End of season awards are finally here, and the Clippers got their first “winners” with the news that Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Landry Shamet were named to the NBA All-Rookie Second Team. This is the first time the Clippers have had any players named to an All-Rookie Team since 2010-2011, when they also had two rookies make it: Blake Griffin and Eric Bledsoe.
The teams were made through a simple voting process, which seemingly worked better this year (most players on the teams deserved to be there). There were 100 voters for the teams, with each vote for a 1st Team bid giving the player two points, and a vote for the 2nd Team adding one point. Therefore, the maximum for each player was 200 points, and usually around 150 points or so are needed to make the 1st Team.
This year, Shai got 40 votes for the 1st Team and 58 votes for the 2nd Team (two voters, incredibly, didn’t have him on their ballots), giving him 138 points. This was just shy of Marvin Bagley III, who was the 5th starter on the 1st Team with 156 points. Landry got three 1st Team votes of his own, as well as 79 for the 2nd Team, giving him 85 points, easily enough to clear his spot on the roster (Kevin Huerter, with the last spot, had just 45 points). Both guys were clearly well-recognized, though Shai’s missing out on the 1st Team is a bit disappointing.
Shai averaged 10.8 points, 2.8 rebounds, and 3.3 assists per game on 47.6/36.7/80 shooting splits, and played in all 82 games for the Clippers. If postseason contributions were counted Shai probably would have made the cut for 1st Team, but alas, it’s a regular season award. Even still, I would have put him in over Bagley, who was very good but missed 20 games with an injury. Shamet averaged 10.9 points, 2.2 rebounds, and 2.3 assists on 41.4/45/79.5 shooting splits, and while a 2nd Team outcome was expected for him, he’s still clearly one of the most promising players in the 2018 Draft class.
The full teams can be found below. 12 other rookies received votes, with the next two highest points-getters being Mikal Bridges (Suns) and Kevin Knox (Knicks). Jerome Robinson, the Clippers’ 3rd rookie, did not get any votes.
Really, the 2018 class was absolutely stacked, and every player who made an All-Rookie Team (with the possible exception of Colin Sexton, of whom I’m still skeptical) has a very bright NBA future. Shai and Landry are no exception, and they will hopefully be the Clippers’ starting backcourt for many years to come. Congratulations to Shai and Landry!