When the NBA season started two rookie forwards were making a name of themselves. Evan Mobley of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Scottie Barnes of the Toronto Raptors.

At that point it seemed the two were going to challenge each other for the Rookie of the Year honors. That held true mostly though Detroit Pistons guard Cade Cunningham and Houston Rockets guard Jalen Green coming on strong towards the end of the season.


Cunningham finished the season averaging 17.4 points, 5.6 assists, 5.5 rebounds, 1.2 steals and he shot 41.6 percent from the field, 31.4 from three, and 84.5 percent from the free throw line. He did miss 18 games.

Green averaged 17.3 points, 3.4 rebounds, 2.6 assists and shot 42.6 percent from the field, 34.3 percent from three and 79.7 percent from the free throw line. In the final nine games of the season he averaged 28.1 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 2.4 assists.

He finished the season with a 41 point performance. Green did miss 15 games.

For Mobley his defense anchored the Cavaliers team that won 44 games. A number that many fans did not believe the franchise were capable of.

Mobley averaged 15 points, 8.3 rebounds, 2.5 assists, 1.7 blocks, and he shot 50.8 percent from the field and 66.2 percent from the free throw line. He did miss 13 games total with five of those games coming in the last seven games of the season.

A career-high of 30 points came against the Los Angeles Clippers on March 14, on March 6 he grabbed a career-high 17 rebounds against the Toronto Raptors, on January 12 he registered a career-high of seven assist against the Utah Jazz, on March 8 versus the Indiana Pacers he set a career-high with five steals, and on December 8 set a career-high with five blocks against the Chicago Bulls.

Arguably the best game of the season for Mobley was the March 8 game against the Pacers. He recorded 22 points, 12 rebounds, three assists, and five steals. The Cavaliers rookie also registered 21 double-doubles and when he was in the lineup Cleveland went 40-29.

Really hard not to justify Mobley as Rookie of the Year.

What may have put Barnes over the edge from the rest of the field is that he did not reach double digits in missed games played and of the eight games missed those were scattered throughout the season.

Barnes finished the year averaging 15.3 points, 7.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 1.1 steals, and shot 49.2 percent from the field, 30.6 percent from three, and 73.5 percent from the free throw line.

A career-high of 31 points came and 17 rebounds came against the Los Angeles Lakers on March 18, On March 12 he recorded a career-high 10 assists against the Denver Nuggets, he registered a career-high five steals three times with two of those games coming against the Brooklyn Nets on November 7 and February 28, and the other on March 11 against the Phoenix Suns, and he recorded a career-high five blocks against the Sacramento Kings on December 13.

For Barnes arguably his best game was the February 28 game in which he recorded 28 points, 16 rebounds, four assists, five steals, and a block. Overall he recorded 13 double-doubles and when in the lineup for the Toronto Raptors the team went 43-31.

Quite possibly Mobley and Barnes needed to get named co-Rookie of the Year. Cause obviously both were deserving of the award.

 

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