If you were wondering how the NBA plans to fill a prime-time awards show, we got part of the answer today.
TNT announced eight new awards to be voted on by fans through social media: Assist of the Year, Best Style, Block of the Year, Dunk of the Year, Game Winner of the Year, Performance of the Year, Best Playoff Moment, and Best Social Game.
— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) April 27, 2017
Fans can vote on NBA.com, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. The league announced finalists for each award already, perhaps in order to avoid a Zaza Pachulia situation.
It’s still unclear how the league plans to fill the rest of the time allotted for the show (or how long it will be, for that matter). We know they plan to announce the All-NBA teams in advance, so that teams can plan for free agency (because of the new CBA, players like Paul George and Gordon Hayward are subject to significantly bigger contracts if they make an All-NBA team).
This leaves the MVP, Rookie of the Year, Defensive Player of the Year, All-Defensive Teams, All-Rookie Teams, Coach of the Year, Most Improved and Sixth Man of the Year, along with these new awards.
Including commercials, that’s surely enough to fill an hour, but maybe not two. If the NBA plans to fill that much time, we expect to see more announcements about the show in the coming weeks.