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Top 7 NBA Rookies That Beat the League in a Year

Ardy is a freelance residential basketball athlete. Watches every GSW match and passionate to know more about NBA.

Wilt Chamberlain

Wilt Chamberlain

National Basketball Association (NBA) has been leading the most views of a basketball league for a very long time. Many factors causing that, such as the year founded, the interest of the sport in USA, superb play, and the engagement covered by medias.

Because of that, many talented players want to be in the league and retire in the league too. Stephen Curry the greatest three point shooter of all time, Lebron James the drive king, Michael Jordan the allrounded, and Kobe the Black Mamba all dreaming to be in the league as long as possible.

Eventhough it requires a lot of hardwork, the chance is still greatly there as long as a player works hard for it and uses his energy to experiment in his early years. Early years are so important since it is still tolerable to make mistakes at the moment, but there are some few names that have blasted the leauge since their rookie year. Who are they? Let's check them out!

Oscar Robertson

Oscar Robertson

Oscar Robertson

He was the one who brought Milwaukee Bucks to the champion title on 1971. It's an important moment for Bucks since Bucks have only won the title twice (the other one was on 2021). He is a point guard with an allrounded skill that's reflected by the most triple double ever until 2022. At his rookie times, he scored 30.5 points, 9.7 assists, and 10.1 total rebounds per game.

Here is his rookie records:

Robertson's rookie records

SeasonAgeTeamMinutes Played per GameField Goal %3 Points FG %Free Throw %Total ReboundsAssists per GamePoints per Game

1984-85

21

CIN

38.3

.515

.173

.845

6.5

5.9

28.2

Wilt Chamberlain

Wilt Chamberlain

Wilt Chamberlain

"The greatest rebounder," "The greatest scorer," "The most fire rookie," and so many more title he got. It's not a surprise since he had shown it since his first year when he scored 37.1 points, 2.3 assists, and 26.9 total rebounds per game.

Here is his rookie records:

Wilt's rookie records

SeasonAgeTeamMinutes Played per GameField Goal %3 Points FG %Free Throw %Total ReboundsAssists per GamePoints per Game

Regular

23

PHW

46.4

.461

-

.582

27.0

2.3

37.6

Playoffs

23

PHW

46.1

.496

-

.445

25.8

2.1

33.2

1959-60

23

PHW

46.4

.465

-

.567

26.9

2.3

37.1

Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan

No need further explanation for this legend. Not only in his mid and latest basketball career, his rookie year was also dope with 28.3 points, 6.2 assists, and 6.4 total rebounds per game.

Here is his rookie records:

Jordan's rookie records

SeasonAgeTeamMinutes Played per GameField Goal %3 Points FG %Free Throw %Total ReboundsAssits per GamePoints per Game

Regular

21

CHI

38.3

.515

.173

.845

6.5

5.9

28.2

Playoffs

21

CHI

42.8

.436

.125

.828

5.8

8.5

29.3

1984-85

21

CHI

38.8

.506

.168

.843

6.4

6.2

28.3

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Kareem is one of the most influencing Lakers center that had made the team won 5 times champion titles and 10 times division titles with the longest winning streak of 13 in the playoffs. He is a great rebounder, passer, scorer, and inventor with "Skyhook" which was his response for the prohibition of dunking at that time. Abdul-Jabbar's individual records are also dope with 19x NBA All Stars Game, 6x NBA Most Valuable Player, 2x NBA Finals MVP, and 5x NBA All Devensive First Team.

On his earliest, he scored 28.8 points, 4.1 assists, and 14.5 total rebounds per game.

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Here is his rookie records:

Kareem's rookie records

SeasonAgeTeamMinutes Played per GameField Goal %3 Points FG %Free Throw %Total ReboundsAssists per GamePoints per Game

Regular

22

MIL

43.1

.518

-

.653

14.5

4.1

28.8

Playoffs

22

MIL

43.5

.567

-

.733

16.8

4.1

35.2

1969-70

22

MIL

43.1

.523

-

.662

14.8

4.1

29.5

Elgin Baylor

Elgin Baylor

Elgin Baylor

He is the one famous for his hangings and jump shots. He was so loyal to LA Lakers (then was Minneapolis Lakers) that he didn't move anywhere and played as a small forward. He was 11x NBA All Star Team with 10x starter and on his earliest, he scored 25.0 points, 4.0 assists, and 14.7 total rebounds per game.

Here is his rookie records:

Baylor's rookie records

SeasonAgeTeamMinutes Played per GameField Goal %3 Points FG %Free Throw %Total ReboundsAssists per GamePoints per Game

Regular

24

MNL

40.8

.408

-

.777

15.0

4.1

24.9

Playoffs

24

MNL

42.8

.402

-

.770

12.0

3.3

25.5

1958-59

24

MNL

41.0

.407

-

.776

14.7

4.0

25.0

Rick Barry

Rick Barry

Rick Barry

A goal poacher and a hoop catcher, that's how he played. Barry was a specialist on free throws with 89.3% scored over his entire career and even led the league free throw percentage 7 times. Rick Barry on his earliest career scored 25.7 points, 2.2 assists, and 10.6 total rebunds per game.

Here is his rookie records:

Barry's rookie records

SeasonAgeTeamMinutes Playes per GameField Goal %3 Points FG %Free Throw %Total ReboundsAssists per GamePoints per Game

1965-66

21

SFW

37.4

.439

-

.862

10.6

2.2

25.7

Luka Dončić

Luka Dončić

Luka Dončić

Dončić is a man with talent. Competing with Trae Young on Rookie of the Year title made him stronger. Trae Young was such a monster that year who only had slight differences from this guy. Dončić just couldn't stop scoring 3s and mastering the game with 21.2 points, 6.0 assists, and 7.8 total rebounds per game and the total rebound stat was what made him so amazing considering he played as a shooting guard. His rebound stat was even higher than any other shooting guards on the list and no doubt he achieved the first teenager in NBA history with a 30-point triple-double.

Here is his rookie records:

Dončić's rookie records

SeasonAgeTeamMinutes Played per GameField Goal %3 Points FG %Free Throw %Total ReboundsAssists per GamePoints per Game

2018-19

19

DAL

32.2

.427

.327

.713

7.8

6.0

21.2

Allen Iverson

Allen Iverson

Allen Iverson

Pace and 2 pointers had been his main weapon. The dreadlock guy who played for the league for 13 years had achieved 1x NBA MVP, 11x NBA All Star Game, and 2x NBA All Star Game MVP with all time career stats of 26.7 points, 6.2 assists, and 3.7 total rebounds per game. In his rookie year, he scored 23.5 points, 7.5 assists, and 4.1 total rebounds.

Here is his rookie records:

Iverson's rookie records

SeasonAgeTeamMinutes Played per GameField Goal %3 Points Field Goal %Free Throw %Total Rebounds per GameAssists per GamePoints per Game

1996-97

21

PHI

40.1

.416

.341

.702

4.1

7.5

23.5

Quick quiz

For each question, choose the best answer. The answer key is below.

  1. There was a player who scored 100 points in a game, who was he?
    • Allen Iverson
    • Michael Jordan
    • Wilt Chamberlain
    • Kevin Durant

Answer Key

  1. Wilt Chamberlain

© 2022 Mohammad Robbani Ardyanto

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