By: Kyle Caso (@3_pointz)
The Sixth Man Award is given to the best non starter in the league. Over the years the award has been shooting guard dominated with players like Manu Ginobli, Jason Terry, Ben Gordon, Jamal Crawford and J.R Smith. Heres a list of some players who can win the honor this NBA season:
Tyreke Evans (Pelicans) - Tyreke Evans is an Offensive weapon who is a former Rookie of the year winner back in 2010-11. Tyreke as a starter in Sacramento last season averaged 15.2 PPG, 4.4 RPG, and 3.5 APG. One thing that really benefits Evan's is that you only have to play half of your total games coming off the bench. This will Benefit Evan's in that he plays behind Eric Gordon who has battled injuries that past few seasons which will give Evans more starts then some of the other candidates on this list. He should also see a lot of minuets at the Small Forward position as well giving Tyreke most likely the most minuets for a sixth man in the league.
Jamal Crawford (Clippers) - Jamal Crawford is not only a former sixth man of the year but has been in contention almost every year. Last year he finished a close second to J.R Smith last year. Its safe to say Jamal Crawford will most likely win it this year for many factors. For one J.J Redick will log a lot of minutes for the Clippers. Now that Bledsoe is out J.J can be a primary ball handler in the second teams as well as the starting SG. Also the addition of Jared Dudley should take away some minutes and production from Crawford.
J.R Smith (Knicks) -J.R won the award last year averaging 16.5 PPG with nearly five rebounds per game. Just like Jamal Crawford, J.R should see his production and freedom go down a bit with key additions and assuming players are healthy. If Amar'e Stoudemire is healthy, Andrea Bargnani will come off the bench with Smith in the secondary. Also J.R should see a lot of minuets with Carmelo which will take away a lot of offensive freedom.
Harrison Barnes (Warriors) - Although Harrison Barnes only averaged 9.2 PPG, 4.1 RPG, and 1.2 APG during the regular seasons once playoff time he became a whole different player. Getting his PPG to over 16! With the addition of Andre Iguodala, Barnes will be moved to the bench but you can expect minutes at the SG, SF and even PF when Golden State runs with a small lineup. Although Harrison Barnes will see the least amount of minutes at his natural NBA position on this list the spreading around of Barnes should lead to a balanced stat line at the end of the season.