The 2021-2022 rookie class is extremely deep. Not only are there so many potential candidates, but there could be potential superstars in the making. Even some second rounders (i.e. Sharife Cooper) have promising outlooks. With that in mind, TGH gives you a list of potential All-Rookie first and second team candidates, along with some bonus picks for Defensive Player of the Year.
All-Rookie Second Team
Davion Mitchell, Alperen Sengun, Franz Wagner, Trey Murphy, Scottie Barnes
All of these rookies are going to be given great opportunities to produce. Mitchell is clearly the best defender in this class. Due to his menacing defensive motor, he will be given a good role despite being behind Tyrese Haliburton and DeAaron Fox.
Sengun looks like a very fun player and he will be given a fun opportunity to produce on a rebuilding Rockets squad. Wagner has the opportunity to start at small forward for the Magic so his outlook will look promising. Barnes has all the tools to be a 2-way superstar in this league but it will take some time as he’s coming off the bench behind Pascal Siakam and Chris Boucher. Finally, Murphy is in contention for a starting spot in New Orleans. If he wins it, he will be used as an electric scorer who can play off the ball.
All-Rookie First Team
Cade Cunningham, Jalen Green, Jalen Suggs, Evan Mobley, Josh Giddey
The first four are essentially a lock, but it was tough to hone in on a fifth selection. Cunningham is going to be a generational-type talent who’s going to have a feature role on offense. Green is going to be used in the same way; a featured role who will be on ball a majority of the time. Suggs is also going to be a generational-type talent and his defensive presence will only help him secure a All-Rookie spot.
Mobley and Giddey are both going to be important players for their respective teams this year. Mobley will be another featured option on offense and his shot-blocking will also be on display this year. Giddey will be the starting Point Guard for OKC this year and will be given ample opportunities. His offensive game and playmaking are above-average due to playing professionally overseas.
Potential Defensive Player of the Year Candidates
Draymond Green, Davion Mitchell, Bam Adebayo
All three players listed above will be top defenders this year. Davion Mitchell’s defense can’t be overlooked, but his staying power in the NBA is yet undetermined. His defense can single-handily increase the teams defense as a whole if he’s given meaningful minutes.
Green is an obvious candidate for this award as his defense is consistently excellent. His defense is easily top five in the league every year and this year, Golden State could be back in the playoffs and it will be partly due to his game-changing defense. Adebayo is a game-changing center who does it all. Miami is lucky to have him as he is an excellent perimeter defender for a center and can defend the post with ease. Expect all three to have excellent shots at DPOY.
Featured image courtesy of David Santiago/Miami Herald
“From Our Haus to Yours“