2020-2021 NBA Rookie of the Year Rankings

With less than two weeks left in the 2021 NBA season, it’s time to debate Rookie of the Year honors. Here are my rankings updated as frequently as I can. The games will go on, players will play, some will compete to the very end. Let’s get to the 2020-2021 NBA Rookie of the Year Rankings!

2021 NBA Rookie of the Year Rankings

2020-2021 season (as of 5/6/21)

  • 18.9 PPG
  • 4.7 RPG
  • 2.8 APG
  • 41 % FG
  • 31.8 MPG

Anthony Edwards has proven that he’s an NBA player. Remember when he said that he’s not fully into playing basketball yet pre-draft? Little did we know that Mr. Edwards would be gold during media sessions. He’s even made funny comments about Alex Rodriguez’s love life. Let’s discuss some basketball, however. Edwards has emerged as the clear favorite this week with his 42-point outburst against the Grizzlies on May 5th, 2021. After all, in a pandemic year and the lowest of expectation from the 2020 NBA Draft we’re in luck for some “overachieving” surprises.

Anthony has now scored 42 points twice this season (third youngest to do so when he first did it). He is the number one pick in the 2020 NBA Draft. He rightfully has earned his way into the conversation for Rookie of the Year. Does LaMelo Ball’s missed time hurt his Rookie of the Year chances? Edwards is a man of steel. No missed games for the Timberwolves. I am a fan of availability but honestly, Ball gets a break here and he’s back in action anyways. For now, he ranks number one given the fact of his recent play and proving he will not have an issue scoring the ball in the NBA.

2020-2021 season (as of 5/6/21)

  • 15.9 PPG
  • 5.9 RPG
  • 6.1 APG
  • 45 % FG
  • 28.7 MPG

Ignore my 2021 NBA Awards predictions because if LaMelo is the runner-up this year, I was wrong about the Rookie of the Year anyway. Shame on me thinking Golden State would be a perfect learning spot for James Wiseman to showcase his talents. I apologize to Melo and also isn’t it great to see his older brother Lonzo Ball look a lot better in the second half of the season? The youngest Ball has been the BEST Rookie all season until well, Edwards decided that playtime was over. He missed 19 games and has come back to play three games since then. Those games aren’t appearing to be any different at this rate. The smaller sample size might make the averages seem a bit lower but we can assume the wrist injury isn’t slowing him down upon return.

This Rookie of the Year race is getting spicy now that Anthony Edwards has entered the chat. We can try to look at scheduling for the Timberwolves and Hornets. We can try to anticipate match-ups that may hinder any potential big games from these two Rookies. However, odds are in the last two weeks of an NBA season it is too difficult to determine. For this week since Ball is returning from injury, he’s back at number two barely.

2020-2021 season (as of 5/6/21)

  • 11.2 PPG
  • 5.4 RPG
  • 2.3 APG
  • 51 % FG
  • 29.4 MPG

I’m assuming nobody has watched a lot of Rockets games (honestly Rockets fans have you stuck to enjoying the young core this entire season post-James Harden?). I will not question that as a Magic fan but let’s talk about a guy who has moved up in the top 3 this week. Unfortunately, we lost James Wiseman with a season-ending knee injury and the Sacramento Kings announced that Tyrese Haliburton is done for the rest of the season.

The window opens up for plenty of young Rookies to make some noise but let’s be real. Nobody is coming close to LaMelo and Anthony. However, a nice bronze medal for Tate is the hardest working Rookie lately. His last 10 games averaged 10.5 points per game, 5.1 rebounds per game, and 3.6 assists per game while shooting 49-percent from the field.

2021 NBA Rookie of the Year Rankings Honorable Mentions

Cole Anthony – Orlando Magic
I have to dig this deep to have a reasonable homer pick and here it is. Anthony has a game-winning shot under his belt yet again. He does it for the second time this season AND gives us an interview similar to the current Rookie of the Year frontrunner. Now I know you’re like come on man, are we really giving Cole Anthony ROOKIE OF THE YEAR mention? Well quite frankly, at this point we could interchange any Rookie stepping up weekly in the third spot down. In the game against Memphis (the one that he hit the game-winner) he had 26 points (4-of-6 3PT field goal),, 8 rebounds, 6 assists.

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