NEW YORK – Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard has been named the Kia NBA Player of the Seeding Games and leads the Kia NBA All-Seeding Games Team, the NBA announced today. In addition, Phoenix Suns head coach Monty Williams has been named the NBA Coach of the Seeding Games after guiding the Suns to an 8-0 record in the seeding games.
Designed to honor top performers for games played July 30 – Aug. 14, the Kia NBA Player of the Seeding Games, the Kia NBA All-Seeding Games Team and the NBA Coach of the Seeding Games were selected by a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters who have been on site covering the 2019-20 season restart at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida.
Lillard averaged an NBA-high 37.6 points and 9.6 assists in the seeding games, leading Portland to a 6-2 record. The Trail Blazers won their final three seeding games, with Lillard scoring 51 points against the Philadelphia 76ers, tying his franchise scoring record with 61 points against the Dallas Mavericks, and finishing with 42 points and 12 assists in a victory over the Brooklyn Nets that clinched Portland’s spot in the Western Conference Play-In.
The Trail Blazers will face the Memphis Grizzlies today in the Western Conference Play-In (2:30 p.m. ET, ABC). The second game of the Play-In, if necessary, will take place Sunday, Aug. 16 (4:30 p.m. ET, ESPN). The 2020 NBA Playoffs will begin Monday, Aug. 17 with four games on ESPN.
Lillard was unanimously selected as the Kia NBA Player of the Seeding Games, receiving all 22 first-place votes for a total of 110 points. Phoenix guard Devin Booker (58 points) and Indiana Pacers forward T.J. Warren (14 points) finished in second and third place, respectively. 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.
Lillard, Booker (30.5 ppg, 6.0 apg in seeding games) and Warren (31.0 ppg, 6.3 rpg) were voted to the NBA All-Seeding Games First Team, which also includes Dallas guard Luka Dončić (30.0 ppg, 10.1 rpg, 9.7 apg) and Houston Rockets guard James Harden (34.1 ppg, 8.3 rpg, 8.9 apg). Lillard, Booker and Dončić were named to the First Team on all 22 ballots for a total of 66 points, followed by Harden and Warren with 58 points each.
The NBA All-Seeding Games Second Team comprises Milwaukee Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (27.8 ppg, 12.2 rpg in seeding games), LA Clippers forward Kawhi Leonard (28.8 ppg, 4.3 apg), Brooklyn guard Caris LeVert (25.0 ppg, 6.7 apg), Denver Nuggets rookie forward Michael Porter Jr. (22.0 ppg, 8.6 rpg) and Dallas forward-center Kristaps Porzingis (30.5 ppg, 9.5 rpg). Antetokounmpo led the Second Team with 36 points, including eight First Team votes.
The media panel voted for five players for the All-Seeding Games First Team and five players for the All-Seeding Games Second Team, choosing a total of 10 players at any position from either conference. Players were awarded three points for a First Team vote and one point for a Second Team vote.
Phoenix’s Williams, who led the Suns to the NBA’s only unbeaten record in the seeding games and the franchise’s first eight-game winning streak since the 2009-10 season, was selected as the NBA Coach of the Seeding Games with 20 of 21 first-place votes (103 points). Portland’s Terry Stotts received the other first-place vote and finished in second place with 41 points, followed by Brooklyn’s Jacque Vaughn (18 points) in third place. Coaches were awarded five points for each first-place vote, three points for each second-place vote and one point for each third-place vote.
The NBA previously announced the 2019-20 finalists for the Kia NBA Performance Awards and the NBA Coach of the Year. TNT will announce the award winners during its coverage of the playoffs. Voting by a media panel for those awards, in addition to the All-NBA Team, NBA All-Rookie Team and NBA All-Defensive Team, was based on games played from the start of the regular season through March 11 and did not include the seeding games.
Below are the voting results for the Kia NBA Player of the Seeding Games, the Kia NBA All-Seeding Games Team and the NBA Coach of the Seeding Games. Complete media ballots are available at pr.nba.com.