MKG seems a consensus top three candidate for ROY. Doesn't mean much now, but its good to have any awareness of our players on a national level, and I think he ups our respectability a notch or two. I noticed there's no T-Rob mention anywhere.
Anyway, here's the Insider blurb about MKG:
Also:ESPN.com's Summer Forecast poll of experts recently suggested NBA Rookie of the Year voting will come down to the following three players: the New Orleans Hornets' Anthony Davis, the Portland Trail Blazers' Damian Lillard and the Charlotte Bobcats' Michael Kidd-Gilchrist.
As individuals, each of these guys had college seasons ranging from good to fantastic last season. They all have significant upside, but will be expected to contribute pretty quickly so none of them should be considered a "project" at all like the Detroit Pistons' Andre Drummond is.
All three guys can play and will put up numbers, as they proved that to some degree during the NBA summer leagues. So how accurate will the Summer Forecast be?
When deliberating on how to vote for an MVP, Rookie of the Year, etc., the play of the individual must be considered in context with the success of his team. If this trio of players all post similar PER scores and overall game productivity, their teams' success will carry more weight, which gives a guy like Lillard an advantage. However, if a player produces far more than any other rookie, then he'll win even if he shines for a horrible team, which is what could happen to Kidd-Gilchrist. Davis is indeed the favorite, but he isn't a lock.
Here's a look at why the NBA Rookie of the Year Award will or will not go to Davis, Kidd-Gilchrist or Lillard and what might have been missing from their games to prevent them from taking home the hardware at the end of the 2012-13 season.
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, F
Why he could win: Forget how bad the Bobcats might be again this season (it was not a fluke that they lost so often in 2011-12), and focus on just how good Kidd-Gilchrist is at playing his heart out. It's all he has ever done, and as we recently saw with Kenneth Faried last season, that carries much of the day in the NBA. Combine that with how interested teams are in defensive intensity on all parts of the floor as well as an increased focus on the transition game, and we see ample opportunities for Kidd-Gilchrist to flirt with 20 points and 10 rebounds in certain games and perhaps some triple-doubles, too.
Kidd-Gilchrist is comfortable filling the lane, but he's also keen on making the extra pass to get his team a simple bucket. Teams are also looking to go small at power forward more often, so Kidd-Gilchrist should see significant minutes matched up against bigger but slower opponents. But he possesses the power and strength to play with them, despite his youth. He's not going to average Tyreke Evans' rookie line of 20 points, five rebounds and five assists per game, but 14 points, seven rebounds and four assists a game is certainly within reach. And that would be a powerful statement to voters.
Why he doesn't win: Gilchrist is many things, but nothing in Las Vegas suggested he's a good shooter. If he's not effective on the glass or in transition, he might struggle to score on many nights. Unlike Lillard, he's used to playing with a target on his chest against top players, so I don't see that as an issue.
But losing is contagious, and losing as often as Charlotte might this season can certainly be dispiriting. It's even possible that management/coaching does not challenge him to bring his amazing energy every night once the end of the season is near, as the race for the next lottery pick will be on. Kidd-Gilchrist without his special drive and tenacity in gear is simply not a special player, and he certainly would not be worthy of a ROY selection.
Forecast: 2012-13 Rookie of the Year
RANK PLAYER VOTES
New Orleans Hornets
PF | No. 1 pick
14.2 ppg, 10.4 rpg, 4.7 bpg
71A-Train (Shade3c) @Emerald_Custard2
@NBAonESPN Anthony Davis because he reminds me of Bill Russell - better on defense than offense and can be a defensive anchor. #NBApicks
Portland Trail Blazers
PG | No. 6 pick
24.5 ppg, 4.0 apg
10Chris Freed @Big_Saages3
I think Damian Lillard gets rookie of the year - Starting minutes, 2 man game with LMA, and it's a guards league #NBApicks
SF | No. 2 pick
11.9 ppg, 7.4 rpg
8Dan Waxenberg @d_WAX
@NBAonESPN MKG is in the best situation to win ROY because he is already (by far) the best player on his team, the Bobcats. #NBApicks