Monta Ellis Named 2006-07 Most Improved Player
Closest Race Ever as Ellis Edges Sacramento’s Martin for Honor
Monta Ellis increased his scoring average by nearly 10 points from his rookie to his sophomore season.
Monta Ellis of the Golden State Warriors was named the winner of the 2006-07 NBA Most Improved Player Award, the NBA announced today. The annual award is presented to a player who has made a dramatic improvement from the previous season or seasons.
Ellis received a total of 352 points, including 47 first-place votes, from a panel of 129 sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada. The Sacramento Kings’ Kevin Martin finished second with 349 points (44 first-place votes) followed by the Utah Jazz’s Deron Williams with 101 points (13 first-place votes). Players were awarded five points for each first-place vote, three points for each second-place vote and one point for each third place vote received. This is the closest finish in the history of the award since 1990-91 when Scott Skiles of Orlando edged out Kevin Gamble of Boston by four votes
After averaging 6.8 points, 3.1 rebounds and 1.6 assists and .415 shooting for the Warriors in 2005-06, Ellis increased his scoring by 9.7 points (16.5 ppg) – the largest increase in the NBA this season -- to go along with his averages of 3.2 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 1.71 steals. Starting 53 of the 77 games he appeared in, Ellis reached double figures in scoring 68 times, including 24 games of 20 or more points. The 6-3 guard recorded three or more steals 20 times and had at least five steals three times, including a career-high six at Seattle (March 17).