Pistons: Jaden Ivey’s complete game keeps him high on Rookie Ladder

Detroit Pistons guard Jaden Ivey Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Detroit Pistons guard Jaden Ivey Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports /

Coming into the season, Jaden Ivey of the Detroit Pistons had the third-highest odds to win Rookie of the Year.

But the play of Paolo Banchero quickly squashed that idea, as the Magic rookie was putting up 23 points, eight rebounds and 3.6 assists before injuring his ankle.

With Banchero sidelined for the last seven games, it has given rookies Bennedict Mathurin and Jaden Ivey a chance to claim the top two spots on the NBA Rookie Ladder, which they have held for the last two weeks.

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It has been a season of adjustments for Jaden Ivey, who has had to take on a larger role since Cade Cunningham went out with injury. Ivey had to miss last night’s game with a minor injury of his own, but prior to that was putting up all-around numbers that should et him some attention for Rookie of the Year this season.

Detroit Pistons: Jaden Ivey filling out the stat sheet

Coming into the season, Ivey was mostly known for his blazing speed and ability to get to the rim in transition. He wowed with highlight-reel dunks, but has since shown that he is more than just a speedster.

Ivey is currently 3rd in scoring behind Banchero and Mathurin, but is at or near the top of the rookie leaderboards in several other categories as well:

  • Tied for 1st in games played
  • 1st overall in minutes
  • 1st in made field goals
  • 4th in made 3-pointers
  • 3rd in free throws made and attempts
  • 5th in total rebounds
  • 1st in assists (nearly twice as many as the next guy)
  • 2nd in steals
  • 9th in blocks
  • 2nd in overall points scored

I don’t think the scoring really surprises anyone, but the fact that Ivey is 5th overall in rebounds is amazing, as he is the only guard in the top 10, a category that is led by his teammate Jalen Duren.

Ivey is a better defender and rebounder than advertised, and his rebounding in particular has been big for a team that often plays without a true center on the floor. Between him and Cade, you could easily see the Pistons’ backcourt leading the NBA in rebounding.

Ivey had to miss the last game, but let’s hope he gets back soon, as he is putting up special numbers as a rookie for the Detroit Pistons while showing he is the complete package as a guard.

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