Ranking the NBA Rookies After the First Month
By Kohl Rast
8. Josh Jackson
Josh Jackson was one of the most sought after players leading up to the draft and, had there not been a dire need for point guards from the top drafting teams, would have likely been in the conversation for the top pick. He has not yet shown exactly what he is capable of on the offensive end, averaging just under 10 points per game, but his defense has been stellar.
Josh Jackson played only one year with the Kansas Jayhawks before being drafted fourth overall by the Phoenix Suns. During his time there, Jackson made a believer out of most, winning the Big 12 Freshman of the Year award, along with a selection to the first team All Big-12, and third team All-American. His skills were unquestionable right from the start.
Josh Jackson started the season off strong and was a little higher on the list, but he began to tail off in the last 3-4 games and has been little help on the glass which both pushed him a little lower to the 8th spot. Jackson is in a great position to move up on the list, but it will require more consistent play from him, primarily on the offensive end.
Jackson stats: 9.9 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 1.4 spg
7. John Collins
Collins has been a nice little addition for the Atlanta Hawks this year who were hoping for a player to look forward to. He has played well above expectations on both ends of the floor and is looking like a game-ready lottery pick that are often so hard to find.
John Collins played his two years of college ball at Wake Forest where he went from a bench player averaging only 15 minutes a game, to averaging nearly 20 points and 10 rebounds per game in his sophomore season. He was selected 19th overall and was expected to be a part of the rotation right from the start.
Collins is in a great spot to do a lot of damage. Atlanta was viewed as a team that would end the season near the top of the lottery after this year as their squad is full of question marks. Now, after the first 8 games, we see that those question marks are still there but the Hawks managed to find a gem in Collins. He is quick, he is athletic, he is a playmaker, and he has a lot of room to grow and Atlanta ought to be excited to find out what this youngster will become.