This is the second prediction I have written here and the first one turned out not too badly. So here I go again.
I got the winner wrong last year as Derrick Rose got the minutes he needed due to injuries and trades. Didn't think to predict that. Also his personality and maturity are excellent and I am really looking forward to his next season.
OK that aside, I'm sticking with the formula.
The winner tends to gets lots of minutes and touches because normally his team sucks. Or rarely just be THAT good.
The contenders this year are slightly different in that, the draft class outside of Blake Griffin, wasn't really rated highly.
Makes this task harder for me, but following the fortunes of the rookies all the more interesting.
OK the obvious player is Blake Griffin and I am sorely tempted to give in and crown him but something just doesn't feel right.
Firstly the Clippers have play off expectations. Not just hopes but real expectations. That makes me think he will be given a role and not the freedom to learn that his peers will receive.
A starting five of Baron Davies, Eric Gordon, Al Thornton, Blake Griffin and either Kaman or Camby doesn't look that bad. They even have some depth on the bench.
However it's still the Clippers. So I don't think with their luck he can win the award but I'm hoping that by writing this, I jinx him to proving me wrong. I will be pulling for the guy.
(However if he gets caught on camera brawling with Kobe at a club and gets a 25 game ban it won't surprise me. Kobe would get his own reality show showing celebs how to throw a left hook with nba commercials thrown in. I'm not hating Kobe but clips luck dictates this is how it would happen)
Other than that, realistically its wide open.
I couldn't find a winner of this award not taken in the first round since the current draft format was adopted. This could be the year that changes.
I mean if Tim Duncan goes down DeJuan Blair gets minutes he could do enough to win. It is a long shot, I know, but would it really be shocking?. Not to me, not with his pre season performances.
Other than perhaps Johnny Flynn, Blake Griffin and my prediction, the winner could very easily come out of the pack and snatch the award.
James Harden, Brandon Jennings, DeMar DeRozen, Stephen Curry and Taj Gibson are all in with a good chance of getting the playing time, and being good enough, to earn rookie honours.
I also believe that Guys like Omri Casspi, Terrence Williams, Sam young and Chase Budinger will all contribute if the time opens up to them. Those are longer shots but the point is it wouldn't surprise me at all.
Johnny Flynn will also get his minutes however I think more will be asked of him than any other rookie as his team is so bad and injured. He will get numbers but I see a wall looming in his season. Mr Sessions, your up.
I am encouraged though by the play of most of the rookies in the pre season. For a draft full of question marks and doubts it's gratifying as a fan to see these guys prove the experts in the media wrong and front offices look stupid.
So all things considered I see a three horse race with Griffin, Flynn and ta da da da.
My prediction for the rookie of the year 2010.
He has looked like the best player in the draft at times this pre season, he will get to play through the highs and many lows of his upcoming season and there's no expectation to win. All perfect conditions for the modern rookie of the year.
Not only that, I'm looking forward to him and Kevin Martin lighting teams up. They could go for 30 points each on the same night. Oh and can you imagine the shoot out when they play the Warriors. That will be fun to watch if you can bear not too look at turnover stats. (which I do, sigh)
I am prepared to go on record saying Hasheem Thabeet wont win it, and can anyone tell me what happened to Jordan Hill? Surely the Darko signing didn't scare the crap out of him and his will to fight for minutes.
OK I hope you enjoyed the trip through my head and I hope your looking forward to this year as much as me.
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