Josh Giddey, aka the wizard of Aus, earned himself his first double-double of his career against the Lakers last night.
With the double-double, Giddey places himself as the second youngest player to have 10 points and 10 assists in a game. And the youngest? LeBron James. Pretty good company for the young point guard.
With that being said, it’s time to start the narrative: Josh Giddey for Rookie of the Year.
Giddey is growing into a nightly triple-double threat. He’s going to grab a decent amount of boards, given the usual size advantage against his matchup. Assists? Of course he’s going to pass the ball, usually in an eye-popping way, but the real question is whether or not the shot goes in.
The rookie is averaging 10.8 PPG, 6.2 RPG, and 5.6 APG. The numbers are impressive as is, but anyone who has watched all five games knows that Giddey is looking more and more comfortable every time he checks into the game.
One stat that should shock most draft analysts is Giddey’s three point percentage. The point guard is averaging 38.5% on three-pointers through his first five games. Pretty good for someone who can’t shoot, right? Obviously it isn’t a huge sample size, but it’s not like he got lucky on a couple threes either. Giddey has hit some impressive, in rhythm transition three-pointers.
This may have been a deep two, but I’m counting this as a three-pointer:
Another concern that scouts had was his creation. Giddey has pretty well debunked that as well. He not only gets to his spots, but he has been able to set up his teammates for success as well.
Giddey sets up Kenny Hustle for easy layup:
Also the play to help seal the game:
People doubted Giddey since the moment he was drafted. By people, I mean everyone on Twitter, including Thunder fans. It’s safe to say that Giddey has proved many people wrong.
For reference, here are how some other rookies have played to start off their season:
Evan Mobley: Through five games, the big man has averaged 13.8 PPG, 8.6 RPG, and 2.2 APG. While I haven’t watched much of the Cavs, I’ve been impressed so far. Not so much on the offensive end, but on defense he’s been great. Teams have trouble scoring in the lane when Mobley and Jarrett Allen share the court together. One of his best traits has been his ability to cover the floor, especially at his size.
Chris Duarte: Duarte has been nothing short of impressive. Averaging 18.6 PPG, 4.6 RPG, and 1.8 APG, Duarte is proving to have been a good pick for the Pacers at 13th overall. Being able to come into the league and pick your spots AND make tough shots is very impressive. Nick Nurse even mentioned ahead of their matchup that teams have to start involving him in their defensive schemes. That’s high praise from a good coach early on.
Scottie Barnes: The Thunder that could have been. Toronto must have really liked what they saw in Barnes, and that has been shown early this season. The fourth overall pick is averaging 17 PPG, 8.2 RPG, and 2.4 APG. Much like Giddey, Scottie’s passing has shown flashes of being a good passer, but it doesn’t show as much in the assist column. Something that has not shown as much as Giddey is his three-point shooting. Through five games, Barnes is 1-for-6 on three-pointers.
Cade Cunningham: The consensus number one overall pick has yet to make his NBA debut, but what we saw in Summer League is enough. The point is going to be very good. His leadership and control of pace are going to be huge for him coming into the league, but what stood out to me was his perimeter defense, especially in his matchup against Jalen Green. We can all expect Cunningham to be in the race for ROTY.