Hawks’ Bogdanovic sixth in NBA Sixth Man of Year voting

Hawks' guard Bogdan Bogdanovic (13) shoots a 3-point basket during the second half in the NBA play-in tournament at State Farm Arena on Wednesday, April 13, 2022.  (Hyosub Shin / Hyosub.Shin@ajc.com)

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Hawks' guard Bogdan Bogdanovic (13) shoots a 3-point basket during the second half in the NBA play-in tournament at State Farm Arena on Wednesday, April 13, 2022. (Hyosub Shin / Hyosub.Shin@ajc.com)

Hawks guard Bogdan Bogdanovic was sixth in voting for the NBA Sixth Man of the Year Award on Tuesday.

Bogdanovic averaged 15.1 points, four rebounds and just over three assists per game for the Hawks in 2021-22.

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Miami’s Tyler Herro won the award. He averaged 20.7 points, nearly four more per game than any other reserve in the league, plus had a huge role in Miami securing the No. 1 seed for the Eastern Conference playoffs.

“It means a lot,” Herro said. “I accepted the sixth-man role for a reason. I wanted to be the best sixth man in the league.”

By overwhelming agreement of the 100 sportswriters and broadcasters who cover the league and vote on season-ending awards, that’s what Herro was. He received 96 first-place votes and 488 total points, well ahead of runner-up Kevin Love of the Cleveland Cavaliers. Cameron Johnson of the Phoenix Suns was third.

Bogdanovic received three second-place votes and one third-place vote. He also finished behind Jordan Clarkson of the Jazz and Luke Kannard of the Clippers in the voting.

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Hawks' Bogdan Bogdanovic celebrates during the second half of the team's NBA play-in basketball game against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday, April 15, 2022, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Nick Cammett)

Credit: AP

Hawks' Bogdan Bogdanovic celebrates during the second half of the team's NBA play-in basketball game against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday, April 15, 2022, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Nick Cammett)

Credit: AP

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Hawks' Bogdan Bogdanovic celebrates during the second half of the team's NBA play-in basketball game against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday, April 15, 2022, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Nick Cammett)

Credit: AP

Credit: AP

Love got three first-place votes and 214 points in the system where players received five points for a first-place nod, three for second place and one for third. Johnson got one first-place vote and 128 points.

“Tyler was ignitable for this team,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. “He was that way all season.”

Herro had eight 30-point games off the bench this season, more than any other three players did combined. The last time a reserve had more than eight 30-point games was 2017-18, when Lou Williams had 11 for the Los Angeles Clippers. Before that, it was 1989-90, when Ricky Pierce had 17 for Milwaukee.

And in those years, Pierce and Williams — two of the best sixth men ever — wound up winning the award that Herro received Tuesday. Herro got the official word in a ceremony during practice Tuesday morning, with teammate Udonis Haslem serving as the presenter.

“When you come in and you’re going to be the featured player, that, to me, is a better role than a starting role in a lot of ways,” said Philadelphia coach Doc Rivers, whose 76ers are facing Herro and the Heat in an Eastern Conference semifinal series that resumes Wednesday. Miami leads the series 1-0, with Herro scoring 25 points in the opener Monday night.

Sixth Man was the fourth major award to be announced this offseason, joining Most Improved (Memphis’ Ja Morant), Rookie of the Year (Toronto’s Scottie Barnes) and Defensive Player of the Year (Boston’s Marcus Smart).

Still to come: Coach of the Year (Spoelstra, Phoenix’s Monty Williams and Memphis’ Taylor Jenkins are the finalists), and MVP (either Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid, Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo and Denver’s reigning MVP Nikola Jokic).