Los Angeles Clippers guard Chauncey Billups became the first-ever recipient of the NBA’s Twyman-Stokes Teammate of the Year Award on Sunday.
“I pride myself in being a good human being and a good teammate, and obviously this is a Teammate of the Year Award, but I think more importantly, it’s about just being a good person,” the five-time All-Star and 2004 NBA Finals MVP said after receiving the award.
Billups received the award in a ceremony before Game 2 of the NBA Finals between the Miami Heat and San Antonio Spurs at AmericanAirlines Arena in Miami. NBA players selected the 16-year veteran as the inaugural winner of the award, “which recognizes the NBA player deemed the best teammate based on selfless play, on and off-court leadership as a mentor and role model to other NBA players, and his commitment and dedication to his team,” according to the league. The NBA will make a $25,000 donation to the charity of Billups’ choice in recognition of the honor.
“I can’t think of a player who is more deserving and who embodies the virtues of this award than our first-ever recipient,” NBA Commissioner David Stern said Sunday. “He is a leader, a selfless player who has rightfully earned the trust and respect of his teammates throughout his career.”
Billups is known as not only a locker room buffer between coaching staffs and players but also a player that can help soothe tensions between teammates.