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NBA Most Improved Player finalists for 2021-22 season

Here’s a look at the three finalists for the league’s most improved player.

San Antonio Spurs v New Orleans Pelicans - Play-In Tournament
Dejounte Murray of the San Antonio Spurs stands on the court prior to the start of the 2022 NBA Play-In Tournament against the New Orleans Pelicans at Smoothie King Center on April 13, 2022 in New Orleans, Louisiana.
Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images

The NBA has released its finalists for season awards and the Most Improved Player category features three first-time All-Stars. Cleveland Cavaliers guard Darius Garland, Memphis Grizzlies guard Ja Morant and San Antonio Spurs guard Dejounte Murray are the finalists in the category, which has always been viewed with some skepticism because the criteria is not quite clear.

Garland took a massive leap, leading the Cavaliers to the playoffs in what was supposed to be another down season. Morant improved on his already stellar stats while helping the Grizzlies capture the No. 2 seed in the West. Murray’s Spurs were able to make the play-in tournament but got bounced in the first game by the Pelicans.

This is likely going to come down to Garland and Morant, with Murray being included as a somewhat under-the-radar name. The Cavaliers guard has a slight edge, largely because his jump this season was more unexpected than Morant’s.