Who ever said the “experts” knew what they were talking about? After getting drafted behind the likes of Victor Oladipo, Otto Porter, Cody Zeller, Ben McLemore, Trey Burke and C.J. McCollum, Philadelphia 76ers rookie guard Michael Carter-Williams was an afterthought when projecting the top rookies in the 2013 NBA draft class. However, after opening the 2013-14 NBA season with a cool 22 points, 12 assists and seven rebounds in a four-point victory over the two-time defending NBA champion Miami Heat, he put
From his first NBA game, Michael Carter-Williams took hold of the Rookie of the Year award. He immediately grabbed the undivided attention of all of us, going for 22 points, 12 assists, nine steals and seven rebounds in Philadelphia’s improbable season-opening win over the two-time defending champion Miami Heat. Before the 76ers started losing – losing frequently, losing historically – Carter-Williams directed his team to two more wins and was named Eastern Conference Player of the Week. Not Rookie of the Week.
There’s been some talk lately that the 2013 draft could be the worst in NBA history. We could wait more than a year before jumping into the adjoining worlds of shortsightedness and hyperbole, couldn’t we? Yes, this was a bad draft. We’ve said it ourselves several times. For the first time since 2001, the top pick is going to average less than five points per game. For the first time since 1988, the Rookie of the Year is probably going to be
We have reached the point of the season where teams that are out of the playoff race start giving more playing time to their younger players to see what they may have. One of those teams is the Minnesota Timberwolves, who may have something in rookie big man Gorgui Dieng. New Timberwolves GM Flip Saunders spent the offseason loading his roster with veterans such as Kevin Martin, Corey Brewer and Ronny Turiaf in hope of making the playoffs for the first time
While Victor Oladipo and Trey Burke chase Michael Carter-Williams for Rookie of the Year, a handful of other rookies are helping their teams chase postseason berths and higher seeds. The Eastern Conference has three teams in the playoff chase whose finish will be somewhat impacted by the play of their rookies. The Western Conference has five teams in the hunt with rookies playing a prominent role. The team relying most on rookies is undoubtedly the Atlanta Hawks, who have two rookies in
First, the good news. Among rookies, the top four scorers behind Philadelphia’s Michael Carter-Williams all got a recent chance to pad their stats against the sickening 76ers. Now, the bad news. Only one gets another chance this season. In case you haven’t noticed, the Sixers have lost 18 straight games. The last time they won, Time Warner and Comcast hadn’t announced their merger, the Super Bowl hadn’t been played and the greatest single-take shot in television history hadn’t yet aired.
The best thing about top overall pick Anthony Bennett’s tremendously disappointing rookie season is that it has provided cover for some tremendously disappointing seasons by other rookies. Namely, Otto Porter. Porter was taken third in the 2013 draft by the Washington Wizards and has been worse than Bennett. Much worse. Bennett is averaging 4.2 points and 3.0 rebounds while shooting just 35 percent from the floor. Pedestrian numbers, for sure, and unacceptable for a top pick who is expected to contribute right away. But
We asked this question in our last edition of the Rookie Rankings: Can a player from a 65-loss team win Rookie of the Year? The answer: One already has. In the 1999-2000 season, the Chicago Bulls were continuing their rebuilding following the second retirement of Michael Jordan and went 17-65. One of their few bright spots was a young power forward named Elton Brand, who averaged 20.1 points and 10.1 rebounds and shared Rookie of the Year honors with Houston’s Steve Francis. But