Thursday , Apr , 28 , 2005 C.Y. Ellis

NBA names Simmons Most Improved Player

New York, NY (Sports Network) – Los Angeles Clippers guard/forward Bobby
Simmons captured the NBA’s Most Improved Player award on Thursday.

Simmons is the first Clipper to earn the honor since the award was presented
after the 1985-86 season. Despite playing on a losing squad, Simmons easily
topped Miami All-Star Dwyane Wade and Detroit’s Tayshaun Prince to capture the
award.

Simmons, who will become an unrestricted free agent this summer, posted a
career-highs in points (16.4), rebounds (5.9) and assists (2.7) in 75 games,
including 74 starts.

In his first season with the Clippers, Simmons netted 7.8 points per-game to
go along with 4.7 boards per-contest in 56 games.

The DePaul product was a second-round draft choice of the Seattle SuperSonics
in 2001 before being traded to Washington. His numbers were non-existent
during his first two campaigns with the Wizards, averaging just 3.5 points-per
game in a total of 66 games over two seasons.

Simmons, who received a total of 384 points, including 59 first-place votes
from a panel of sports writers and broadcasters, collected 10 double-doubles
this season and scored at least 20 or more points 23 times this season.

Wade garnered 129 points to finish second, while Prince tallied 107 points to
end third in the voting.

LAC