and led the league in rebounding with 12 per contest. The league scoring leader Kanin Abel tallied 17.5 points per game while hitting 57% of his shots. Abel’s efficiency and ability to hit from all levels on the floor set him apart from the pack. Truck Turner put in another impressive season with 13.6 points per game, 3.9 assists, and a top 10 finish in steals at 1.8 per contest. Finally, standout Stampede man Dior Island led San Antonio with 17.1 points (2nd overall), 2.5 assists and 2.3 rebounds. Was it enough for his first MVP award? My personal pick would be Anthony Stank due to the clear rise of the Otters translating to his jump in performance.
Anthony Stank - 15.5 PPG / 2.5 APG / 1.8 SPG / 11-3 Team Record
Dolph - 11.0 PPG / 12.0 RPG / 1.8 BPG 9-5 Team Record
Kanin Abel - 17.5 PPG / 3.6 APG / 1.0 SPG / 9-5 Team Record
Truck Turner - 13.6 PPG / 3.9 APG / 1.8 SPG / 9-5 Team Record
Dior Island - 17.1 PPG / 2.5 APG / 2.3 RPG / 4-10 Team Record
Prediction - Anthony Stank
Rookie of the Year Race
A loaded rookie class boiled down to 5 stars pulling away from the pack. Dior Island, Dex Matty, Jamal Davis, Ricky Spyder, and Brendan Goshay were named the five finalists for ROY. This one really turned into a two horse race for me as Ricky Spyder and Dior Island seemed to stand out from the pack. Dior finished second in points per game among all players and first amongst rookies while Spyder was a dominant double-double machine finishing in the top 10 for rebounding. In the end, Dior Island is in legitimate MVP discussion for a reason - the Stampede star should be the winner for ROY by a sizable margin.
Dior Island - 17.1 PPG / 2.5 APG / 2.3 RPG
Dex Matty - 13.5 PPG / 3.0 APG / 0.4 SPG
Jamal Davis - 10.9 PPG / 8.9 RPG / 1.8 BPG
Ricky Spyder - 14.1 PPG / 9.0 RPG / 1.0 BPG
Brendan Goshay - 13.5 PPG / 2.1 APG / 1.9 RPG
Prediction - Dior Island
Defensive Player of the Year Race
Defensive player of the year is truly one of the hardest to call, these are the stats that do not show up in the box score and team defense does not always translate to how great an individual defender is. Jamal Davis was a lone bright spot for a Baltimore team that otherwise was not great at stopping the opposition. Truck Turner continued his excellence on the defensive end and managed to end up among the leaders in steals per game yet again. Devan Davis saw impressive on ball defense for Portland as their unit was highly impressive. Buckley dominated the interior and also saw a stifling defense in part due to his efforts. Finally, Bear Johnson did not have as many of the “counting” stats but he was a huge part of why Dallas’ defense was so daunting to face off with. I lean towards Buckley in what should be the closest race of all due to his dominance on the interior and leading the way for Vice City.
Jamal Davis - 1.8 BPG / 0.8 SPG / 96.0 Points Against Per Game
Truck Turner - 1.8 SPG / 0.1 BPG / 88.0 Points Against Per Game
Devan Davis - 1.4 SPG / 0.3 BPG / 86.0 Points Against Per Game
Billy Bob Buckley - 1.9 BPG / 0.4 SPG / 86.0 Points Against Per Game
Bear Johnson - 0.9 SPG / 0.6 BPG / 83.0 Points Against Per Game
Prediction - Billy Bob Buckley
Person of the Year
Diverting away from the on-court awards, the next section will cover those who contributed to the league in a variety of ways - first up my prediction for Person of the Year. Lots of potential candidates for this one as well, for me the winner would be Stank as the creator of the Stank fund. In a great year for the league, this was a standout moment in my opinion.
Prediction - Anthony Stank
Commentator of the Year
This one is incredibly subjective, everyone likes different things when it comes to commentary. I’ve narrowed it down to a few standouts from my own viewership this season - Nick, Hughes and Pizzo. Each of them bring a different creative flair to the broadcasts and I have always found their calls to be entertaining. In another tightly contested race, I think Aaron Hughes will win a close one.
Prediction - Aaron Hughes
Front Office of the Year
Many factors go into a successful front office - strong ownership, unison between the staff, team success, and communication with the team. Four front offices leaped ahead in my opinion. Oakland, and Vice City boasted a division title with the Otters being the best overall team in the regular season (and eventual champions). One could also make the case for the Orcas and Pioneers front offices as they both advanced to the semi-finals in what was inarguably the most competitive division in the GSB. In the end, I lean for Oakland as they led the league during the regular season and ultimately emerged as Champions.
Prediction - Oakland Otters