– Canadian Forward Becomes First Player to Win Both Awards in Same Season –
NEW YORK, April 1, 2019 – Raptors 905 forward Chris Boucher has been named the 2018-19 NBA G League Most Valuable Player and the 2018-19 NBA G League Defensive Player of the Year. He becomes the first player to win both awards in the same season. The Canadian is also the first international player to earn MVP honors.
Boucher (6-11, 200, Oregon), who signed a two-way contract with the Toronto Raptors last October before having it converted to a standard NBA contract in February, averaged 27.2 points, 11.4 rebounds and 4.1 blocked shots and shot 51.0 percent from the field in 28 games with Raptors 905. Among players who appeared in at least 28 games, Boucher ranked third in scoring, sixth in rebounding and first in blocks. Raptors 905 went 20-8 with him in the lineup and 29-21 overall.
In his second NBA G League season, Boucher helped lead Raptors 905 to the fourth-best record in the Eastern Conference. In the first round of the 2019 NBA G League Playoffs, Boucher recorded a near triple-double of 12 points, 12 rebounds and nine blocks to lift Raptors 905 past the Grand Rapids Drive 91-90 in overtime. On Friday, the team lost to the Long Island Nets in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.
A 2018-19 Midseason All-NBA G League Team selection, Boucher registered 10 games with at least 30 points, including a career-high 47 points against the Oklahoma City Blue on Dec. 12. Boucher grabbed 15 or more rebounds five times and blocked five or more shots 12 times. He anchored a team that ranked second in the NBA G League in net rating (4.2) and third in defensive rating (104.0).
Boucher, who was not selected in the 2017 NBA Draft, has appeared in 24 games with the Raptors this season. He began his professional career on a two-way contract with the Golden State Warriors in 2017-18. Last season in the NBA G League, he averaged 11.8 points, 7.5 rebounds and 2.1 blocks in 20 games with the Santa Cruz Warriors.
Boucher will be presented with the MVP and Defensive Player of the Year awards tonight before Toronto hosts the Orlando Magic at Scotiabank Arena.
Each NBA G League head coach and general manager voted for both the MVP and Defensive Player of the Year awards. Long Island forward Alan Williams, a two-way player with the Brooklyn Nets, finished second in the MVP voting. Houston Rockets center Isaiah Hartenstein, who played 26 games with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers while on assignment, was third.
In NBA G League Defensive Player of the Year voting, Long Island guard Tahjere McCall finished second and Delaware Blue Coats center Norvel Pelle was third.