Spurs’ Kawhi Leonard unanimously selected to 2015-16 NBA All-Defensive First Team

NEW YORK – Kia NBA Defensive Player of the Year Kawhi Leonard of the San Antonio Spurs has been unanimously selected to the 2015-16 NBA All-Defensive First Team, the NBA announced today.  The 6-7 forward is the only player this season to receive all 130 First Team votes (260 total points) from a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters in the United States and Canada.

The NBA All-Defensive First Team also features forward Draymond Green of the Golden State Warriors (251 points, 123 First Team votes), center DeAndre Jordan of the Los Angeles Clippers (137 points, 47 First Team votes) and guards Avery Bradley of the Boston Celtics (149 points, 62 First Team votes) and Chris Paul of the Clippers (148 points, 59 First Team votes).

Paul was named to the First Team for the fifth consecutive season and sixth time overall, making him the 12th player all time with at least six career nods.  Leonard, Green and Jordan made the First Team for the second straight season, while Bradley earned the honor for the first time.

The NBA All-Defensive Second Team consists of forwards Paul Millsap of the Atlanta Hawks (97 points, 11 First Team votes) and Paul George of the Indiana Pacers (48 points, five First Team votes), center Hassan Whiteside of the Miami Heat (126 points, 44 First Team votes) and guards Tony Allen of the Memphis Grizzlies (121 points, 44 First Team votes) and Jimmy Butler of the Chicago Bulls (62 points, 18 First Team votes).

Players were awarded two points for each First Team vote and one point for each Second Team vote.  Voters were asked to select two guards, two forwards and one center for each team, choosing players at the position they play regularly.  Players who received votes at multiple positions were slotted at the position where they received the most votes.

A first-time NBA All-Star this season, Leonard helped San Antonio hold opponents to a league-low 92.9 points per game.  The Spurs also finished with the NBA’s best defensive rating, according to NBA.com/Stats, allowing 96.6 points per 100 possessions.  Their defensive rating improved to 94.9 when Leonard was on the court and fell to 99.2 when he wasn’t – a difference of 4.3 points per 100 possessions.   Leonard, the first non-center to earn the Kia NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award in back-to-back seasons since Dennis Rodman 25 years ago, averaged 1.78 steals (12th in the NBA), 5.5 defensive rebounds and a career-high 0.99 blocks.

Green, also a first-time All-Star section this season, was the runner-up to Leonard in Kia NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award voting for the second year in a row.  Green ranked fifth in the NBA in total defensive rebounds (635) and averaged 1.47 steals and 1.40 blocks for a Warriors team that tied for fourth in the league in defensive rating (100.9 points allowed per 100 possessions).  Golden State gave up 97.5 points per 100 possessions with Green on the court compared with 109.5 points per 100 possessions with him off the court – a difference of 12 points.

The Clippers, behind Jordan and Paul, and the Celtics, behind Bradley, tied the Warriors for fourth in the NBA in defensive rating.  Bradley, the top finisher among guards in Kia NBA Defensive Player of the Year voting (sixth place overall), averaged a career-high 1.54 steals for Boston.  Jordan led the NBA in defensive rebounding (10.3 drpg) and ranked second in blocks (2.30 bpg), while Paul was tied for third in steals (2.05 spg).

Complete media voting results for each NBA annual award will be posted on NBA.com/official after the announcement of each winner.  Click here for those results.

Below are the balloting results for the 2015-16 NBA All-Defensive Teams.  The balloting was tabulated by the independent accounting firm of Ernst & Young LLP.


Position Player Team 1st Team (2 pts) 2nd Team (1 pt) Total
Forward Kawhi Leonard San Antonio Spurs 130 260
Forward Draymond Green Golden State Warriors 123 5 251
Center DeAndre Jordan Los Angeles Clippers 47 43 137
Guard Avery Bradley Boston Celtics 62 25 149
Guard Chris Paul Los Angeles Clippers 59 30 148



Position Player Team 1st Team (2 pts) 2nd Team (1 pt) Total
Forward Paul Millsap Atlanta Hawks 11 75 97
Forward Paul George Indiana Pacers 5 38 48
Center Hassan Whiteside Miami Heat 44 38 126
Guard Tony Allen Memphis Grizzlies 44 33 121
Guard Jimmy Butler Chicago Bulls 18 26 62


Other players receiving votes, with point totals (First Team votes in parentheses): Rudy Gobert, Utah, 64 (17); Klay Thompson, Golden State, 49 (16); Jae Crowder, Boston, 47 (3); LeBron James, Cleveland, 43 (5); Kyle Lowry, Toronto, 43 (9); Danny Green, San Antonio, 39 (9); Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City, 35 (12); Tim Duncan, San Antonio, 33 (5); Ricky Rubio, Minnesota, 30 (6); Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Detroit, 27 (3); Anthony Davis, New Orleans, 24 (3); Andre Drummond, Detroit, 14 (5); Serge Ibaka, Oklahoma City, 14 (1); Stephen Curry, Golden State, 13 (3); Andre Iguodala, Golden State, 13 (3); Patrick Beverley, Houston, 11 (1); Al Horford, Atlanta, 7 (1); Marcus Smart, Boston, 7 (2); John Wall, Washington, 6; Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee, 3; Trevor Ariza, Houston, 3; Kent Bazemore, Atlanta, 3; Andrew Bogut, Golden State, 3 (1); DeMarcus Cousins, Sacramento, 3 (1); Nicolas Batum, Charlotte, 2; Victor Oladipo, Orlando, 2 (1); LaMarcus Aldridge, San Antonio, 1; Harrison Barnes, Golden State, 1; Bismack Biyombo, Toronto, 1; Mike Conley, Memphis, 1; Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City, 1; Derrick Favors, Utah, 1; George Hill, Indiana, 1; Wesley Matthews, Dallas, 1; Luc Mbah a Moute, Los Angeles Clippers; Kristaps Porzingis, New York, 1; Andre Roberson, Oklahoma City, 1; Mike Scott, Atlanta, 1; Dwyane Wade, Miami, 1.