Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard, winner of the 2009-10 Defensive Player of the Year Award presented by Kia Motors, and guard Rajon Rondo of the Boston Celtics headline the NBA All-Defensive First Team, the NBA announced today. By totaling 57 points overall, including 28 First Team votes, Howard edged Rondo (50 points overall and 23 First Team votes) as the leading vote-getter.
Also selected to the All-Defensive First Team are forward LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers (45 points), Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant (34 points) and Charlotte Bobcats forward Gerald Wallace (30 points).
Howard became the first player to lead the league in rebounding and blocks (1973-74 was the first season blocks were kept as an official statistic) in consecutive seasons, averaging 13.2 rebounds and 2.78 blocks. He also became only the fifth player in NBA history to lead the league in rebounding for at least three consecutive seasons. With Howard anchoring the defense, the Magic allowed 95.3 ppg, which ranked fourth in the NBA, and held the opposition to a league-low .438 shooting from the field, including 24 games where opponents shot under .400. Orlando held the opposition to less than 100 points 57 times and to less than 90 points 24 times.
The NBA All-Defensive Second Team consists of center Tim Duncan of the San Antonio Spurs, guards Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat and Thabo Sefolosha of the Oklahoma City Thunder, and forwards Josh Smith of the Atlanta Hawks and Anderson Varejao of the Cleveland Cavaliers. Duncan has been selected to the NBA All-Defensive team 13 consecutive seasons.
The voting panel consisted of the NBA’s 30 head coaches, who were asked to select NBA All-Defensive First and Second Teams by position. Coaches were not permitted to vote for players from their own team. Two points were awarded for a First Team vote and one point was awarded for a Second Team vote.