There are many potential candidates for this seasons’ Rookie of the Year award but many believe that it’s a two-horse race between Dallas Mavericks guard Luka Doncic and Atlanta Hawks guard Trae Young.
Philadelphia 76ers big man and the winner of last year’s ROTY award, Ben Simmons, was asked last this weekend ahead of the 76ers matchup with the Mavericks, about who he believes should win the award and he responded with “Luka”.
“He’s playing better. Like, his team’s winning more games,” Simmons told reporters. “Trae Young is killing it. Same as Donovan (Mitchell last year). But it’s just overall I think Luka’s got his team playing a little better.”
— Landon Buford (@LandonBuford) April 1, 2019
Doncic is still currently the favorite for the award with Trae Young a close second behind him. The 19-year-old Slovenian is averaging 21.1 points per game, 7.6 rebounds and 5.1 assists in the 2018-19 season along with leading all first-year players in minutes and points scored.
When comparing Doncic to Young, it’s clear that the Mavs international star has been much more consistent throughout the year whereas Young took his time to develop into a strong and important player for Atlanta. Since the All-Star break, Young is averaging 25.1 points and 9.3 assists which is very impressive for someone at his age.
The two have had such an interesting relationship considering they were both apart of a deal on Draft night that had them exchange teams. Although there was a bit of concern for Trae Young at first, both players have developed into key players for their franchises.
Ben Simmons won Rookie of the Year last season after he missed the entire 2017 season because of a serious foot injury. Although the Hawks and Mavericks will not feature in this season’s playoffs, we can sure to expect these three young stars facing off against each other in the postseason over the next few years.