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Husky senior Matisse Thybulle named finalist for Naismith Defensive Player of the Year

University of Washington guard Matisse Thybulle (4) steals the ball in the first half. The Washington Huskies played the Colorado Buffaloes in a NCAA basketball game at Her Edmundson Pavilion in Seattle, Wash., on Saturday, Feb. 23, 2019.
University of Washington guard Matisse Thybulle (4) steals the ball in the first half. The Washington Huskies played the Colorado Buffaloes in a NCAA basketball game at Her Edmundson Pavilion in Seattle, Wash., on Saturday, Feb. 23, 2019.

Washington senior guard Matisse Thybulle, the two-time Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year, was named a finalist for the Naismith Defensive Player of the Year Award on Thursday.

He’s joined by Duke’s Zion Williamson, Gonzaga’s Brandon Clarke and Virginia’s De’Andre Hunter.

Thybulle leads all the candidates with 182 combined takeaways (110 steals, 72 blocks). He’s just the second player in Pac-12 history to repeat as Defensive Player of the Year. An All-Pac-12 first team and defensive team selection, Thybulle is the only player in 20 years to record 110 steals and 72 blocks.

Thybulle is also the only player in Pac-12 history with two 100-steal seasons. His 110 steals this year set the UW record and tied Jason Kid (Cal, 1992-93) for the conference’s single season-season record.

He currently leads the country with 3.55 steals per game. His 315 career steals also lead all active Division 1 players. Thybulle’s 72 blocks rank 18th in the country and he’s the only player under 6-foot-5 in the top 50.

Thybulle is one of just three players in the last 20 seasons to average 2.0 blocks and 2.0 steals.

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