By February 17, 2013 Read More →

Abrams, McMenamin and Thomsen win in 2012 PBWA Best Writing Contest

HOUSTON — Jonathan Abrams, Dave McMenamin and Ian Thomsen have been named first-place winners of the 2012 PBWA Best Writing Contest, which honors the best writing by members of the Professional Basketball Writers Association.

Abrams, of Grantland, won the Features category for his oral history of The Malice at the Palace, the Nov. 2004 fight involving the Indiana Pacers, Detroit Pistons and Pistons fans during a regular-season game at the Palace of Auburn Hills.

McMenamin, who writes for, took first place in the Game Story category for his account of Game 1 of the Western Conference semifinal series between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Thomsen, of Sports Illustrated, received top honors in the Columns category for a piece about LeBron James following the Miami Heat’s final victory in the 2012 NBA Finals.

The PBWA holds the contest annually. The organization’s active members are eligible to enter one piece of work in each of the three categories. An independent judge evaluates the work.

This year’s winners were announced prior to the 2013 NBA All-Star Game at the Toyota Center.

The PBWA comprises approximately 125 writers who cover the NBA on a regular basis for newspapers, Internet services and magazines.

Results for the 2012 PBWA Best Writing Contest

Game Story
1st Place: Dave McMenamin,, “Lakers Helped Launch Thunder”
2nd Place: Benjamin Hochman, The Denver Post, “Nuggets Defeat Melo, Knicks in Double-Overtime Thriller”
3rd Place: Steve Aschburner,, “Twelve Bad Minutes End Celtics Season … And Maybe More”

1st Place: Ian Thomsen, Sports Illustrated, “James’ Title Is Sweet Redemption”
2nd Place: Kevin Ding, Orange County Register, “See Jeremy Lin’s Impact Through the Inspired Eyes of a Child”
3rd Place: Fran Blinebury,, “Nostalgia Runs Deep in Yao’s Bittersweet Return to Houston”

1st Place: Jonathan Abrams, Grantland, “The Malice at the Palace: An Oral History of the Scariest Moment in NBA History”
2nd Place: Kevin Arnovitz,, “The Man Behind Clippers’ Rise”
3rd Place: Marc Stein,, “How Steve Nash Became a Laker”

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