Each week, FanSided will be ranking the NBA rookies based on the performance so far this season.
For the sixth straight week, Philadelphia 76ers’ point guard Michael Carter-Williams tops the list with Orlando Magic guard Victor Oladipo solidly in second.
This week was highlighted by a battle between the top two on the list. In a 126-125 double overtime victory over the Magic, Carter-Williams recorded his first triple double. He finished with 27 points, 12 rebound and 10 assists. Not to be outdone, Oladipo also had a triple double with 26 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists. The two guards continue to blow away all of their rookie competition.
1. Michael Carter-Williams, PG, Philadelphia 76ers
Carter-Williams unfortunately has not played since the victory over the Magic because of an infection in his right knee. In fact, he was kept over night at the UPenn Hospital because of the infection. The 76ers say there is no timetable for his return. On the season, the former Syracuse Orange point guard is putting 17.7 points, 7.3 assist, 5.8 rebounds and 3.1 steals per game.
2. Victor Oladipo, G, Orlando Magic
With Carter-Williams’ injury and the recent insertion of Oladipo into the starting lineup by Magic head coach Jacque Vaughn, it may be time for the former Indiana Hoosier to take a shot at earning the top spot. He’s not there yet. However, Oladipo did have another good week, highlighted by the triple double and his ridiculous block of Carmelo Anthony’s dunk attempt in a 121-83 blowout loss to the New York Knicks Friday. Oladipo scored 13, 26 and 17 points this week and is showing clear improvement. He’s putting up 14.1 points, 4.6 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 1.7 steals per game.
3. Trey Burke, PG, Utah Jazz
It’s been nice to see Burke get into a groove with the Jazz. Burke has now played in 10 games and continues to look better and better. Burke, who took home almost every award while leading the Michigan Wolverines to the national championship game last season, scored 21, 13, seven and 19 this week. Obviously, consistency will be a key in Burke’s develop, but he looks like he is going to be an excellent point guard in the league. The ninth overall pick of the draft is averaging 12.7 points, 4.1 assists and 3.6 rebounds in 28.0 minutes per game.
4. Ben McLemore, SG, Sacramento Kings
McLemore continues to show improvement and has taken a strong hold on the third spot behind Carter-Williams and Oladipo. Since a poor four-point outing in a 115-113 loss to the Golden State Warriors Sunday, McLemore had 14 points in a 97-95 loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder Tuesday, 20 points in a 106-100 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers Friday and 15 points (and nine rebounds) in a 112-102 win over the Utah Jazz Saturday night. The former Kansas Jayhawk is now averaging 10.1 points and 3.3 rebounds per game.
5. Steven Adams, C, Oklahoma City Thunder
Although Adams continues to be a a presence on the interior in terms of rebounding and shot-blocking, the rest of his game is so limited that he can’t earn enough minutes to make a true impact. Of course, Adams is just 20 years old and is playing on a contending team who can’t afford to simply let him play heavy minutes and develop like the rest of the teams who have players on this list. Adams is averaging 4.1 points, 4.9 rebounds and 0.9 blocks in just 16.2 minutes per game.
In: Trey Burke
Out: Kelly Olynyk