Monday, April 14, 2014

TPBT Awards: Rookie Of The Year

Next up for our awards segment is the Rookie of the Year award.  This draft class had some surprises like the front runner for the award Michael Carter-Williams.  Trey Burke missed time early in the season but came out of the gate hot after his recovery from his broken thumb.  Victor Oladipo started off slow, coming off the bench but really found his grove late in the season.  Lastly we've had some young players getting tons of playing time due to tanking (Kelly Olynyk) or injuries (Mason Plumlee).  Below are the staff picks.

Michael Carter-Williams – Jacob Noble

This award became closer than expected down the stretch with the improved play of the second place finisher for this award, Victor Oladipo.  I can see why some people would pick him, however it’s hard for me to go against the rookie who led all other rookies in scoring, rebounding, assists and steals per game.  Did I mention he was a top 10 rookie in terms of blocks per game? I know the stat nerds will look at Trey Burke with the best assist to turnover ratio or that MCW played the most minutes but it’s still an award that goes to the player who had the best rookie season, not who is going to be the best player out of this draft class. My vote goes to the guy who has 15 double doubles and 2 triple doubles.  The next closest in double doubles was 8 for Trey Burke.

Victor Oladipo – Snottie Drippen

If this season is a sign of things to come, we'll be having Victor Oladipo vs Michael Carter-Williams comparisons in barbershops and on social media for the next decade. You can't go wrong with either of the dynamic, do-it-all hybrid guards; they both represent the 2nd wave of "new school" ball handlers, the wave that's being ushered in by the Eric Bledsoes, John Walls, Russell Westbrooks, and  Derrick Roses of the game. Both are erratic shooters, both can power through and leap over the defensive efforts of their hapless opponents, and both bring much more than scoring (MCW is racking up 6.1 rpg and 6.3 asts to go with his almost 17 ppg). I'll go with Oladipo by a hair, the 6'5" terror wreaks beautiful havoc nightly, tallying his almost 16-5-5-1.9 stls Per-36 in Westbrookian fashion, a combination of dazzling speed, breathtaking athleticism, and almost primal savagery when he attacks the bucket. The NBA is in good hands, and the future of NBA point guard play is changing before our eyes.

Michael Carter-Williams – Scoop Moore

The lone bright spot in a difficult season for the Sixers, Carter-Williams had a fantastic season leading all rookies in points, rebounds assist and steals. He started his NBA career with an unbelievable stat line of 22 points, 12 assists, seven rebounds and nine steals in a win against the two-time defending champion Miami Heat. Though wins were hard to come by Carter-Williams took control of the reigns early on while his top competition Victor Oladipo, Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr. – suffered through sub .500 seasons as well. Carter-Williams separated himself from the pact. The future is bright for the Sixers particularly with their talented 6’6” point guard leading the way.

Victor Oladipo & Michael Carter-Williams -  Payton Wales

I doubt it will be a co-rookie award year, but I can't pick one. I love how Oladipo plays. It's fearless and almost nasty. He knows he belongs in this league. The same could be said for Williams, who has been consistent and a shining gem in the turd that is the Philadelphia 76ers. The only difference to me is Williams seems to lose that edge from time to time. I wouldn’t call it nights off, just more rookie, deer-in-headlight moments. Both had a lot of turnovers and both shot badly from the field, but Oladipo was the one who seemed to push it more consistently on defense, which is what pulls him in line with Williams for me. Maybe that's a cop-out, but what can I say. I love the way both of these guys played.

Michael Carter-Williams – Ben Kenna

Great stats on one of the worst teams in the history of the NBA.  Most rookies stunk this year, so MCW can enjoy the award in a stinky year.

Michael Carter-Williams – James Bucklin

I know the 76ers didn't win many games, but consider this. LeBron James' rookie season: 20.9 ppg, 5.9 apg, 5.5 rpg, 1.6 spg and 0.7 bpg. Michael Carter-Williams' rookie season: 16.7 ppg, 6.3 apg, 6.1 rpg, 1.9 spg and 0.6 bpg. Close enough to be impressed by the rookie.


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