Thursday, 23 November, 2017

Former UVA All-American Brogdon named NBA Rookie of the Year

Former UVA All-American Brogdon named NBA Rookie of the Year Former UVA All-American Brogdon named NBA Rookie of the Year
Jan Ortega | 01 July, 2017, 00:15

Now, just over a year after falling to the second round, Brogdon is at the forefront of one of the most exciting young teams in the league.

Brogdon made history by becoming the first player not picked in the first round since the common draft era began in 1966 to win the award. After a few struggling years in previous coaching jobs, D'Antoni transformed the Rockets into one of the most exciting teams to watch this past year. Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert and Chris Paul of the L.A. Clippers were also named First Team All-Defense.

Take the names and teams out of it, and just look exclusively at each candidate's season.

In comparison, McGruder averaged 6.4 points, 3.3 rebounds and 1.6 assists in 78 games for Miami. He connected on 47 percent from the field and 37 percent from three-point range.

In the playoffs, Brogdon started all six of Milwaukee's games, led National Basketball Association rookies in the playoffs with 3.5 assists per game, and was second in points (9.0) and rebounds (4.3) per game.

Really, it's not even close based on per-game averages.

For the year, Hield had a solid rookie campaign with both the New Orleans Pelicans and Sacramento Kings.

Apples to oranges in comparing a center, forward and guard, but it's hard to say the first player wasn't the best. He scored a postseason career-high 19 points in Game 2, hitting seven of his 11 shots in the Boston loss. He only made it 31 games, before a knee injury sidelined him for the rest of the season. And had Embiid played a full season without getting injured, there's a good chance that he would've won. He played 53.7 percent of the Sixers' minutes in 2016-17.

Brogdon started 28 games this year and played in 75.

That's why this decision was so hard, and why many people can look at the same stats for the same three players and come up with a totally different conclusion. It's not Rookie of the Half Year.

Embiid obviously would have won the award had he stayed healthy this season.

The 2016 Pac-12 Freshman of the Year wrapped up his first professional season averaging 8.6 points in the final 25 games, including the NBA Playoffs. Now he moves forward as a valued piece of the core of a team that is a rising contender in the Eastern Conference. He was also third in field goal percentage (45.7) and fourth in scoring (10.2 ppg).

Dario Saric and Joel Embiid were the other two candidates. Leonard won the award the last two seasons.

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