The Professional Basketball Writers Association (PBWA) named Toronto Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan as the winner of the 2017-18 Magic Johnson Award, which honours the player who best combines excellence on the basketball court with cooperation and dignity in dealing with the media and the public. He joins Chris Bosh (2009-10) as the only players in franchise history to receive the award.
"I'm grateful to the reporters and broadcasters who cover our league, who love our game and who communicate with our fans every day. So thank you to the PBWA for this award," said DeRozan. "It's very special for an L.A. guy to receive an honour named for Magic."
DeRozan averaged a team-best 23.0 points and a career-high 5.2 assists while helping the Raptors to a franchise-record 59 wins during the 2017-18 campaign. He is the longest serving player in franchise history (nine seasons) and helped build an atmosphere of mutual respect and openness in one of the NBA's largest media markets.
Kevin Durant of the Golden State Warriors, Paul George of the Oklahoma City Thunder, Manu Ginobili of the San Antonio Spurs and Al Horford of the Boston Celtics also were finalists for the award.
Members of the Professional Basketball Writers Association selected the winner through a vote.
The PBWA created the Magic Johnson Award in 2001. The association's members continue to regard Earvin "Magic" Johnson of the Los Angeles Lakers as the ideal paradigm for the award.
The PBWA is composed of more than 200 writers and editors who cover the NBA on a regular basis for newspapers, online outlets and magazines.