MANILA, Philippines — Not a lot was expected from the NBA Class of 2013 to begin with. After all, most scouts already have their eyes fixated on next year’s draft — one that features a talent pool that can rival the famous Class of 2003 lead by LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Carmelo Anthony.
Despite the low expectations, this batch of NBA freshmen has managed to even underwhelm. Only three are averaging double-figures in scoring and two of those three have missed a combined 26 games.
Let’s look at the lottery picks of this draft and how they have fared so far.
1. Anthony Bennett, Cleveland Cavaliers
2.2 points, 1.9 rebounds, 0.2 assists, 26.6% FG shooting, 37.5% FT shooting
Out of shape and out of the rotation, Bennett is undoubtedly the worst number one pick we have seen on court since we started watching the NBA almost two decades ago. Who could be worse? Heck, Kwame Brown and the ‘Kandi Man’ Michael Olowokandi have both been better.
Highlight game: 9 points, 5 rebounds in a 96-126 loss to San Antonio.
2. Victor Oladipo, Orlando Magic
13.8 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 41.3% FG shooting, 75.7% FT shooting
Oladipo has been solid, but not spectacular for a rebuilding Magic team. We’re not complaining, though, as the dynamo guard has proven to be up to the task of leading Orlando in the near future. There would be further bumps, but expect Oladipo to improve as the season wears on.
Highlight game: 26 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists, 3 steals in a 125-126 loss to Philadelphia
3. Otto Porter, Washington Wizards
1.0 points, 2.3 rebounds, 0.3 assists, 18.2% FG shooting
A rusty Porter played a grand total of 48 minutes since returning from a hip injury that kept him out of training camp and the season’s first 19 games. 4 points and 5 fouls in 4 games just won’t cut it in the NBA, especially if you are the 3rd overall pick.
Highlight game: 4 points, 4 rebounds in a 99-101 loss to Atlanta
4. Cody Zeller, Charlotte Bobcats
5.3 points, 4.3 rebounds, 1.0 assists, 37.7% FG shooting, 71.8% FT shooting
It wasn’t too long ago that Zeller was being fancied as a top overall pick. Now that he’s in the pros, it’s very clear why the Charlotte big man isn’t worth the gamble. He has looked lost and is shooting an atrocious 35 of 88 (39.8%) within 5 feet of the basket.
Highlight game: 10 points, 5 rebounds in 105-88 win over Philadelphia
5. Alex Len, Phoenix Suns
1.8 points, 1.8 rebounds, 0.3 assists, 42.9% FG shooting, 50.0% FT shooting
Len was making noise as a probable top pick days before the draft, but fell all the way to fifth as concerns about his play and health mounted. Those have been proven true so far, as Len has just 7 points and 8 fouls in 31 minutes of action all season long.
Highlight game: 2 points, 4 rebounds in a 106-113 loss to Sacramento
6. Nerlens Noel, Philadelphia 76ers
After a stellar freshman year at Kentucky (where he averaged 10.5 points, 9.5 rebounds, 2.1 steals and 4.4 blocks), Noel hasn’t seen a minute of NBA action as he recovers from an ACL tear he suffered last February. And though the team hasn’t announced it straight-up, Noel might not see court time at all this season.
7. Ben McLemore, Sacramento Kings
8.9 points, 3.1 rebounds, 1.0 assists, 34.9% FG shooting, 78.9% FT shooting
McLemore has been getting the shots in Sac-Town (8.9 per game), but he hasn’t taken advantage of the opportunity by making merely over a third of them. The arrival of Rudy Gay dampens his rise and the rookie responded with an atrocious four-game stretch, where he normed 3.8 points on 4 of 25 shooting (16.0%).
Highlight game: 20 points, 6 rebounds, 2 steals, 4 three-pointers in 100-106 loss to Los Angeles
8. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Detroit Pistons
7.3 points, 2.5 rebounds, 1.0 assists, 36.4% FG shooting, 78.3% FT shooting
Like McLemore, KCW has been receiving a lot of on-court exposure from coach Mo Cheeks. However, he hasn’t looked like he deserves the playing time, shooting lethargically from the field while offering nothing else in other categories that justifies the 28 minutes per game he’s been getting.
Highlight game: 16 points, 4 rebounds in 94-121 loss to Minnesota
9. Trey Burke, Utah Jazz
12.4 points, 3.3 rebounds, 4.9 assists, 37.4% FG shooting, 89.7% FT shooting
A broken finger kept Burke out for the first part of the season, but the Michigan alum has come along nicely for the Jazz. In a team devoid of other legit point guard options, Burke holds the key to Utah’s attack and rightly so, as he has shown the aggressiveness to go with the best of them.
Highlight game: 19 points, 10 rebounds, 7 assists, 2 steals in a 102-112 loss to Sacramento
10. CJ McCollum, Portland Trail Blazers
The Lehigh standout has been out due to a broken bone in his left foot and just as he was on his way to return later this month, McCollum fractured the same foot in practice recently and will need surgery. It seems we will have to wait longer to see him suit up for the rampaging Blazers.
11. Michael Carter-Williams, Philadelphia 76ers
17.7 points, 5.8 rebounds, 7.3 assists, 40.8% FG shooting, 67.1% FT shooting
There is no doubt that MCW has been this year’s top rookie and it’s just a pity that we haven’t seen more of him because of that foot infection. Still, he has been a joy to follow this year, a triple-double threat night in and night out for a rebuilding Sixers team.
Highlight game: 27 points, 12 rebounds, 10 assists, 3 steals in 126-125 win over Orlando
12. Steven Adams, Oklahoma City Thunder
4.0 points, 4.8 rebounds, 0.9 assists, 50.8% FG shooting, 65.9% FT shooting
The New Zealander has been a pleasant surprise for Scott Brooks, as he has been an able backup at center. His solid play at the pivot has even elicited rumbling in OKC that Adams should start over Kendrick Perkins. With the way he’s been producing, that isn’t too farfetched at all.
Highlight game: 17 points, 10 rebounds, 3 blocks in 119-110 win over Detroit
13. Kelly Olynyk, Boston Celtics
7.4 points, 5.3 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 40.2% FG shooting, 95.7% FT shooting
Olynyk is a bad shooter by big man standards and he hasn’t been able to lock down the starting center spot in a Boston team that is lacking options up front. The ex-Gonzaga star has missed time due to injury, too, and that isn’t helping his case for more playing time.
Highlight game: 14 points, 8 rebounds, 2 steals in 97-87 win over Utah
14. Shabazz Muhammad, Minnesota Timberwolves
1.0 points, 1.0 rebounds, 15.4% FG shooting, 75.0% FT shooting
For a guy who believes he deserves to be picked first, Muhammad is delivering pathetic numbers. 8 points on 2 of 13 shooting in 8 games? There’s no question why Rick Adelman hasn’t given this guy a lot of opportunities.
Highlight game: 4 points, 1 rebound in 103-113 loss to Oklahoma City
Who has been your top rookie this year? Who has been the worst? Share them with us in the comments section. – Rappler.com
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