In the early 2000s, a teenage prodigy named Lebron James captured the minds of sports fans around the globe as a teenage at St. Vincent St. Mary’s in Akron, Ohio. Nearly two decades later, Zion Williamson steps on the scene ready to carry the torch from “The King.” Zion’s highlights went viral while attending Spartanburg Day School in South Carolina, years before he will step foot on an NBA court. But are gravity-defying dunks and instant popularity among NBA fans enough to separate him from the pack in the pros?
The high-flying Williamson has captivated the world for years with his show reel dunks and insane blocks. There’s a reason memes on Twitter have made jokes about Zion needing to return to his home planet. His out of this world athleticism is nearly unparalleled in the NBA. A crazy thought when considering the caliber of athletes the Association employs. Williamson will be granted a starting role upon arrival in New Orleans, and the team will do everything in its power to feature their best player from Day 1. Joined on the roster by elite facilitators in Jrue Holiday and Lonzo Ball, Zion will be given every chance to thrive.
Williamson stands as the heavy favorite to win the 2020 NBA Rookie of the Year at -135. Second overall pick Ja Morant, of the Memphis Grizzlies comes in at +300. Canadian prodigy RJ Barrett, who Knicks fans hope is the savior, is next at + 550. Ja Morant is the future in Memphis after the team traded both Marc Gasol and Mike Conley in the past year. A fantastic passer, the Grizzlies will count on Morant to be at the epicentre of their offense on every possession. While leading the country in assists and transition points, the explosive point guard is a special, high level passer. He displays the traits to break down defenses and find the open man. Morant could challenge for the assist title and his every chance to win the NBA Rookie of the Year.
RJ Barrett has been thrust into the spotlight as the next savior of the floundering New York Knicks franchise. The Knicks were hoping to have a transformative off-season, as it had been widely reported they were set to sign Kevin Durant and possible other high-level free agents. Fans were disappointed to miss out on both Zion and KD, but they’ll more than settle for Barrett. The 6’7. 200 pound swing man is coming off the most prestigious freshman college in season in 25 years, averaging 22 points, seven rebounds, and four assists at Duke. His scoring and improvisational skills will serve him well in his quest to dethrone Zion for the Rookie of the Year trophy. On a Knicks team almost completely devoid of talent, there’s no reason Barrett can’t threaten the rookie scoring title. That should thrust him directly in line to challenge his college teammate for the top rookie honours. At +550 , RJ Barrett cannot be ignored.
When betting for the Rookie of the Year, one must look for players who have a clear path to playing time, and opportunity for high usage. Much like in fantasy basketball. Chicago Bulls point guard Coby White will have every chance to take over as the starter. The sharpshooter can catch fire at any moment, and had five games with 27 or more points at North Carolina. Coby has an eye for cutting up defenses with fantastic passing ability as he demonstrated in matchups with Duke this past year. He’ll only build on his accolades in Chicago, and at +1800 is the sleeper pick to win Rookie of the Year.
|Michael Porter Jr.||