What do Al Horford, Al Thornton, Jamario Moon and Luis Scola have in common? Besides a large majority of the sporting world not being able to identify what sport they play (let alone what NBA team they are a member of), these four guys are among the leaders for the NBA Rookie of the Year Award according to the most recent Rookie Rankings at NBA.com. Kevin Durant rounds out the top five, by the way.
OK, so…wait…huh?! Now, admittedly I do not puport to be one of the NBA experts on this here Web, and Erie’s Scribe doesn’t even pretend to pay attention to the League other than his precious Bron-Bron…but I do watch my decent share of NBA action. And while I am not an avid fan (by super-psycho sports blogger standards), I’d like to think I know what’s going on. Apparently, I don’t have a freakin’ clue, because this article floored me.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a big Al Horford fan. Loved him as a Gator, have watched him as a Hawk. Kid plays hard every night…hits the boards…pretty athletic…decent game inside the paint…I get it. A lot of potential to have a nice NBA career and be a multi-season double-double guy. But the NBA Rookie of the Year?
It’s not that we’ve got anything against a B+ NBA player taking home the honor in his first year in the League, but perusing the list of past honorees most of “the anointed” over the last 20 years have been studs (at least for some period of time). Excluding Miller and Okeafor, it’s predominantly a laundry list of All-Stars: Paul, James, Stoudemire, Duncan, Iverson, O’Neal, etc.
So, what does this year’s seemingly sub-standard crop of candidates really mean? Does this all change if Kevin Durant wins the award? Is he a surefire superstar? Was the 2007 draft class that bad? Has the early departure of players watered-down the talent coming in and their real ability to contribute (previous winners in recent years says “no”). Would this be a completely irrelevant piece of Greg Oden hadn’t torn up his knee (most definitely…the full-year Durant/Oden comparisons hype would have been borderline unbearable)?
What’s the bottomline my hardwood hounds? Learn us. Because the reality of Horford and Scola poised among “the contenders” for NBA Rookie of the Year just doesn’t sit right.
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About the Author: Cecilio's Scribe is the founder of The Legend of Cecilio Guante and a generally pessimistic fan of the Mets, Jets, Knicks and Rangers. A fine NYC-based gentlemen who hones his marketing skills as his primary trade by day. Husband, chef, father of a newborn and after-hours blogger by night. Proud alum of the mighty Big Red of Cornell. University. Hot sauce devotee. Staunch protester of the continued wussifcation of American sports. Sometimes I rhyme slow, sometimes I rhyme quick.