There is only one thing that can keep a Rookie high in the rankings; that is Consistency, week after week. In this week players like Bucks’ rookie Malcolm Brogdon and Brooklyn’s Isaiah Whitehead have moved up in the ladder due to their strong, consistent play.
1. Joel Embiid, Philadelphia 76ers
Last week: No.1
Joel’s play is earning recognition from his fellow mates for his impressive play this season. Still on a minutes limit, however, no longer sitting out games for rest, Embiid just continues to deliver, topping all rookies in points (18.7), rebounds (7.4) and blocks (2.4). Embiid’s shooting remains stellar do far. He is shooting 46.8 percent, 40.3 percent, and 76.5 percent from the line.
2. Malcolm Brogdon, Milwaukee Bucks
Last week: No. 3
Playing well consistently for a playoff hope, Brogdon moves up a spot this week. His performances, like in Milwaukee’s 123-96 victory over the Wizards on Friday, where he didn’t miss a shot and scored career-high 17 points and had seven assists in 29 minutes was impressive. Brogdon stands second among all rookies in assists (3.2), third in steals (1.0) and fifth in scoring (7.9).
Last week: No. 2
After poor shooting performance in few games, Saric’s shot has come down. He shot 45.5 percent and 40 percent from downtown and scored 12 points while converting nine rebounds in Philadelphia’s 102-100 defeat to Sacramento on Monday. However, Saric stands second among all rookies in points (9.2) and rebounds (5.8).
Last week: No. 4
After struggling with his shots for over a week, his scoring has dropped off drastically. Murray scored just two points in each of Denver’s last two matches. Despite his struggles, Murray still ranks third among rookies in scoring, averaging 8.7 points.
Last week: 5
Siakam’s time have been cut down drastically in Toronto’s last two games as the Raptors have been increasing Patrick Patterson’s play. Among all rookies, Siakam is second in blocks and eighth in rebounds.
Last week: No. 7
Starting for the Nets due to Jeremy Lin’s injuries this season, Whitehead seems to be a promising player. In December, Whitehead is averaging a solid 8.6 points and 3.1 assists in 24 minutes. Isaiah is third among rookies in assists and 10th in points.
Last week: No. 6
Ingram’s defense and his ability to play different positions makes him a standout among other rookies. His shooting percentage (34.8 percent) may not be up for the job. Ingram played well in the Lakers’ Christmas day win against the Clippers, scoring 10 points and six rebounds in 27 minutes.
Last week: No. 8
Harrison’s shooting is still terrible (28.2 percent). However, he is an exceptional defender and playmaker. He leads all rookies in assists (3.7) and steals (1.1). Also, Harrison is second in minutes and sixth in blocks.
Last week: No. 9
If you don’t find Harrison the epitome of the strangeness of the second half of the Ladder, Hernangomez is. When he plays, he delivers. The part about playing is questionable. In the last 10 Knicks games, the No. 35 pick in 2015 has seven rebounds or more four times, at least nine points three times, and played three minutes or less five times. He went from 10 boards in 21 minutes and nine rebounds in 28 minutes right into getting just two minutes. However, he is third among rookies in rebounds, second in shooting, and tied for fourth in blocks.
Last week: No. 10
Chriss is eighth in scoring, ninth in the shooting, eighth in rebounding and tied for fourth in blocks. His playing time has increased from 14.9 minutes in November to 19.3 in December, with three games remaining, and the chance for a climb into the 20s in January.
Here is a video of rookies having fun: