NEW YORK, April 14, 2016 – Los Angeles D-Fenders forward Ryan Gomes was today named the 2015-16 NBA Development League Impact Player of the Year, as voted on by the league’s 19 head coaches. The award recognizes a player who joined an NBA D-League team after Nov. 26, 2015, and made the greatest contribution to his team’s success following that in-season acquisition.
Gomes (6-7, 245, Providence) joined the D-Fenders, the NBA D-League affiliate of the Los Angeles Lakers, on Jan. 7, 2016, and played his first game on Jan. 9, 19 games into the 2015-16 season. He appeared in the team’s next 31 games (28 starts), averaging 18.2 points, 8.1 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 32.0 minutes. He scored in double figures 28 times, including two 30-plus point outings, and recorded nine double-doubles.
Gomes helped the D-Fenders to a 27-23 regular-season record and the fourth overall seed in the NBA D-League Western Conference Playoffs. The team defeated the Reno Bighorns 2-1 in the Conference Semifinals and will face the Austin Spurs in the best-of-three Conference Finals.
An eight-year NBA veteran, Gomes was selected by the Boston Celtics in the second round (50th overall pick) of the 2005 NBA Draft. Gomes owns NBA career averages of 10.1 points, 4.6 rebounds and 27.6 minutes in 487 games with the Celtics, Minnesota Timberwolves, Los Angeles Clippers and Oklahoma City Thunder.
Gomes will be presented with the Impact Player of the Year Trophy prior to tonight’s NBA D-League Western Conference Finals game against the Spurs. Tipoff is set for 10:30 p.m. ET.
All-Time NBA D-League Impact Players of the Year:
Jerel McNeal (Bakersfield Jam, 2014-15)
Ike Diogu (Bakersfield Jam, 2013-14)
Rasual Butler (Tulsa 66ers, 2012-13)
Eric Dawson (Austin Toros, 2011-12)
Jeff Adrien (Rio Grande Valley Vipers, 2010-11)
Brian Butch (Bakersfield Jam, 2009-10)
Eddie Gill (Colorado 14ers, 2008-09)
Morris Almond (Utah Flash, 2007-08)