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Azuolas Tubelis named finalist for Karl Malone Award

arizona-wildcats-mens-college-basketball-azuolas-tubelis-karl-malone-award-drew-timme-deandre-ayton Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

He didn’t win Pac-12 Player of the Year, which is debatable. But what isn’t is that Azuolas Tubelis is one of the best players in the country at his position.

Tubelis is one of five finalists for the Karl Malone Award, given to college basketball’s top power forward.

he 6-foot-11 junior led the Pac-12 in scoring (19.9 points per game) and rebound (9.2), shooting 57.7 percent from the field. He earned all-conference honors but lost out to UCLA’s Jaime Jaquez Jr. for Player of the Year.

Joining Tubelis on the finalist list are Providence’s Bryce Hopkins, Indiana’s Trayce Jackson-Davis, Iowa’s Kris Murray and Gonzaga’s Drew Timme. Timme won the award in 2021, while Murray’s twin brother Keegan Murray was the 2022 winner.

Deandre Ayton won the award in 2018.

Tubelis, who on Friday was also named one of 24 finalists for the Lute Olson National Player of the Year Award, and second-seeded Arizona (25-6) take on No. 10 Stanford (14-18) in the Pac-12 Tournament quarterfinals at 7 p.m. MT in Las Vegas.