Gilgeous-Alexander wins Northern Star award as Canada's top athlete

TORONTO — Basketball star Shai Gilgeous-Alexander has won the Northern Star Award as Canada's athlete of the year in 2023.

He beat out Edmonton Oilers superstar Connor McDavid, RBC Canadian Open champion Nick Taylor, hammer thrower Camryn Rogers and swimmer Summer McIntosh for the award.

Gilgeous-Alexander is the second basketball player to win the award. Steve Nash won it in 2005.

The honour is given out annually by the Toronto Star and voted on by sports journalists from across Canada.

Gilgeous-Alexander averaged 31.4 points, 5.5 assists, 4.8 rebounds and 1.6 steals for the Oklahoma City Thunder last season.

He's kept that pace this season, averaging 30.5 points, 6.2 assists, 5.6 rebounds and 2.8 steals over 20 games for the Thunder this year.

The 25-year-old guard from Hamilton was also instrumental in Canada's men's basketball team qualifying for the 2024 Paris Olympics.

He was named to the all-tournament team at the FIBA World Cup after leading Canada to bronze at the international men's basketball event.

Gilgeous-Alexander averaged 26.3 points, 4.7 assists and four rebounds at the World Cup.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 11, 2023.

The Canadian Press