Rookie Watch: Eyes Forward in Memphis
Rookie Watch: Eyes Forward in Memphis

Luka Doncic, Mavericks

The heavy Rookie of the Year favorite continues to gain steam and has officially taken over as the engine of the Mavericks' offense. Doncic is coming off of a rough shooting night Tuesday against the Clippers – 5-15 FG, 0-8 3PT – but he still managed 17 points, seven rebounds and six assists.

Perhaps the best way to frame Doncic's progression is that he's virtually eliminated the no-show games that plague most first-year players. He did have an eight-point outing over the weekend against Indiana, but Doncic still salvaged a reasonably productive fantasy game, adding six rebounds, five assists and three steals in only 24 minutes.

Over his last 20 games, Doncic is putting up 22.6 points, 6.8 rebounds, 6.3 assists and 1.3 steals, while getting to the line more than eight times per game. The percentages – 42.7% FG, 34.9% 3PT, 69.3% FT – haven't been ideal, but Doncic's counting stats have carried him to borderline-top-10 fantasy status over the last month. With no signs of slowing down anytime soon, Doncic is on pace to join Michael Jordan and Grant Hill as the only rookies to average at least 19 points, six rebounds, five assists and one steal per game.

Deandre Ayton, Suns

Barring an injury, Doncic is going to be the Rookie of the Year, but Ayton has been good enough to at least make it somewhat of a discussion. Ayton is currently battling an injury that's cost him the last two games,

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Nick Whalen
RotoWire's NBA Editor and award winning host of the RotoWire NBA Podcast. Many years ago, Stromile Swift gave Nick his unbelievably sweaty headband after a preseason game. Despite its failure to match his school colors, Nick went on to wear that headband for the entirety of his sixth grade basketball season. Catch Nick on Twitter @wha1en.
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