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Lou Williams Listed as Heavy -1500 Favorite to Win 2019 NBA Sixth Man Award After Finalists Announced

Ryan Murphy

by Ryan Murphy in NBA Basketball

Updated Mar 30, 2020 · 9:28 AM PDT

Lou Williams
Low Williams is a two-time Sixth Man of the Year winner. (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire)
  • Lou Williams has the shortest odds to win the 2019 NBA Sixth Man of the Year Award
  • The Clippers guard has won the award twice before in 2015 and 2018
  • Williams faces some fierce competition from one of his own teammates

It isn’t often that a team’s “sixth man” is also its best player, but that’s the reality in Los Angeles, where Clippers super sub Low Williams led LA in scoring and assists for the second straight season in 2018-19.

Williams’ heroics powered the Clippers to a surprising postseason berth and earned the attention of oddsmakers, who have given him him at -1500 odds of winning the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year Award for the the third time in his career. Sweet Lou is joined on the board by fellow Clippers reserve Montrezl Harrell, and Indiana Pacers spark plug Domantas Sabonis.

The winner of the 2019 NBA Sixth Man of the Year Award will be announced on Monday, June 24th, at the league’s annual awards gala in Los Angeles.

2019 NBA Sixth Man of the Year Odds

Player NBA Sixth Man of the Year Odds
Lou Williams -1500
Domantas Sabonis +700
Montrezl Harrell +1000

Odds taken 05/21/19.

2018-19 Was Sweet for Lou Williams

Williams may come off the bench, but he’s a backup in name only. The 32-year-old combo guard averaged 20.0 points, 5.4 assists, and 3.0 rebounds in 26.6 minutes per game, and was a regular feature in LA’s crunch time units.

His late game wizardry was on display throughout the season, including a thrilling 125-121 win over the Mavericks on December 20th, in which Williams scored 13 of his 26 points in the fourth. The slender 6’1″ guard came up big again on February 2nd, when he helped LA erase a 25-point lead against the Pistons by dropping a game-high 39 points.

Those performances were impressive, but they pale in comparison to what Williams did in Game 2 of the first-round of the playoffs. Facing a 31 point deficit to the Golden State Warriors, Williams orchestrated the biggest comeback in postseason history by exploding for 36 points and 11 assists. For one night at least, Kevin Durant and Steph Curry both had to take a backseat to Sweet Lou.

It was just the latest in a season’s worth of reminders that Williams remains one of the league’s premiere playmakers and clutch performers.

Domantas Sabonis Flourished in His Third Season

The Pacers desperately needed someone to pick up the slack when Victor Oladipo went down with a season-ending injury, and Domantas Sabonis responded. The third-year player posted career highs in points (14.1), rebounds (9.3), and assists (2.9), while also finishing in the top 10 in field goal percentage. His ability to crash the boards and set up teammates was crucial to Indiana’s success, and helped the team secure the fifth seed in the Eastern Conference despite playing without its lone All-Star.

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Sabonis may not be the flashiest player in the league, but he’s the kind of sharp shooting, high IQ big who is uniquely built for today’s NBA.

Montrezl Harrell Was a Wrecking Ball for LA

Many assumed the Clippers were throwing in the towel when they traded Tobias Harris to the Sixers on February 6th. However, those within the organization knew that Montrezl Harrell was more than capable of filling the void. The ultra-athletic big man rewarded their faith by averaging 18.4 points, 6.1 rebounds, and 2.4 assists per game following the All-Star break. He and Williams combined to help LA’s bench mob average a league-high 53.4 points per game.

Harrell isn’t capable of creating his own offense like Williams, but he is an insanely energetic big who sets devastating screens, rolls to the hoop hard, and dunks the ball with the force of a hurricane. The Clippers would have been adrift without his tremendous heart and hustle.

Williams for the Win

Sabonis and Harrell both had outstanding seasons, but neither holds a candle to Williams, who is the very embodiment of the modern-day sixth man. Sweet Lou scored 25 points or more 16 times this past season, and became the NBA’s all-time leading scorer in points off the bench on March 11th.

Williams wasn’t just the best sixth man in 2018-19; he might be the best sixth man of all time. Don’t be surprised if this award carries his name soon after he retires.

Pick: Lou Williams (-1500)  

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