The 2011-2012 basketball season ended last night, as the Miami Heat finally fulfilled their immense promise by defeating Oklahoma City 4-1 in the NBA finals. So 2011-2012 in review.
2011-2012 Player of the Year
1. LeBron James, Miami Heat. NBA MVP in the regular season and the playoffs. Hard to do any more than that. The 6-8 forward scored 27 points with 8 boards and 6 assists per game during the regular season. In the playoffs he scored 30.5 points with 10 boards and 5 assists.
2. Brittney Griner, Baylor Bears. Led the Bears to a 40-0 season and the women's NCAA title. The 6-8 post is emerging as one of the best women's players of all-time,and so her team is also coming to be recognized as one of the best ever. She contributed 23 points, 9 boards and 5 blocks per game (full season), while the Bears out-scored their NCAA tournament opponents 76-55.
3. Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City Thunder. Now a 3-time NBA scoring leader, the 6-9 forward scored 28 points per game with 8 boards and 3.5 assists to lead the Thunder to their 1st NBA finals.In the playoffs he scored 29 points per game with 8 boards and 3 assists.
4. Anthony Davis, Kentucky Wildcats. The 6-10 freshman center-forward won most Player of the Year awards, finishing with 14 points per game, 10 rebounds and 5 blocked shots. He led the Wildcats to the NCAA title at 38-2.
5. Nnemkadi Ogwumike, Stanford Cardinal. The 6-2 power forward led Stanford to the Final Four, and has scored more than 2,000 career points with more than 1,000 rebounds.
Coach of the Year
1. Kim Mulkey, Baylor Bears. NCAA women's champs at 40-0 and out-scored their NCAA tournament foes by an average of 76-55.
2. Muffet McGraw, Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Led the Irish to the runner-up slot in the women's NCAA tournament and a 35-4 overall record.
3. Cheryl Reeve, Minnesota Lynx. The Lynx reversed more than a decade of mediocrity going 27-7 during the regular season and 7-1 during the post-season to win the WNBA title.
4. Bill Self, Kansas Jayhawks. Won most of the men's coach of the year awards after Kansas took 2nd in the NCAA tournament with a 32-7 record.
5. Gregg Popovich, San Antonio Spurs. Led the Spurs to a 50-17 regular season record, but his team fell to Oklahoma City in the conference finals.
Team of the Year
1. Baylor Bears 40-0. NCAA women's champs.
2. Miami Heat 46-20 (regular season) and 16-7 (playoffs). NBA champs.
3. Oklahoma City Thunder 47-19 and 13-7. NBA runner-up.
4. Kentucky Wildcats 36-2. NCAA champs.
5. Stanford Cardinal 35-2. NCAA women's runners-up.