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Award-winning NBA writing

Over the weekend, the president of the Professional Basketball Writers Association, Doug Smith, announced the winners of the organization's annual writing awards. Members nominated several dozen stories which were judged, this year, by a committee of editors at the Toronto Star, where Doug works.

Winners were announced in three categories (a discussion is underway about adding a fourth, internet-based category in the future):

Game stories

  1. Brian Windhorst of the Akron Beacon-Journal (now of ESPN.com) on "the wreck that remained the Cavaliers" after the team lost Game 5 to the Celtics.

  2. Marc Stein of ESPN.com on Steve Nash needing just one good eye to eliminate the Spurs.

  3. Jerry Zgoda of the Minneapolis Star Tribune on Magic Johnson's visit with a struggling young Timberwolves' team.

Columns

  1. NBA.com's Scott Howard-Cooper on Ron Artest's embrace of mental health issues.

  2. Mike Monroe of the San Antonio Express News on George Karl's recovery from cancer.

  3. NBA.com's Steve Aschburner on following just about every step of Kevin Garnett's career.

Features

  1. K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune on Joakim Noah's motivation.

  2. Marc Spears of Yahoo on Chris Washburn, who was robbed, by drugs, of a chance to be a legend.

  3. Brad Rock of the Deseret News on one of Utah's most underappreciated athletes, Ticky Burden.