The NBA announced their picks for All-NBA Teams on Thursday (May 24), revealing LeBron James and Kevin Durant among the top picks for the prestigious All-NBA First Team honors.
James (who also won MVP honors) led the way, receiving 118 of a possible 120 first team votes, while Durant earned 117 points. They both join the First Team picks, which also include: Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers, Dwight Howard of the Orlando Magic, and Chris Paul of the Los Angeles Clippers.
James recorded a career-low 37.5 minutes, but led the NBA in plus-minus score differential (+7.6) and ranked third in scoring (27.1 ppg), while pacing the Heat in assists (6.2 apg) and tying for the team lead in rebounds (7.9 rpg). Additionally, King James established career bests in field goal percentage (.531) and three-point field goal percentage (.362); and earns First Team honors for the fifth straight season and sixth time overall.
Durant earns his third All-NBA First Team selection. He led the league in scoring (28.0 ppg) for the third consecutive year, edging Bryant in the second-closest finish all-time, to go along with career highs in rebounds (8.0 rpg) and assists (3.5 apg). He also earned All-Star MVP honors after scoring 36 points in the Western Conference's 152-149 win over the East.
As for Kobe, he became the active leader for most First-Team nods with 10. He finished second in the league in scoring (27.9 ppg). Bryant's 10 First-Team selections ties for second all-time (Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Elgin Baylor, Bob Cousy, Michael Jordan, Bob Pettit, and Jerry West). Karl Malone is the all-time leader with 11.
Dwight Howard, an All-NBA First Team selection for the fifth consecutive season, led the league in rebounding with a career-high 14.5 rpg and field goal percentage (.573), and finished second in double-doubles (43) and third in blocks (2.15 bpg). Howard averaged 20.6 points and was one of only three players to average at least 20 points and 10 rebounds.
Paul, an All-NBA First Team selection for the second time in his career, paced the league in steals (2.53 spg) and finished third in assists (9.1 apg), adding 19.8 ppg and 3.5 rpg. He posted 23 double-doubles, tying for 16th overall. Paul this season became only the second player (Tim Hardaway, 1990-91) in NBA history to average at least 19.0 points, 9.0 assists, 3.5 rebounds and 2.0 steals.
Making the All-NBA Second Team are: guards Tony Parker of the San Antonio Spurs and Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder, forwards Blake Griffin of the Los Angeles Clippers and Kevin Love of the Minnesota Timberwolves, and center Andrew Bynum of the Los Angeles Lakers.
And, the All-NBA Third Team includes: Miami Heat's Dwyane Wade and the Boston Celtics' Rajon Rondo at guard, the New York Knicks' Carmelo Anthony and the Dallas Mavericks' Dirk Nowitzki at forward, and the Knicks' Tyson Chandler at center.
Each All-NBA Team was chosen by a panel of 120 sportswriters and broadcasters. The media voted for All-NBA First, Second and Third Teams by position with points awarded on a 5-3-1 basis.
Below is the breakdown (via NBA.com):
2011-12 All-NBA First Team - Player, Team (First Team Votes)
LeBron James, Miami (118) - Forward
Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City (117) - Forward
Dwight Howard, Orlando (75) - Center
Kobe Bryant, L.A. Lakers (104) - Guard
Chris Paul, L.A. Clippers (74) - Guard
2011-12 All-NBA Second Team - Player, Team (First Team Votes)
Kevin Love, Minnesota (16) - Forward
Blake Griffin, L.A. Clippers - Forward
Andrew Bynum, L.A. Lakers (33) - Center
Tony Parker, San Antonio (41) - Guard
Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City (5) - Guard
2011-12 All-NBA Third Team - Player, Team (First Team Votes)
Carmelo Anthony, New York (1) - Forward
Dirk Nowitzki, Dallas - Forward
Tyson Chandler, New York (4) - Center
Dwyane Wade, Miami (1) - Guard
Rajon Rondo, Boston (4) -Guard