Schroder, Donovan Finalist for Awards

Erik Gee

The honors keep coming in for the Oklahoma City Thunder. Today the NBA announced that Billy Donovan is a finalist for coach of the year, while Dennis Schroder is up for the sixth man of the year award. 

Donovan has already been named co-coach of the year with the Bucks Mike Budenholzer by the NBA Basketball coaches association. And he has a chance to take the same honor as voted by the media. 

NBA Awards

 Oddsmakers gave the Thunder just a point two percent chance of making the playoffs. Not only is Oklahoma City in the playoffs, but they are also 42-26, and with some help, could finish as high as fourth in the Western Conference. 

Thunder General Manager Sam Presti says:

 "I really think he needs to be heavily considered for coach of the year."..."He's just tried to control the things he can control."

"I think Billy's done a great job relative to letting the guys play, giving them space and freedom."..."I think he's done a good job being creative with the ball-handlers we have and how to put those guys together."

Schroder is averaging 19 points off the bench while shooting 47 percent. Donovan sites Schroder's willingness to sacrifice for his teammates as one of the significant reasons for Oklahoma City's unexpected success. 

"I think everybody would agree he is more than capable of being a starting point guard in the league."..."And his unselfishness and putting the team first and willingness to come off the bench has been great."

Schroder is still with his family celebrating the birth of his daughter; there is no timetable for his return to Orlando.  

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With more than 20 years of experience hosting local and national radio shows, Erik Gee is a fixture of Oklahoma sports media. He has covered the Oklahoma City Thunder for the past six seasons. He is also the co-host of the Pat Jones show on 97.1 The Sports Animal in Tulsa.