NBA Rookie power rankings: Ausar Thompson right in the mix

Detroit Pistons forward Ausar Thompson (9) dunks Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
Detroit Pistons forward Ausar Thompson (9) dunks Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports /
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Detroit Pistons, Ausar Thompson
Detroit Pistons forward Ausar Thompson (9) blocks a shot of Miami Heat guard Tyler Herro (14) Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports /

NBA Rookie power rankings week 1

#2: Ausar Thompson

Ausar Thompson hasn’t even shot the ball well, yet has arguably been the most impactful rookie, a testament to all of the other things he does well.

He’s only 7th among rookies in scoring after shooting just 32 percent from the field so far and averaging 8.5 points per game.

But he’s leading all rookies by a mile in rebounding, averaging 10.2 per game, which is unreal considering he’s a wing. Wembanyama is a distant second at 7.3 per game and he’s a 7-foot-4 center. This isn’t a fluke either, as Thompson’s rebounding is sustainable, as he is not only uber-athletic, but he gets after the boards and has great court sense and a nose for the ball.

Thompson is also leading all rookies in assists at 4.25 per game, ahead of Scoot Henderson, who is a point guard, the primary playmaker for Portland and has the ball in his hands a lot more. Thompson is a secondary ballhandler for the Pistons and still leading all rookies in assists, which shows you what kind of passer he is. He’s had some beautiful dimes already this season, and has bought into Monty Williams’ .5 system more than any other player on the Pistons.

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Thompson is also second in blocks with 2.5 per game, just behind Chet Holmgren, who again is a 7-foot plus center. Ausar Thompson is third in efficiency overall and is a big reason the Pistons have gotten off to a solid start on the defensive end.

As impactful as Thompson has been, imagine how good he’s going to be when he starts making shots. Be excited, Detroit.

#1: Chet Holmgren

After beating the Pistons last night, the OKC Thunder are off to a 3-1 start and Chet Holmgren has been a huge part of it. Though technically a second-year player, Holmgren missed all of last season so is still considered a rookie.

He is currently third among rookies in scoring with 15 points per game, 3rd in rebounds (6.2), tied for 4th in assists (2), 1st in blocks (2.75), 2nd in steals (1), 3rd in field goal percentage (60%), 2nd in 3-point percentage (60%) and 1st in efficiency by a mile.

Holmgren’s rim protection is legit, as the Pistons found out last night, as he harassed their bigs into poor shooting nights while racking up four blocks.

Unlike the others in the top four, Holmgren is doing this on a good team with playoff aspirations, which also gives him a boost in the rankings, not that he needs it, as his all-around game has been huge for the Thunder.

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