Can Boston Celtics G win back-to-back Sixth Man of the Year awards?

Boston Celtics guard Malcolm Brogdon is looking like he could be back-to-back Sixth Man of the Year -- but what do the odds say about his chances? (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
Boston Celtics guard Malcolm Brogdon is looking like he could be back-to-back Sixth Man of the Year -- but what do the odds say about his chances? (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /

Will Boston Celtics guard Malcolm Brogdon win back-to-back NBA Sixth Man of the Year awards?

The award season the year after joining the Boston Celtics, Malcolm Brogdon won the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year award, donning the iconic green jersey and the weight it carried and quickly establishing himself as the premier choice coming off the bench.

His prowess on the court proved his worth to fans and critics alike with an impressive first season, leaving little doubt about his value to the team. In his award-winning season, Brogdon averaged an impressive 14.9 PPG, 4.2 RPG, 3.7 APG, and 0.7 SPG in only 26 minutes per night.

It’s clear to see why the Sixth Man of the Year award came back with him to Boston. With that, the question then looms: Can he excel to the same heights off the bench, winning the award back-to-back?

Let’s take a look.

Who are the favorites to win the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year award this season?

Well, according to DraftKings Sportsbook odds, Brogdon is the No. 2 favorite to lift the award this year, falling just short of the New York Knicks guard, Immanuel Quickley. Let’s look at the odds.

  • Immanuel Quickley: +700
  • Malcolm Brogdon: +800
  • Norman Powell: +1000
  • Bobby Portis: +1500
  • Malik Monk: +1500
  • Chris Paul: +1600

Quickly emerges as the slight favorite to win the award after a respectable season as the rotational backup to Jalen Brunson, averaging 14.9 PPG, 4.2 RPG, and 3.4 APG in 28.9 minutes per game for the New York Knicks. An imminent jump in Quickley’s game is the prediction from betting outlets as he gears up for next season.

While some eyebrows might be raised at Chris Paul coming in at No. 6, we have to take into account that the now seasoned 38-year-old veteran has seen his prime days come and go, resulting in a change of role after his move to Golden State. Now shouldering this new role as the backup option to Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, the question arises: Can Paul excel in his role as the sixth man? According to DraftKings, the likelihood of him doing enough in that role to secure the award is not favorable.

Why isn’t Brogdon the favorite? Well, his absence from the odds-on favorite position may have a deeper reason, extending beyond Quickley’s anticipated leap next season.

Will the attempted trade be a factor in Malcolm Brogdon’s season with the Boston Celtics?

The off-season for Boston was anything but mundane, leaving fans holding their breath in anticipation of what twists and turns might be around the corner. This was most notable during their pursuit of the towering seven-foot-three Latvian, Kristaps Porzingis, which ultimately concluded the Boston Celtics tenure of Marcus Smart; who departed Beantown as a part of a complex 3-team trade, landing him in Memphis with the Grizzlies.

That wasn’t the original plan when it came to obtaining Porzingis this off-season. Brogdon was on the verge of heading West to assist Kawhi Leanard and Paul George in their pursuit of bringing success to the LA Clippers, but the trade came to an abrupt halt due to their injury concerns regarding the Celtics guard.

Will the thoughts of previously being on the Boston Celtics’ trade block be a factor in Brogdon’s abilities in the upcoming season? I don’t think they will. He is both aware and accepting of his role as a crucial rotational player within a team whose sights are firmly set on winning it all next season. Allowing the trade thoughts to linger in his mind could potentially hinder his team’s chances of success.

In an interview with TNT, Ernie Johnson asked Brogdon about his mindset towards going from a starter in Indiana to coming off the bench in Boston.

"“You know, a lot of what happens between the lines out here is about ego, if you can check your ego at the door, a lot of the time, youre going to be better off.” Brogdon explained. “When the trade happened, i talked to Brad Stephens and they told me straight up that – ‘you’re going to be coming off the bench, we have a formula here, we have something that works. We think you can be a key piece and really help us, but your role is going to be coming off the bench’ – and i chose to embrace it”"

Can Malcolm Brogdon do enough to secure a second straight NBA Sixth Man of the Year award?

I think he can. As long as Brogdon can stay healthy and move past the attempted trade, nothing can stop him from playing at his best, and in the process, bring individual and team success with him. He is a crucial part of the Boston Celtics rotation.

Staying healthy and continuing to embrace his role is of the utmost importance if he wants to assist in hanging Banner 18 in the rafters of TD Garden and lift the Sixth Man of the Year award for the second year in a row. It’s his for the taking, and I think he has what it takes.