NBA names regular-season MVP award after Michael Jordan

On Tuesday, the NBA unveiled six newly designed trophies named after NBA legends, including the Michael Jordan Trophy, which will be awarded to the league’s regular-season Most Valuable Player.

Below are the names of the awards and the newly designed trophies.

THE MICHAEL JORDAN TROPHY – NBA Most Valuable Player:

The league’s MVP will now be awarded with The Michael Jordan Trophy, bearing the name of the NBA legend widely regarded as one of the greatest players of all time.  During his illustrious career, Jordan was named MVP five times.

The bronze trophy features a player breaking out of a rock to reach for the ultimate rock – a crystal basketball.  From the bottom to its top, the patina of the trophy grows more burnished – “raw to refined” – signifying the MVP’s hard work and progression from entering the league to achieving the NBA’s greatest individual honor.  The trophy’s reach symbolizes an MVP’s endless chase for greatness.

Additionally included throughout are subtle nods that pay tribute to the trophy’s namesake:

  • The trophy stands 23.6 inches tall and weighs 23.6 pounds, representing Jordan’s jersey number (23) and number of NBA championships (6).

  • Its five-sided base is a nod to Jordan’s five league MVPs.

  • The namesake badge is six-sided, a nod to Jordan’s six NBA championships.

  • The 15-degree angle of the base is a nod to Jordan’s 15-season career.

  • The crystal basketball consists of 23 points, a nod to Jordan’s jersey number.

  • The crystal basketball measures 1.23 inches in diameter, in reference to the singularity of the MVP and Jordan’s standout career.

THE JERRY WEST TROPHY –NBA Clutch Player of the Year:The NBA will introduce a new Performance Award at the end of the 2022-23 season, the NBA Clutch Player of the Year, with its recipient receiving The Jerry West Trophy.

Voted on by a media panel based on nominations from NBA head coaches, the award will honor the NBA player who best comes through for his teammates in the clutch.

Legendary Los Angeles Lakers broadcaster Chick Hearn gave West the nickname “Mr. Clutch” for his extraordinary shooting at the end of close games.  The trophy features an NBA player shooting a jump shot, modeled after West’s perfect form.

THE HAKEEM OLAJUWON TROPHY – Defensive Player of the Year:Defensive dominance helped define Hakeem Olajuwon’s Hall of Fame career.  A two-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year and nine-time NBA All-Defensive Team selection, Olajuwon is the league’s all-time leader in blocked shots and ranks ninth in steals.  He is also a two-time NBA champion, 12-time NBA All-Star, league MVP, two-time NBA Finals MVP, 12-time All-NBA Team selection and a member of the NBA’s 50th and 75th Anniversary Teams.

The trophy features a player in a classic defensive stance with one hand up and one down, knees bent and ready to move.

THE WILT CHAMBERLAIN TROPHY – NBA Rookie of the Year:

Wilt Chamberlain’s 1959-60 season is unmatched for an NBA rookie.  Chamberlain averaged 37.6 points and 27.0 rebounds in 46.4 minutes per game for the Philadelphia Warriors, winning both the Rookie of the Year and MVP awards.  His career highlights include two NBA championships, 13 NBA All-Star selections, four league MVPs, 10 All-NBA Team selections, an NBA Finals MVP and inclusion on the league’s 35th, 50th and 75th Anniversary Teams.

The trophy features a player palming two basketballs at once.

THE JOHN HAVLICEK TROPHY – NBA Sixth Man of the Year:John Havlicek starred in his role during his Hall of Fame career, excelling off the bench like no player before him.  Havlicek came off the bench for the first seven seasons of his career and was an All-Star in four of those seasons.  His career highlights include eight NBA championships, 13 NBA All-Star selections, 11 All-NBA Team selections, an NBA Finals MVP, eight NBA All-Defensive Team selections and inclusion on the league’s 35th, 50th and 75th Anniversary Teams.

The trophy features a player elevated and shooting a running jumper, symbolic of the boost provided by the player to his team.

THE GEORGE MIKAN TROPHY – NBA Most Improved Player of the Year:A layup and footwork exercise known as the “Mikan Drill” has been used for decades by players at all levels to improve their game.  It is named for George Mikan, who mastered the fundamentals as the NBA’s first dominant big man.  His Hall of Fame career included five NBA championships in seven seasons, four NBA All-Star selections, an NBA All-Star Game MVP, six selections to the All-NBA Team and inclusion on the NBA’s 25th, 35th, 50th and 75th Anniversary Teams. 

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