James equals record with 11th selection in NBA first team

NEW YORK • Cleveland Cavaliers superstar LeBron James matched a record with his 11th All-NBA first team selection while Houston guard James Harden was a unanimous choice, the National Basketball Association (NBA) announced on Thursday.

Oklahoma City guard Russell Westbrook, San Antonio forward Kawhi Leonard and New Orleans centre Anthony Davis were other selections to the prestigious squad, chosen in a global media vote.

None of the Golden State Warriors roster were included in the selection.

James joined Kobe Bryant and Karl Malone as the only players in NBA history to make the first team 11 times.

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Harden was selected to the first team on all 100 ballots while Westbrook - who joined Oscar Robertson as the only players in NBA history to average a triple-double for a full season - and James, who set career-highs in rebounds and assists and led the league in minutes played, were chosen on 99 ballots. Leonard had 96 votes.

Davis had the narrowest call with 45 first team votes to 43 for Utah Jazz centre Rudy Gobert, edging him 343-339 in total points, with five for first team votes, three for second and one for third team selections.

Harden made the first team for the third time in four years while Davis, Westbrook and Leonard each made their second appearance on the list.

Harden averaged career highs of 29.1 points, 11.2 assists and 8.1 rebounds a game, leading the NBA in assists and finishing second in scoring to propel the Rockets to the NBA's third-best record at 55-27.

He also led the NBA by making 746 free throws, and made 262 three-pointers, third in the league.

James, in his 14th NBA campaign, ranked eighth in the NBA with 26.4 points a game and averaged career highs of 8.7 assists and 8.6 rebounds.

The All-NBA Second Team included Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo, Boston Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas, Gobert and two members of the Warriors, guard Stephen Curry and forward Kevin Durant.

The All-NBA third team consisted of Chicago forward Jimmy Butler and Golden State forward Draymond Green, centre DeAndre Jordan of the Los Angeles Clippers, Toronto guard DeMar DeRozan and Washington guard John Wall.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 20, 2017, with the headline 'James equals record with 11th selection in NBA first team'. Print Edition | Subscribe