Who Has Best Rookie Season- Rubio, Irving, Fredette, or Walker?
One thing that I almost completely forgot about during the extended lockout were the rookies drafted in the 2011 NBA Draft. We heard about current players potentially going overseas and others staying put, but we heard next to nothing about the rookies.
Usually, the rookies expected to impact their teams immediately are hyped and we get an idea of what to expect. But with the shortened camps and preseason, NBA rookies are learning on the fly.
There are four rookie guards who seem to be front runners for Rookie of the Year consideration; Ricky Rubio, Kyrie Irving, Jimmer Fredette and Kemba Walker; who has the best season?
Rubio finds himself in pretty much an ideal situation in Minnesota. He can be a strict facilitator thanks to Kevin Love, Michael Beasley, JJ Barea and rookie Derrick WIlliams because scoring is really not expected from him. After two games coming off the bench, Rubio has 10 assists and three turnovers. A 3 to 1 turnover ratio is exactly what the Wolves envision. Can he do it for an entire NBA season?
Unlike Rubio, the Cavs need Irving to score and be a difference maker immediately because the cupboards in Cleveland are pretty bare. Outside of Antawn Jamison there just aren’t many established scoring options. When Anderson Varejao is expected to score, you get the idea. Through two games Irving’s game has been well rounded in 23 minutes per game, accumulating a rookie leading 7.0 apg, chipping in 10 ppg, 3.5 rpg and 1.5 spg along with only four turnovers.
Of the four rookies, Fredette may have the easiest, most defined role. All he is expected to do is hit three’s from the outside and spread opposing defenses. Anything other than scoring that the Kings get from Fredette is a total bonus. Through two games he’s only shooting 38% from the floor and is one of five on attempts from downtown. But as his comfort level improves, so should his scoring. He’s played the most minutes of any Kings reserve so far. Can follow in the footsteps of 2010 Rookie of The Year and teammate Tyreke Evans and bring the hardware back to Sac-town again in 2011?
Walker, similar to Fredette, is expected to provide pure offensive firepower immediately and so far through two games that’s exactly what he has done, scoring 13.5 ppg. In just about 20 mpg he’s also averaging four rpg and three apg. Walker scored from all angles during his college career and is probably the purest scorer on this list. No one is really sure what to expect from Charlotte this season, which is somewhat similar to what Walker ran into during his senior year at UConn, leading them to a national championship. Walker has the opportunity to put his stamp on this team immediately.
I think Irving and Walker have the best chance at being the most productive and taking home ROY honors because their teams need them to produce.
Who is this year’s Tyreke Evans?
Image Credit: MattBritt00