NBA

Orlando Magic’s Paolo Banchero headlines NBA All-Rookie first team

By Sports Desk May 08, 2023

Orlando Magic wing Paolo Banchero headlines the NBA All-Rookie first team as the only unanimous selection.

The league revealed the first and second teams on Monday, and the 20-year-old Banchero was the only player to be selected to the first team on all 100 ballots.

Banchero, who was previously announced as the NBA Rookie of the Year on April 25, is joined on the first team by Utah Jazz centre Walker Kessler, Indiana Pacers small forward Bennedict Mathurin, Sacramento Kings small forward Keegan Murray and Oklahoma City Thunder wing Jalen Williams.

The second team featured two pairs of teammates – Jaden Ivey and Jalen Duren of the Detroit Pistons and Jabari Smith Jr. and Tari Eason from the Houston Rockets – as well as San Antonio Spurs power forward Jeremy Sochan.

Banchero, who was the first pick of last year’s draft, received 98 out of the 100 possible first-place votes for Rookie of the Year award, with Kessler receiving the other two to finish in second. Williams was the third finalist.

Banchero led all rookies in scoring with an average of 20.0 points per game, while his average of 3.7 assists ranked third among all qualifying first-year players and average of 6.9 rebounds placed fourth.

Kessler, who was the 22nd overall pick of the 2022 draft, ranked fourth among all players with an average of 2.34 blocks – the most by any rookie since the New York Knicks’ Mitchell Robinson averaged 2.44 in 2018-19. Kessler’s average of 8.4 rebounds per game ranked second among rookies, and he also averaged 9.2 points.

Williams, who was selected 12th, averaged 14.1 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.37 steals – the highest average by any rookie.

Duren led all rookies in rebounds with an average of 8.9 per game, while Ivey’s average of 5.2 assists were the most by any first-year player.

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