2. Trae Young
It’s a good time to mention that these rankings are about how well a rookie’s played to date. This is not a statement about who is going to become the best player down the road.
No player has exceeded early expectations more than Young. The Hawks have handed him the keys to their offense and he’s been shockingly effective. He’s averaging a cool 23.3 points and 8.3 assists per game to date. He also happens to be doing it efficiently with an effective field goal percentage of 55.5.
If he keeps this sort of offensive production up people aren’t going to worry so much about his defensive deficiencies. Unfortunately for the Hawks, those are still very apparent. There’s no one for Young to guard on the floor. He’s going to be hunted relentlessly on that end of the floor for his entire career unless he makes massive strides.
Young wasn’t drafted to be a shutdown defender though. The Hawks took him to put points on the board early and often. Everything about the offensive side of his game is very encouraging.