POSTED: May 16, 2016 10:20 AM ET
Kia Rookie of the Year: Karl-Anthony Towns
The Minnesota Timberwolves' Karl-Anthony Towns is a nominee for Kia Rookie of the Year.
NEW YORK — The Minnesota Timberwolves' Karl-Anthony Towns, who set franchise rookie records in scoring, rebounding, blocked shots and field goal percentage, has unanimously won the 2015-16 Kia NBA Rookie of the Year Award, the NBA announced today. The 7-foot center becomes the fifth unanimous winner since 1984 and joins teammate Andrew Wiggins, the 2014-15 honoree, to make the Timberwolves the first team with back-to-back winners in 42 years.
Towns received all 130 first-place votes (650 points) from a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters in the United States and Canada, joining Damian Lillard (2012-13 season), Blake Griffin (2010-11), David Robinson (1989-90) and Ralph Sampson (1983-84) as unanimous winners in the last 32 years. The New York Knicks' Kristaps Porzingis finished second with 363 points, and the Denver Nuggets' Nikola Jokic was third with 59 points. Players were awarded five points for each first-place vote, three points for each second-place vote and one point for each third-place vote.
The No. 1 overall pick in NBA Draft 2015 presented by State Farm, Towns led all rookies in scoring (18.3 ppg) and rebounding (10.5 rpg, eighth in the NBA) and ranked second in blocks (1.68 bpg, 10th in the NBA) -- making him the league's only player to reach those averages in the three categories. He also ranked third in the NBA in double-doubles (51) and eighth in field goal percentage (54.2). Towns was one of six players in the league to start all 82 games.
The 20-year-old Towns swept all six Kia NBA Western Conference Rookie of the Month awards on his way to becoming the seventh rookie in NBA history to average at least 18 points, 10 rebounds and 1.5 blocks and shoot 50 percent or better from the field. Since blocks became an official statistic in 1973-74, the other players to post those numbers are Sampson (1983-84), Hakeem Olajuwon (1984-85), Robinson (1989-90), Alonzo Mourning (1992-93), Shaquille O'Neal (1992-93) and Tim Duncan (1997-98).
Before last season, the Timberwolves had never had a Kia NBA Rookie of the Year winner since joining the NBA for the 1989-90 season. With Towns and Wiggins now honored in back-to-back years, the Timberwolves are the first team with consecutive winners since the Buffalo Braves in 1972-73 (Bob McAdoo) and 1973-74 (Ernie DiGregorio).
Towns receives the Eddie Gottlieb Trophy, which is named in honor of one of the NBA's founders. Gottlieb coached the Philadelphia Warriors to the NBA's first championship, in 1946-47.
As part of its support of the Kia NBA Rookie of the Year Award, Kia Motors America (KMA) will donate a brand new Sorento CUV to the Minnesota Chapter of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society on Towns' behalf. Kia will present a 2016 Sorento to the charity of choice of each of five 2015-16 year-end award winners as part of the Kia NBA Performance Awards. Following this season, Kia will have donated a total of 43 new vehicles to charitable organizations since its support of the NBA's prestigious honors began in 2008.
The 2015-16 Kia NBA Rookie of the Year Award is part of a series of on-court performance awards called the Kia NBA Performance Awards. The series, in its ninth season, is part of a multiyear marketing partnership between Kia Motors and the NBA, and includes five of the league's most prestigious year-end honors: Kia Most Valuable Player, Kia Defensive Player of the Year, Kia Sixth Man, Kia Most Improved Player and Kia Rookie of the Year. The series also includes the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Rookies of the Month and the Kia NBA Eastern and Western Conference Players of the Month during the regular season. Kia Motors is the Official Automotive Partner of the NBA and the Kia Optima is the league's Official Vehicle. For more information, please visit www.kia.com/NBA.
For the third year in a row, complete media voting results for each NBA annual award will be posted on NBA.com/official after the announcement of each winner. Click here for those results.
Below are the voting results for the 2015-16 Kia NBA Rookie of the Year Award. The balloting was tabulated by the independent accounting firm of Ernst & Young LLP.
2015-16 KIA NBA ROOKIE OF THE YEAR RESULTS
1st place (5 pts) | 2nd place (3 pts) | 3rd place (1 pt) | Total Points
Karl-Anthony Towns | Minnesot Timberwolves | 130 | 0 | 0 | 650
Kristaps Porzingis | New York Knicks | 0 | 117 | 12 | 363
Nikola Jokic | Denver Nuggets | 0 | 7 | 38 | 59
Devin Booker | Phoenix Suns | 0 | 3 | 40 | 49
Jahlil Okafor | Philadelphia 76ers | 0 | 3 | 25 | 34
Justise Winslow | Miami Heat | 0 | 0 | 7 | 7
Emmanuel Mudiay | Denver Nuggets | 0 | 0 | 4 | 4
Myles Turner | Indiana Pacers | 0 | 0 | 3 | 3
D'Angelo Russell | Los Angeles Lakers | 0 | 0 | 1 | 1