Luke Ridnour Named NBA Sportsmanship Award Finalist

The NBA today announced that Minnesota Timberwolves guard Luke Ridnour was named one of the six divisional finalists for the 2011-12 NBA Sportsmanship Award. In addition to Ridnour, Cleveland’s Antawn Jamison, Dallas’ Jason Kidd, the Los Angeles Clippers’ Chris Paul, Miami’s Shane Battier and New York’s Jeremy Lin were selected by a five-member panel of former players as divisional winners for this season's NBA Sportsmanship Award.

The NBA Sportsmanship Award, designed to honor a player who best represents the ideals of sportsmanship on the court, is voted on by NBA players. The NBA will announce the winner after the regular season.

The 2011-12 NBA Sportsmanship Award winner will be presented with the Joe Dumars Trophy, named after the Hall of Famer and former Detroit Pistons great who played 14 seasons in the NBA and was the recipient of the inaugural NBA Sportsmanship Award in 1996. The six-time All-Star was selected in honor of his distinguished and dignified career and for symbolizing the tradition the NBA wants to recognize with this award.

Former NBA players Greg Anthony, John Crotty, Antonio Davis, Eddie Johnson and Kenny Smith selected the six divisional winners from a pool of 30 team nominees. Each team nominated one of its players for this award.

The annual award reflects the ideals of sportsmanship -- ethical behavior, fair play and integrity -- in amateur and professional basketball, a key focus of the league’s NBA Cares program efforts.

Ridnour, in his second season with the Timberwolves and ninth in the NBA, is averaging a career-high 12.1 points, 2.7 rebounds and 4.8 assists in 53 games (all starts) this season. He ranks 6th in the NBA this year in free-throw percentage (.891) and 26th in assists per game.

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