Blog Entry

Derrick Williams is Rookie of the Year favorite

Posted on: June 27, 2011 2:16 pm
Edited on: June 27, 2011 3:16 pm
Minnesota Timberwolves forward Derrick Williams is the odds-on favorite to win 2011-2012 Rookie of the Year. Posted by Ben Golliver.


Derrick Williams might have been the No. 2 selection in the 2011 NBA Draft, but he's sitting in the pole positon to win the 2012 NBA Rookie of the Year award.
has released its early odds for which member of the Draft Class of 2011 will take home the Rookie of the Year award. Williams, a dynamic combo forward out of Arizona, leapfrogged one-and-done Duke point guard Kyrie Irving, drafted by Cleveland Cavaliers, to claim the No. 1 spot. The No. 10 selection, BYU guard Jimmer Fredette, selected by the Sacramento Kings, also finished ahead of Irving.

Here's a look at the top 10. Strictly for entertainment purposes only.

Why does Irving slide? Two reasons. To win Rookie of the Year, you must be as NBA-ready as possible and have the opportunity to play boatloads of minutes so that you can accumulate stats.

In Irving's case, he missed a good chunk of his rookie season at Duke, raising questions about how ready he is to be an impact player in the NBA from Day One. Second, the Cavaliers have a muddled point guard position with Baron Davis, Ramon Sessions and Boobie Gibson hanging around. That will likely get sorted out before next season rolls around, but it will be difficult to trade Davis, who is sure to get some serious burn.

Williams, on the other hand, is arguably the best physical specimen in this year's class. The Timberwolves have nothing to lose and, while Michael Beasley is on the roster and has a similar game, Minnesota has every incentive to turn Williams loose. With Rubio in the fold, look for the Timberwolves to continue to play an up-tempo game, with Williams given the green light to shoot and attack as often as he likes. One possible area of concern: Williams and Rubio, by virtue of playing on the same team, could cancel each other out.

Fredette represents the dumb money on this list. With no limit on his shot attempts in college, he compiled absurd scoring numbers. While he enters Sacramento figuring to get plenty of minutes, Tyreke Evans will command a very large chunk of the team's possessions, as will emerging big man DeMarcus Cousins. If Fredette doesn't defer, he will be marginalized. Ownership might be infatuated with him, but winning over his teammates is far more important.

Kanter appears to be more NBA-ready than most, but he enters a very crowded frontcourt in Utah. Surely he will carve out a solid role. But will it be enough to put up real numbers?

One solid dark-horse candidate: Kemba Walker. While he might not start from Day One because of D.J. Augustin, Walker will find plenty of available minutes in Charlotte's torn-down backcourt. The Bobcats are entering Year One of a major rebuild and thus will have Walker's development as a top -- perhaps the top -- priority. He enters the NBA after three years in college, and he proved that he was a star on that level. 

Ultimately, I would expect this to boil down to a three-man race between Williams, Irving and Walker. Williams is a worthy early favorite.

Since: Dec 4, 2006
Posted on: June 28, 2011 5:43 pm

Derrick Williams is Rookie of the Year favorite

I agree, but thats where he played when Milicic played the 5, which was pretty often. Randolph is very solid at three as well, but we will see what happens. I'll take that two dollar bet, only because I could see him getting buried in the line-up, not traded. The Twolves don't move anyone...

Since: Dec 12, 2010
Posted on: June 28, 2011 2:09 pm

Derrick Williams is Rookie of the Year favorite

I think Williams will be the starting three for the Wolves next year. Wes Johnson can play some three, and so can Anthony Randolph. Beasley, out of position as a three, is inefficient and unreliable.  Two dollars sez he'll be gone before Halloween. 


Since: Dec 4, 2006
Posted on: June 28, 2011 1:48 pm

Derrick Williams is Rookie of the Year favorite

Love started one game at Center this last year, so Kevin Love is just a 4. Beasley runs the 3 spot. Obviously Beasley is the one who will be splitting time with Williams, but when Beasley was healthy he performed at a pretty good level for the Wolves. Williams can't take ROY, he will be put in the 3 spot to run the floor, so there goes a good rebound avg., not to mention Love gobbles them all up. And sure he'll have a couple blowup games, but I can't see him avg. over 15 ppg, I mean, did anyone watch him at Arizona, he dissappeared in the middle of the season. I will easily project him not gettin ROY and it going to someone getting more consistent minutes like Jimmer, Vesely, or even if Knight can get the starting role. Heck, I'll even throw Norris Cole in over Williams. IMO

Since: Dec 12, 2010
Posted on: June 28, 2011 12:27 pm

Derrick Williams is Rookie of the Year favorite

Love is a 4-5.

Since: Dec 4, 2006
Posted on: June 28, 2011 3:41 am

Derrick Williams is Rookie of the Year favorite

So what happens when the Twolves don't ship anyone else on their team? Beasley and Love are both starters at the 3-4.. where does Williams fit in? I would vote for a person getting consistent minutes, the Twolves coach last year benched Love several times for no good reason, who knows what he'll do with Williams...

Since: Nov 3, 2007
Posted on: June 28, 2011 1:08 am

Derrick Williams is Rookie of the Year favorite

I think Williams was the best player in the draft and should of gone #1. They should of taken Williams #1 and then taken Kemba/Knight #4. Then you would of had an explosive 3 with range and and a future PG. I honestly think they should of taken Williams and Kemba, but that's just me.

Since: Feb 8, 2009
Posted on: June 28, 2011 12:01 am

Derrick Williams is Rookie of the Year favorite

I don't think Irving is as good as Wall or Rose. I also think Derrick Williams is clearly better than Kyrle Irving not just for the rookie year. He should've been 1st pick imo. 

Since: May 6, 2009
Posted on: June 27, 2011 7:49 pm

Derrick Williams is Rookie of the Year favorite

I say good luck to the young guns. Every single one of them except for Irving has doubters. Prove the doubters wrong. Wouldn't it be awesome if some guy either not drafted or was drafted in the 2nd round would win the award. Everyone would be stunned. Doubt that would happen though unless if it is on a team that doesn't have sure fire starter.

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