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With Rookie of the Year honors all but announced let’s project the all-rookie team selections. A place on this roster not only vindicates a players game but also gives credence to their draft selection. Front offices and players alike anticipate these choices with knots in their collective stomachs. The NBA’s 2018-2019 rookie class could be an all-time great class but only time will tell.

All-Rookie Second Team

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Los Angeles Lakers

Landry Shamet, Philadelphia 76ers

Kevin Knox, New York Knicks

Jaren Jackson, Memphis Grizzlies

Mitchell Robinson, New York Knicks

Honorable Mention

Jalen Brunson, Kevin Huerter, and Rodions Kurucs

All-Rookie First Team

Dallas Mavericks v Atlanta Hawks

Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks

The clear cut Rookie of the year is without question the class’s most dynamic player. In concert with his stats, the Slovenian native has accelerated a team rebuilds the Mavericks hope to soon benefit from. Building on such a stellar rookie season will be tough but his track record suggests he is ready for the challenge. After a historical season that compares with Jordan, Oscar, and Kareem his place on the first team roster is no brainier. He is one of ten players to average at least 19 PTS, 6 RB, 4 AST in their inaugural season.

Luka AllTime rookie top10

Trae Young, Atlanta Hawks

A surge in production during the second half of the season catapulted Trae into the first team. An initial shooting slump ignited whispers of disappointment but finishing the season at almost 20 ppg quickly put that narrative to bed. The Hawks point guard also ranked fourth overall in assist per game with 8.1.  The combination of lethal shooting and eagle-eyed passing almost makes last years draft day trade a push but I’m sure most MFFL’s would object.

Player Per Game Table
Rk Player Pos Tm G GS AST
TOV
1 Russell Westbrook PG OKC 73 73 10.7 4.5
2 Kyle Lowry PG TOR 65 65 8.7 2.8
3 Chris Paul PG HOU 58 58 8.2 2.6
4 Trae Young PG ATL 81 81 8.1 3.8
5 Jrue Holiday SG NOP 67 67 7.7 3.1
6 Ben Simmons PG PHI 79 79 7.7 3.5
7 James Harden PG HOU 78 78 7.5 5.0
8 De’Aaron Fox PG SAC 81 81 7.3 2.8
9 Nikola Jokic C DEN 80 80 7.3 3.1
10 D’Angelo Russell PG BRK 81 81 7.0 3.1
Provided by Basketball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 4/14/2019.

Colin Sexton, Cleveland Cavilers

The former Alabama point guard proved to be the Cavs workhorse tallying the most minutes by any rookie (2605). Although the club was relatively unsuccessful the steady progression Sexton showed made him my final selection for the first team. After overcoming a rough start to the season he has recovered and ends the season ranked third among rookies in scoring. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him on the second team either. The scoring point guard has stiff competition for the last spot.

Rookies Table
Per Per Per
Rk Player Debut Age Yrs MP PS/G
TRB AST
1 Luka Doncic Oct 17, ’18, DAL @ PHO 19 1 2318 21.2 7.8 6.0
2 Trae Young Oct 17, ’18, ATL @ NYK 20 1 2503 19.1 3.7 8.1
3 Collin Sexton Oct 17, ’18, CLE @ TOR 20 1 2605 16.7 2.9 3.0
4 Deandre Ayton Oct 17, ’18, PHO vs. DAL 20 1 2183 16.3 10.3 1.8
5 Marvin Bagley Oct 17, ’18, SAC vs. UTA 19 1 1567 14.9 7.6 1.0
Provided by Basketball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 4/14/2019.

Marvin Bagley III, Sacramento Kings

Consistent bench production for a young and talented Kings squad was Bagley’s calling card this year. Throughout the season it was legitimate to predict the Kings as an eight seed in the western conference and he was a significant role in that. The former Tarheel has been quietly impressive leading the team in blocks from the bench in addition to ranking top three in rebounds, blocks, and points for the club. The potential was obvious but the matched production from the bench secured his place on the roster.

Per Game Table
Rk Age TRB BLK PTS/G
1 Buddy Hield 26 5.0 0.4 20.7
2 De’Aaron Fox 21 3.8 0.6 17.3
3 Marvin Bagley 19 7.6 1.0 14.9
4 Harrison Barnes 26 5.5 0.1 14.3
5 Bogdan Bogdanovic 26 3.5 0.2 14.1
6 Willie Cauley-Stein 25 8.4 0.6 11.9
Provided by Basketball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 4/14/2019.

DeAndre Ayton, Phoenix Suns

As the season began many believed Ayton would challenge Doncic for the rookie crown however he cooled off as the season progressed. Many times throughout the season he could disappear making the holes in his game even more visible but averaging a double-double (16 pts & 10 rebs) as a rook can overshadow that. It’s legitimate to expect All-Star appearances from the big man in the future. Rebounding is sure to be essential to his game as he leads all rookies in rebounding in addition to finishing 13th overall rebounding production. A number like these make a first-team selection inevitable.

Player Per Game Table
Rk Player Pos Age Tm ORB DRB TRB
1 Andre Drummond C 25 DET 5.4 10.2 15.6
2 Joel Embiid C 24 PHI 2.5 11.1 13.6
3 DeAndre Jordan C 30 TOT 3.3 9.8 13.1
4 Rudy Gobert C 26 UTA 3.8 9.0 12.9
5 Clint Capela C 24 HOU 4.4 8.2 12.7
6 Giannis Antetokounmpo PF 24 MIL 2.2 10.3 12.5
7 Karl-Anthony Towns C 23 MIN 3.4 9.0 12.4
8 Nikola Vucevic C 28 ORL 2.8 9.2 12.0
9 Hassan Whiteside C 29 MIA 3.6 7.8 11.3
10 Russell Westbrook PG 30 OKC 1.5 9.6 11.1
11 Nikola Jokic C 23 DEN 2.9 8.0 10.8
12 Jusuf Nurkic C 24 POR 3.4 7.0 10.4
13 Deandre Ayton C 20 PHO 3.1 7.1 10.3
14 John Collins PF 21 ATL 3.6 6.2 9.8
15 Enes Kanter C 26 TOT 3.8 6.0 9.8
Provided by Basketball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 4/14/2019.

Photo:  Scott Cunningham/NBAE via Getty Images
Stats:  www.basketball-reference.com

 

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