NEW YORK, April 26 – Indiana Pacers’ forward Ron Artest, recently named the NBA Defensive Player of the Year, led the voting for the 2003-04 NBA All-Defensive Teams, which were announced by the NBA today.

Artest, who made his first career appearance on the All-Defensive First Team and second consecutive on the NBA’s All-Defensive Team, is joined on the First Team by the two-time Defensive Player of the Year Ben Wallace of the Detroit Pistons, who was named All-Defensive First Team for the third consecutive season; San Antonio Spurs’ guard Bruce Bowen, a four-time All-Defensive Team member; Minnesota Timberwolves’ forward Kevin Garnett, who was named All-Defensive First Team for the fifth consecutive season and Los Angeles Lakers’ guard Kobe Bryant, who made the First Team for the third time.

Artest finished the 2003-04 regular season ranked third in the league in steals (2.08 spg) and successfully held his defensive assignments, including some of the league’s top players, to 8.1 points per game on 9.3 shots per game and .426 shooting. Wallace finished the season ranked second in the league in rebounds (12.4 rpg) and blocks (3.04 bpg) and seventh in steals (1.77 spg), while becoming the first player in NBA history to have four 1,000-rebound, 100-block, 100-steal seasons (2000-01, 2001-02, 2002-03 and 2003-04).

Bowen averaged 1.02 spg, second best on the Spurs and a career-high 3.10 rpg. Garnett led the league in rebounds, averaging a career-high 13.9 rpg and was 11th in blocks (2.17 bpg). Bryant led the Lakers in steals (1.72 spg), the second-best per game average of his career.

The NBA All-Defensive Second Team consists of Utah Jazz forward Andrei Kirilenko, San Antoino Spurs’ forward Tim Duncan, Portland Trail Blazers’ center Theo Ratliff, Sacramento Kings’ guard Doug Christie and New Jersey Nets’ guard Jason Kidd.

Kirilenko earned his first selection to the NBA’s All-Defensive Team, while Ratliff earned his second All-Defensive Team selection. Christie earned his fourth All-Defensive Team honor, while Duncan and Kidd each earned their sixth All-Defensive Team selections.

The voting panel consisted of the NBA’s 29 head coaches, who were asked to select NBA All-Defensive First and Second Teams by position. Coaches were not permitted to vote for players from their own team. Two points were awarded for a First Team vote, and one point was awarded for a Second Team vote.

Below are the results of the balloting for the 2003-04 NBA All-Defensive Teams, with First Team votes in parentheses:

Position Player, Team (First Team Votes) Points
Forward Ron Artest, Indiana (26) 54
Forward Kevin Garnett, Minnesota (16) 40
Center Ben Wallace, Detroit (21) 48
Guard Bruce Bowen, San Antonio (18) 41
Guard Kobe Bryant, L.A. Lakers (13) 31

Position Player, Team (First Team Votes) Points
Forward Andrei Kirilenko, Utah (11) 36
Forward Tim Duncan, San Antonio (10) 33
Center Theo Ratliff, Portland (7) 28
Guard Doug Christie, Sacramento (5) 25
Guard Jason Kidd, New Jersey (3) 15

Other players receiving votes, with point totals (First Team votes in parentheses):
James Posey, Memphis, 13 (4); Eric Snow, Philadelphia, 10 (3); Jermaine O’Neal, Indiana, 9; Clifford Robinson, Golden State, 7 (5); Baron Davis, New Orleans, 5 (2), Chauncey Billups, Detroit, 5; Kenyon Martin, New Jersey, 5 (1), Gary Payton, L.A. Lakers, 4 (1); Shaquille O’Neal, L.A. Lakers, 4 (1); Earl Watson, Memphis, 2; Manu Ginobili, San Antonio, 2; Rasheed Wallace, Detroit, 2 (1); Steve Francis, Houston, 2 (1); Andre Miller, Denver, 1; Bob Sura, Atlanta, 1; Brian Grant, Miami, 1; Darrell Armstrong, New Orleans, 1; Derek Fisher, L.A. Lakers, 1; Greg Ostertag, Utah, 1; Joe Johnson, Phoenix, 1; Kelvin Cato, Houston, 1; Marcus Camby, Denver, 1; Mickael Pietrus, Golden State, 1; P.J. Brown, New Orleans, 1; Richard Jefferson, New Jersey, 1; Shawn Marion, Phoenix, 1; Trenton Hassell, Minnesota, 1.