New York, NY – New York Knicks guard J.R. Smith has been selected as the winner of the NBA's Sixth Man of the Year Award for the 2012-13 season, the league announced Monday.
Smith, who averaged 18.1 points and 5.3 rebounds while coming off the bench for all 80 games he appeared in, garnered 72 of a possible 121 first-place votes and tallied 484 points to easily outdistance Los Angeles Clippers guard and 2009-10 recipient Jamal Crawford in the balloting.
The nine-year pro led all league reserves in scoring, 30-point games (seven) and 20-point efforts (29), while his point total ranked second to NBA scoring champ Carmelo Anthony among members of the Atlantic Division champion Knicks. Smith added 2.7 assists and 1.3 steals per game as an integral part of a New York squad that posted its highest win total (54) since 1996-97 and claimed the No. 2 playoff seed in the Eastern Conference.
Smith is the third Knick to receive the award, which was first instituted during the 1982-83 season, and first since John Starks in 1996-97. Anthony Mason also claimed the honor for the 1994-95 campaign.
Crawford earned 31 first-place votes and 352 points, with Golden State's Jarrett Jack finishing third in the tabulations with 14 first-place votes and 170 points.
James Harden was last year's winner, when the current Houston Rocket was then a member of the Oklahoma City Thunder.