Ricky Rubio is boat-racing the NBA Rookie of the Year field, according to Marginal Win Score

“Rubio! Rubio! Rubio!”

The electrifying Ricky Rubio, rookie SG/PG for the Minnesota Timberwolves, is erasing all doubts about his ability to compete and succeed on the NBA level.  He is off to a fantastic start.  According to the metric “Marginal Win Score”, and the off-shoot “Value” ranking, Rubio is the most valuable rookie to date, and the only other rookie who is giving him any chase whatsoever is the SF/PF Markieff Morris of the Phoenix Suns.

Here is a ranking of the rookies, using Marginal Win Score (see GLOSSARY to the right under “Courtside Reading” for full explanation), and projecting the number of wins and losses, wins above 0.500%, and “Value” each player will provide his team over the course of the 66 game season (Value is “Wins” plus “Wins above 0.500%).  To make the ranking, each rookie must have played at least 100 minutes so far.

RANK WS oppWS MWS W% Wins66 >0.5% V66
R Rubio 10.35 3.91 3.22 1.048 8.7__(-0.4) 4.5 13.2
M Morris 14.15 6.29 3.93 1.169 6.8__(-1.0) 3.9 10.7
C Parsons 11.88 4.71 3.58 1.111 5.8__(-0.6) 3.2 8.9
J Leuer 11.94 6.97 2.48 0.924 4.8__0.4 2.2 7.1
E Kanter 15.27 7.36 3.95 1.172 4.2__(-0.6) 2.4 6.6
K Leonard 12.61 10.32 1.14 0.696 4.4__1.9 1.3 5.7
N Vucevic 16.84 12.08 2.38 0.906 2.8__0.3 1.2 4.1
K Irving 6.68 7.19 -0.26 0.459 3.4__4.0 -0.2 3.2
D Williams 8.69 8.55 0.07 0.515 2.9__2.8 0.1 2.9
A Burcs 4.45 0.61 1.92 0.828 2.1__0.5 0.8 2.9
C Singleton 7.65 8.51 -0.43 0.439 2.8__3.5 -0.3 2.5
I Thomas 6.58 5.79 0.39 0.569 2.2__1.6 0.3 2.5
J Harrelson 10.25 11.09 -0.41 0.431 2.4__2.9 -0.3 2.1
K Walker 4.64 5.41 -0.38 0.437 2.4__3.2 -0.4 2.1
T Thompson 9.43 10.34 -0.45 0.425 2.0__2.8 -0.4 1.6
M Brooks 7.99 10.79 -1.39 0.265 1.8__4.9 -1.6 0.2
K Thompson 1.69 4.49 -1.39 0.266 1.3__3.7 -1.2 0.1
J Pargo -0.14 5.01 -2.57 0.066 0.3__4.2 -1.9 -1.6
N Cole 1.35 7.21 -2.93 0.001 0.0__5.8 -2.9 -2.9
B Biyombo 5.52 14.36 -4.42 -0.247 (-0.8)__3.9 -2.3 -3.1
J Fredette 0.42 9.37 -4.47 -0.256 (-1.7)__8.3 -5.1 -6.8
B Knight 4.71 14.02 -4.65 -0.287 (-2.3)__11.0 -6.6 -8.9
AVERAGE 7.86 7.93 -0.03 0.497

Rubio rules, Jimmer sucks

As you can see, Rubio and Morris are the only two rookies who are projected to provide double digit Value to their teams.  Rubio is a superstar in the making.  He looks like the Second Coming of Jason Kidd.  Morris, the lesser respected of the two Morris brothers, is also a dynamo.  He looks like an outstanding middle of the first round pick.

Another player who is adding tremendous value is SF Chandler Parsons of the Houston Rockets.  Parsons is not a dynamic scorer, but he does the little things that produce wins, and he does them well.

In the fourth spot is the Milwaukee Bucks PF/C Jon Leuer.  Raise your hand if you thought he would be a productive pro. I am a graduate of Wisconsin and I follow the Badgers closely and I thought Leuer had no shot at all to be a good pro.  He looked like a big man “drifter” who was too weak to bang in the Association.  Not so.  The Bucks are showing once again that they are the Masters of the Second Round, Disasters of the First Round.  If they could only hit on a first rounder every decade or so, they might have a good team.

The top pick Kyrie Irving has been okay, but nothing more for the Cavaliers.  Same thing with Derrick Williams of the Timberwolves.  I’ll give each some more time, but usually superstars come out of the gates playing like superstars, but each is very young so we have seen dramatic improvement from real young players from year one to year two (LeBron comes to mind, but he was out of position as a rookie).

On the back end of the race, excluding those who have not even gotten off the pine, are Brandon Knight of the Detroit Pistons, and Jimmer Fredette of the Kings.  I guess we can put a hold on “JimmerMania”.  He looks awful!!  And Brandon Knight, who didn’t project well, is really crushing the Pistons chances of doing anything this season.  Both look like big-time “Misses”>

One final comment.  I keep hearing what a difference Norris Cole was/is making for the Miami Heat.  Ahhh, not according to Marginal Win Score, unless you mean “difference” in the negative sense.  He’s been terrible.  His personal Win Score is well below average.  In college he rebounded well, but I’m always leery of high college Win Scores that are produced as a result of rebounding way above position (unless the player is a power forward).  It always seems that those kind of players get to the NBA and no longer believe that rebounding is part of their job description.  Memo to Cole: you can’t shoot and you can’t protect the ball.  Time to get your knuckles dirty and start rebounding.  You might as well do something positive for the Heat.

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3 Responses to “Ricky Rubio is boat-racing the NBA Rookie of the Year field, according to Marginal Win Score”

  1. J.D. Mo Says:

    What’s more surprising: That a 6’2″ guard who played in the Horizon League at Cleveland State has a total rebounding percentage .1 percent higher than Brandon Jennings, or that Jon Leuer, a 6’11” big man who played in the Big Ten, has a defensive rebounding rate (16.0%) that is 8 percent lower than Ersan Ilyasova’s (24.0%)?

    To compare, Markieff Morris’ defensive rebounding rate is 23.4%, and his total rate is 15.0%, still lower than Ersan’s 15.9% but higher than Leuer’s 12.9.

    For further comparison, Udonis Haslem is crashing like a madman off the bench for the Heat (19.7% total rate, 6th in league) but his career overall rate, mostly as a starter, is 15.6%.

    • tywill33 Says:

      Hey JD:

      I’m not surprised that Ilyasova is a better defensive rebounder than Leuer and Leuer is a better offensive rebounder than Ilyasova. Defensive rebounding relies to a large extent on the ability to shield your man from the basketball, and to establish premium rebounding position, whereas offensive rebounding is more a function of elusiveness and hustle. Because of that, the hulking Ilyasova is better equipped for the former and less equipped for the latter than the lithe and athletic Leuer.

      However, to maintain his promising beginning, Leuer must improve his defensive rebounding and over time he must get stronger.

      Thank you for the comment.

      • J.D. Mo Says:

        Brockman continues to lead the Bucks in offensive rebounding rate, with Gooden, Ilyasova, then Leuer behind him in that order. Brockman’s numbers are garbage time numbers, it should be noted. Ersan continues to lead the Bucks forwards in rebounding, though, as we saw last night, it’s not doing the Bucks much good, not with perimeter players like Udrih, Jackson and Delfino having bad games on the same night (and Bogut too).

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