NEW YORK, May 1 -- Gilbert Arenas of the Golden State Warriors was named the winner of the 2002-03 NBA Most Improved Player Award, the NBA announced today. The annual award is presented to a player who has made a dramatic improvement from the previous season or seasons.

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Arenas is the first Golden State Warrior to be honored with the Most Improved Player Award since it was presented following the 1985-86 season. In addition to Arenas, three other Warriors received votes this year, including Troy Murphy, who finished third in voting, Earl Boykins and Antawn Jamison.

Arenas is one of four Warriors to get Most Improved votes.
Rocky Widner/NBAE/Getty Images
In only his second NBA season, Arenas was one of only eight players in the NBA who averaged at least 18.0 points, 5.5 assists and 4.5 rebounds. He improved his scoring average from last season by 7.4 points per game (10.9 to 18.3), his assists average by 2.6 assists per game (3.7 to 6.3), his rebounding average by 1.9 rebounds per game (2.8 to 4.7) and minutes played by 10.5 minutes per game (24.5 to 35.0).

He started all 82 games for Golden State, leading the Warriors in scoring in 28 games, in assists 55 times and in steals 36 times. He also led the team in assists (6.3) and steals (1.51), while finishing second in minutes played.

Under first-year head coach Eric Musselman, the 2002-03 Warriors posted the biggest turnaround in the NBA this season, improving to a 38-44 overall mark, the teamís best record since the 1993-94 (50-32) season and a 17-win improvement from last yearís 21-61 record.

Arenas received a total of 288 points, including 41 first-place votes, from a panel of 118 sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada. Utahís Matt Harpring finished second with 234 points (29 first-place votes) and Murphy was third with 144 points (18 first-place votes. 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 received.

A second round selection in the 2001 NBA Draft (31st overall pick), Arenas turned in 11 double-double performances this season and became the first Warrior to get 15 assists (Nov. 11 vs. Memphis) in a single game since Mookie Blaylock dished out 16 against New York in 2001. He also posted a career-high 41 points versus Washington on March 23.

Attached are the voting results for this yearís NBA Most Improved Player Award and the all-time list of winners.


Player, Team1st2nd3rdPts
Gilbert Arenas, Golden State412411288
Matt Harpring, Utah292417234
Troy Murphy, Golden State181315144
Tony Parker, San Antonio141916143
Ricky Davis, Cleveland210343
Chauncey Billups, Detroit36942
Jason Williams, Memphis36740
Richard Jefferson, New Jersey22723
Troy Hudson, Minnesota12314
Corey Maggette, LA Clippers02612
Bobby Jackson, Sacramento03211
Michael Redd, Milwaukee1119
Ron Artest, Indiana1027
Dirk Nowitzki, Dallas1005
Andrei Kirilenko, Utah1005
Jermaine O'Neal, Indiana1005
Stephon Marbury, Phoenix0125
Stephen Jackson, San Antonio0044
Tracy McGrady, Orlando0114
Brad Miller, Indiana0114
Kevin Garnett, Minnesota0103
Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Cleveland0103
Brent Barry, Seattle0103
Eric Snow, Philadelphia0033
Earl Boykins, Golden State0022
Steve Nash, Dallas0011
Antawn Jamison, Golden State0011
Radoslav Nesterovic, Minnesota0011
Anfernee Hardaway, Phoenix0011
Stromile Swift, Memphis0011
Dion Glover, Atlanta0011


1985-86 Alvin Robertson, San Antonio
1986-87 Dale Ellis, Seattle
1987-88 Kevin Duckworth, Portland
1988-89 Kevin Johnson, Phoenix
1989-90 Rony Seikaly, Miami
1990-91 Scott Skiles, Orlando
1991-92 Pervis Ellison, Washington
1992-93 Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf, Denver
1993-94 Don MacLean, Washington
1994-95 Dana Barros, Philadelphia
1995-96 Gheorghe Muresan, Washington
1996-97 Isaac Austin, Miami
1997-98 Alan Henderson, Atlanta
1998-99 Darrell Armstrong, Orlando
1999-00 Jalen Rose, Indiana
2000-01 Tracy McGrady, Orlando
2001-02 Jermaine OíNeal, Indiana
2002-03 Gilbert Arenas, Golden State