Smart, Bridges headline NBA All-Defensive First Team

Marcus Smart of the Boston Celtics and Mikal Bridges of the Phoenix Suns lead the 2021-22  NBA All-Defensive First Team, the league announced Friday.

Smart and Bridges comprise the two guards on the NBA All-Defensive First Team.  Smart, the 2021-22 NBA Defensive Player of the Year, received 198 points (99 First Team votes) to earn his third selection to the NBA All-Defensive First Team.

Bridges, who finished in second place for the Defensive Player of the Year Award in his third NBA season, received 193 points (95 First Team votes).  This is Bridges’ first selection to the NBA All-Defensive Team (First Team and Second Team).

Joining Smart and Bridges on the NBA All-Defensive First Team are Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert; Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo, and Memphis Grizzlies forward Jaren Jackson Jr.

Gobert, a three-time Kia NBA Defensive Player of the Year, has been voted to the NBA All-Defensive First Team for the sixth consecutive season.  Antetokounmpo, the 2019-20 Kia NBA Defensive Player of the Year and a two-time Kia NBA Most Valuable Player, is an NBA All-Defensive First Team honoree for the fourth straight season.  Jackson, a four-year NBA veteran and the 2021-22 season leader in blocks per game (2.27), is making his debut on the NBA All-Defensive Team.

The 2021-22 NBA All-Defensive Second Team consists of Miami Heat forward Bam Adebayo, Bucks guard Jrue Holiday, Philadelphia 76ers guard Matisse Thybulle, Celtics center Robert Williams III, and Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green.

This is the third NBA All-Defensive Team selection for Adebayo, the fourth for Holiday and the second for Thybulle.  Williams joins Bridges and Jackson as a first-time member of the NBA All-Defensive Team.  Green, the 2016- NBA Defensive Player of the Year, has earned his seventh selection to the NBA All-Defensive Team.

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