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NBPA Votes Russell Westbrook MVP, Hardest to Guard

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NBA players agree that Russell Westbrook is the Most Valuable Player for the 2016-17 season.

The National Basketball Players Association released the results of the players’ votes for 14 individual awards and Teammate of the Year for 30 teams for the 2016-17 season. Awards were given during the 2017 Players Voice Awards announced via Twitter on Friday.

Oklahoma City’s Westbrook, who was voted MVP by the media in June, also won “Hardest to Guard” and “Best Dressed” by the players.

Milwaukee’s Malcolm Brogdon won Rookie of the Year honors just as he did from the media vote. But the players voted for San Antonio’s Kawhi Leonard as “Best Defender” and Lou Williams as “Best Off the Bench.” In the media vote, Golden State’s Draymond Green won Defensive Player of the Year and Houston’s Eric Gordon took Sixth Man of the Year honors.

Players voted San Antonio’s Gregg Popovich as the “Coach You’d Most Like To Play For,” Cleveland’s LeBron James as “Player You Secretly Wish Was On Your Team,” and Vince Carter as “Most Influential Veteran.” Player voting took place at the end of the regular season and did not take into consideration playoff performances.

Source: Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN

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Report: Shane Larkin Unlikely to Return in Eastern Conference Finals

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Shane Larkin (shoulder) is with the  here in Cleveland and is improving. But Brad Stevens said he will not play in Games 3 and 4, with a return unlikely in this series.

Source: A. Sherrod Blakely on Twitter

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Report: Suns ‘certainly open’ to Moving No. 1 Overall Pick

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Phoenix Suns general manager Ryan McDonough says he is open to relinquishing his prized place in the NBA draft’s catbird seat — for the right return.

McDonough, in an interview on ESPN2’s NBA Draft Combine special on Friday, said the Suns haven’t ruled out the option of dealing away the No. 1 pick in June’s draft for a lower pick or even a worthy veteran.

“We’re certainly open to that. We’ll consider it,” McDonough said. “Obviously, we’ll have more information closer to the draft than we do today, after we go through the workout process and the interview process and we get the medical physicals. So we’re open to that.

“I think if you look around the NBA, as far as the veteran players, there are probably a few players we’d consider trading the pick for, not … just pick for player No. 1. So it’ll be a busy month for us.”

Source: ESPN

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Sources: Lakers Telling Teams No Players Untouchable in Trades

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As the Lakers head into a potentially franchise-changing offseason, their front office is keeping its options fully open.

While they like their young core and would prefer to keep those players growing together, they have told teams no player is untouchable in trades, according to multiple sources who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of trade and free-agent negotiations.

To be clear, the Lakers are not actively shopping any of their players. They are willing to listen to offers and could move one of them — even a member of the talented young cadre of Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma, Brandon Ingram or Josh Hart — if an offer blows them away.

Source: Tania Ganguli of the Los Angeles Times

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