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05 March 2018

NBA Rookie of the Year Countdown

by Real Fans Real Talk - 0 Comments
NBA Rookie of the Year Countdown

With only 20 games or less left to play for the regular season; I will attempt to correctly pick how the rookie of the year (ROY) awards should stack up. Before the season started, I picked Ben Simmons, PG of the Philadelphia 76ers as my choice for ROY. Needless to say he has not disappointed, but there have been a few surprises, including the top 2 choices of the 2017 NBA draft not even cracking the list and quite possibly the biggest surprise is Lakers PF Kyle Kuzma, picked #27 in the draft, having a strong enough season to be a top 5 finalist in the ROY standings; no less ahead of the more famous rookie, Lonzo Ball, PG of the Lakers and the #2 pick of the 2017 NBA draft. With no further-a-do let’s get to the top 5 NBA ROY award projections, starting with number #5

Lauri Markkanen, PF/Chicago Bulls

Averaging 14.9 ppg, 7.6 rebounds and 1.2 assists per game, Markkanen was the centerpiece in a trade for Jimmy Butler to the Timberwolves.  Drafted #7 overall, he has the potential but has proven many critics wrong with having such a productive season.

Number #4

Kyle Kuzma, PF/ LA Lakers

Averaging 15.4 ppg, 5.8 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game he has been quite impressing and polished. To Lakers fans, he has overshadowed Lonzo Ball with his play and has amassed quite a fan base for himself.

Number #3

Jayson Tatum, SF/Boston Celtics

Playing for a winning team helps and Jayson Tatum has been instrumental to the Celtics success. He may not have the biggest numbers among the bunch but the man can play. He has been very efficient and has played well on both sides of the ball.  He averages 13.4 ppg, 5.0 rebounds and 1.4 assists per game and has made GM Danny Ainge look like he knew what he was doing all along.

Number #2

Donovan Mitchell, PG/Utah Jazz

Averaging 19.9 ppg, and 1.5 steals for a rookie is impressive enough, but add slam dunk champion and keeping Utah in the playoff hunt in a stacked Western conference to his ongoing list of rookie accomplishments. DM can flat out ball. He was the #13 pick in the NBA draft and I am pretty certain a fair number of teams would re-do the draft in a heartbeat to select this guy. Most NBA seasons, a guy who has been this good would easily win the award.


Ben Simmons, PG/Philadelphia 76ers

Ben Simmons drafted #1 overall in 2016, missed the entire 2016/17 season, qualifying as a rookie this season. He has drawn comparisons to one of the greatest of all time, Ervin Magic Johnson and not just because he is a tower of a PG, measuring at 6’10 but because the guy can make such great crisp passes and intelligent choices on the court. Simmons along with center, Joel Embiid have led the charge for the 76ers playoff push this year. Despite not being a shooter at all, Simmons has been able to dominate in his own throwback sort of way; averaging 16.5 ppg, 7.7 rebounds, and 7.5 assists, this rookie is a potential triple double threat every night he laces up. At only 21 years old, with good health he is sure to become one of the all-time greats.

Do you agree with this list?

Written By Jonathan Jimenez

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