Top 15 NBA Sixth Men

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Top 15 NBA Sixth Men Award Candidates

Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

The NBA Sixth Man of the Year Award, the award that arguably recognizes the most valuable substitute.

An award that says, “well we don’t think you’re good enough to start but you’re the best bench warmers in the entire league.”

Yet, the NBA sixth man might be the hardest role on the team. Sixth men normally don’t get an excess of plays run for them.

They must take control of the game while starters rest. Sixth men are expected to do the most with the least. While knowing, deep down inside that they could start. Sixth men are typically capable of starting but put the team before themselves.

Sixth men must maintain the lead the starters have established. Imagine, having to walk back to a huddle and face LeBron James, Kevin Garnett or Chris Paul after you have let their lead slip away?

Sixth men face all of the responsibility that a starter has without the recognition or support of the starting line up. Metta World Peace once said that he didn’t talk to reserves when media asked him if he had apologized to James Harden for elbowing him in the face and causing him a concession.

In reality, if Harden and World Peace played for the same team, Harden would without a doubt start over World Peace.

The sixth man is a tough role to fill but a number of players fit the position perfectly, going above and beyond the expectations of any other reserve.

Who are the 15 best Sixth Men in the league?

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15. Derrick Favors

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Derrick Favors comes through at the foul line.

He is productive enough and provides good offence.

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14. Jason Terry

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Jason Terry went to a team that had just lost Ray Allen so he has huge shoes to fill. Terry has a lot to prove but he gets the job done as a role player.

Terry fully commits to the Sixth Man position.

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13. Ryan Anderson

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Ryan Anderson is a leader and he's aiding the rebuilding of the New Orleans Hornets/Pelicans franchise.

He fills the position of big man when the Pelicans/Hornets need him too but he also can fill a number of different roles depending on the team's needs.

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12. Taj Gibson

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Taj Gibson is an important member of the crew working extra time to make up for the injured Derrick Rose.

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11. Lou Williams

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Lou Williams will be a very serious candidate for the Sixth Man of the Year Award. This season, Williams has been pulling career high numbers. Williams is very agressive and he is the guy who is going to get the ball at clutch moments.

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10. Kevin Martin

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Kevin Martin has to fill James Harden's shoes. Martin's a decent midrange shot and is the most efficient scorer in the NBA this season

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9. Marshon Brooks

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Every minute Marshon Brooks is off the bench, he's hot.

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8. Jeff Green

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Jeff Green has become a vital part of Boston's success. He stands to be a huge part of the team's future.

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7. Antawn Jamison

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Antawn Jamison carries the Los Angeles Lakers weak bench's productivity on his shoulders.

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6. Michael Beasley

Greg Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Coming off the bench suits Michael Beasley better than starting. Despite all of the issues and struggles, he's an outstanding sixth man.

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5. Thaddeus Young

Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Averaging 7.2 rebounds and 15.2 points per game, Thaddeus Young has been keeping the Philadelphia 76ers alive while Andrew Bynum is still out of the line up due to injury.

Young’s defense is consistently improving on defense and has been moved up to the starting line up to make up for Bynum.

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4. Manu Ginobili

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Manu Ginobili is one of the best passers in the league. He provides a very international style of play that fits successfully into the team's niche.

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3. Ray Allen

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Ray Allen is a former core member of the Boston Celtics.

Allen provides experience, leadership and a wealth of 3-pointers.

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2. JR Smith

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J.R. Smith is a clutch player who provides buzzer beater 3-pointers.

The New York Knicks would be hard pressed to find a better sixth man

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1. Jamal Crawford

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Jamal Crawford is the Los Angeles Clippers leading scorer.

He consistently bails his team out and provides Chris Paul unmatched offensive support, especially from outside the paint.