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Thunder’s James Harden Wins NBA Sixth Man of the Year Award

NBA via Oklahoma City Thunder(OKLAHOMA CITY) -- Even though he comes off the bench, it is hard to deny the importance that guard James Harden has on the Oklahoma City Thunder, and the NBA has taken notice. The league has rewarded Harden with the NBA's Sixth Man of the Year Award.

Harden averaged 16.8 points per game this season on 49-percent shooting, both of which were career highs. Harden was drafted third overall by the Thunder in 2009, but since the Thunder have players like Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook also in their lineup, the team brings Harden off the bench to add a scoring punch when their two stars are taking a break on the bench.

Harden also set career highs in minutes, three-point shooting percentage, free throw percentage, rebounds, and assists.

Rounding out the voting was Philadelphia 76ers guard Lou Williams, Dallas Mavericks guard Jason Terry, Denver Nuggets forward Al Harrington, and San Antonio Spurs guard Manu Ginobili.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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