NBA Rookie of the Year 2013-2014: From 80 players down to the Top15

(Internally: "What am I doing in this post?") - David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Which rookies are making noise this year?

There are 80 potential rookies of the year this year. In reality only 59 rookies have stepped on an NBA court this year. And in actuality, the rookie of the year race is limited to very few players. I can't track them all, and write posts about them all season long. I am going to track their progress so that if one guy comes out of the blue to do well -- my spreadsheets will be able to notice them. STILL THOUGH, that's just insanity to write about and bore my audience with. So let's break it all down into the Top 15 rookies so far this year. This doesn't mean that these are the 15 guys in the running for the 2013-14 ROY award. No, it means that these are the Top 15 rookies who deserve some mention. This is more like an intermediate cut before the commercial break, before the real Miss America cut. (Or something, I don't know. I don't watch pageants, I just date girls who are in them.)

By the time of my research (Dec 17th, 2013 before the games started) each team in the NBA had played an average of 24.1667 games. Some teams, like the Utah Jazz, have played more (27); and some teams have played much less (22). Each game is, on average, 48 minutes per game. If you multiply the number of average games by the length you get a tidy 1,160 minutes. A rookie isn't going to play all of the minutes, but the best ones will play more (sorry, ROY awards don't wait for your 4 year development plan for young players to finally have them earn their minutes). The range I put up was that for a player to make the first cut they needed to have played in 35%-45% of all of their teams' games, average 35%-45% of the available minutes per game, and have played in 35%-45% of the total minutes available. This means you have to get in the game, play a lot in the game, and play a lot overall.

If you aren't doing those things you're not winning Rookie of the Year.

What that left me was a huge group of rookies who have played in 9.45-10.88 games this year, and average 16.8 - 21.6 mpg. I decided to make life easy for myself (for the first, and last, time of my life), and just kick off every player who hasn't played in at least 15 regular season games, and isn't averaging at least 15.0 mpg. And then I fudged the data a bit to allow entry for a dude averaging 14.88 mpg. This group is 15 players strong. These are your All-Rookie First, Second, and Third teams for the first (on average) 24.1667 games of the season.

Who are they? This is who.

NBA Draft
Rnd # Year Player Pos Age Team G Mins
1 1 2 2013 Victor Oladipo 2 3 21.62 ORL 25 785
2 1 8 2013 Kentavious Caldwell-Pope 2 3 20.82 DET 24 568
3 1 7 2013 Ben McLemore 2 3 20.84 SAC 22 552
4 1 11 2013 Michael Carter-Williams 1 2 22.18 PHI 15 551
5 3 61 2012 Hollis Thompson 3 22.70 PHI 24 499
6 2 38 2013 Nate Wolters 1 22.59 MIN 20 489
7 1 9 2013 Trey Burke 1 21.09 UTA 15 436
8 1 4 2013 Cody Zeller 5 4 21.20 CHA 24 430
9 1 24 2013 Tim Hardaway Jr. 2 21.75 NYK 23 395
10 3 61 2013 Vitor Faverani 5 25.62 BOS 26 387
11 1 12 2013 Steven Adams 5 4 20.39 OKC 23 371
12 1 15 2013 Giannis Antetokounmpo 3 1 19.03 MIL 19 346
13 1 13 2013 Kelly Olynyk 4 5 22.66 BOS 16 345
14 1 22 2013 Mason Plumlee 5 4 23.78 BKN 20 341
15 1 20 2013 Tony Snell 2 3 22.10 CHI 18 336

Okay, so that's 6 lotto picks, 1 guy from the second round, 2 undrafted players . . . aaaannnd obviously not all of these guys are rookie of the year material. it's easier to spot when you look at their per game stats so far.

NBA Draft Per Game Stats
Rnd # Year Player Pos Age Team G Mins MPG PPG RPG AST TO A:TO SPG BPG PFPG
1 1 11 2013 Michael Carter-Williams 1 2 22.18 PHI 15 551 36.73 17.67 5.80 7.33 3.67 2.00 3.13 0.73 2.67
2 1 2 2013 Victor Oladipo 2 3 21.62 ORL 25 785 31.40 13.76 4.48 3.48 3.52 0.99 1.72 0.76 2.84
3 1 9 2013 Trey Burke 1 21.09 UTA 15 436 29.07 12.40 3.33 4.93 1.33 3.70 0.67 0.07 1.80
4 1 7 2013 Ben McLemore 2 3 20.84 SAC 22 552 25.09 8.91 3.09 1.00 1.09 0.92 0.73 0.18 2.23
5 2 38 2013 Nate Wolters 1 22.59 MIN 20 489 24.45 7.15 2.70 4.10 1.25 3.28 0.70 0.35 1.20
6 1 8 2013 Kentavious Caldwell-Pope 2 3 20.82 DET 24 568 23.67 7.29 2.46 0.96 0.33 2.88 0.92 0.08 1.88
7 1 13 2013 Kelly Olynyk 4 5 22.66 BOS 16 345 21.56 7.38 5.25 1.50 2.19 0.69 0.44 0.31 3.44
8 3 61 2012 Hollis Thompson 3 22.70 PHI 24 499 20.79 6.08 3.58 0.50 1.63 0.31 0.17 0.88 1.54
9 1 20 2013 Tony Snell 2 3 22.10 CHI 18 336 18.67 5.33 1.50 1.11 0.83 1.33 0.33 0.22 0.72
10 1 15 2013 Giannis Antetokounmpo 3 1 19.03 MIL 19 346 18.21 6.00 3.89 1.00 0.95 1.06 0.53 0.68 1.74
11 1 4 2013 Cody Zeller 5 4 21.20 CHA 24 430 17.92 5.25 4.29 1.00 1.25 0.80 0.50 0.42 2.25
12 1 24 2013 Tim Hardaway Jr. 2 21.75 NYK 23 395 17.17 8.13 1.17 0.87 0.61 1.43 0.48 0.17 1.22
13 1 22 2013 Mason Plumlee 5 4 23.78 BKN 20 341 17.05 6.30 3.05 0.45 0.75 0.60 0.50 0.50 2.40
14 1 12 2013 Steven Adams 5 4 20.39 OKC 23 371 16.13 4.04 4.78 0.87 0.91 0.95 0.43 0.96 2.74
15 3 61 2013 Vitor Faverani 5 25.62 BOS 26 387 14.88 5.12 4.19 0.50 1.23 0.41 0.35 0.96 1.92

Maybe this draft class isn't so hot? Only five players are averaging more than half a game played, and only three are averaging double digits in scoring. (The historical look at the draft showed us that ROY is most dominated by guys who score a lot -- and the average is 20.0 ppg) Effectively this looks like a three horse race in just the simple numbers.

Thankfully there are more than just simple numbers to look at. But that is information for another post. And yes, we're kicking off some more players from the Island. It's not going to be 15 players in each post -- but as the season goes on, if players deserve to be mentioned, they will be.

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