Luka Doncic wins Rookie of the Year: Trae Young finishes 2nd
Doncic was the Mavericks' best player from the moment he arrived in Dallas, and it did not take him long to adjust to life in the NBA. He averaged 21.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, 6.0 assists, and 1.1 steals in 32.2 minutes per game as a rookie. Doncic shared his first season with Dirk Nowitzki, and it was clear that the Tall Baller from the G would be passing the torch to Luka at the end of his final season.
The Mavs had so much faith in Luka after just a few months that they traded for Kristaps Porzingis during his rookie season. Dallas missed the playoffs, but they wanted to put a second star around the teenager.
Doncic received 98 of the 100 first-place votes to win Rookie of the Year in 2019. Trae Young got the other two and finished second in the voting. The Hawks' point guard averaged 19.1 points, 8.1 assists, and 3.7 rebounds in 30.9 minutes as a rookie. Both started on opening night, and they were the only unanimous first-team All-Rookie selections that year.
The Mavericks and Hawks split their two meetings during their rookie season with both teams winning at home. Doncic struggled with his efficiency in both matchups. Luka and Trae faced off in the Rising Stars game in 2019 with Young producing a 25-point double-double and helping Team USA defeat Team World. Dallas and Atlanta both missed the playoffs that year, but the Hawks had two lottery selections in 2019 because of the trade.