Wembanyama unanimous NBA rookie of the year

Victor Wembanyama had a year like no rookie in NBA history. Others scored more points, others grabbed more rebounds, others had more blocks, others made more steals. But never had there been a player who, in year one of his career, posted all these averages at least 21.4 points, 10.6 rebounds, 3.9 assists, 3.6 blocks and 1.2 steals per game.

The long-expected result became reality on Monday, when the Spurs’ star was announced as the unanimous winner of the NBA’s Rookie of the Year award. The Frenchman is the third San Antonio player to win the award, joining David Robinson in 1990 and Tim Duncan in 1998 – both of whom, like Wembanyama, were No 1 overall picks and instantly anointed as centers who would lead the Spurs to greatness. Both went on to become members of the Hall of Fame.

“My goals were always to help my team as best as I could and get better as the year went on,” Wembanyama said from San Antonio on TNT after the award was announced on the network’s NBA playoff pregame show. “I knew in order to do this I had to be individually good on the court and dominant. So, it was a huge thing for me and a big thing to get. It’s always been really important and I’m glad it’s finally official.”

Wembanyama is the sixth player since the award debuted in the 1952-53 season to get every first-place vote. He joins Houston’s Ralph Sampson (1984), Robinson (1990), the Los Angeles Clippers’ Blake Griffin (2011), Portland’s Damian Lillard (2013) and Minnesota’s Karl-Anthony Towns (2016).

Oklahoma City’s Chet Holmgren and Charlotte’s Brandon Miller were the other finalists for the award. Wembanyama got all 99 first-place votes from a panel of reporters and broadcasters who cover the league. Holmgren got 98 of 99 second-place votes, and Miller got the other second-place vote to finish third.

Miami’s Jaime Jaquez Jr was fourth, followed by Golden State’s Brandin Podziemski and Dallas’s Dereck Lively II. No other rookie got a second- or third-place vote.

There had been other near-unanimous selections in recent years: Orlando’s Paolo Banchero got 98 of 100 first-place votes last year, Memphis’ Ja Morant got 99 of 100 in 2020, Dallas’s Luka Doncic got 98 of 100 in 2019, and Philadelphia’s Ben Simmons got 90 of 101 in 2018. But voters left no doubt  – Wemby was the one. And he’s already working toward getting better. – Gurdian.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *