Pistons guard Jaden Ivey left off list of finalists for NBA Rookie of the Year

Detroit News

Detroit — Jaden Ivey had a sensational first season in the NBA with the Pistons, but it wasn’t enough for him to be considered in the league’s annual Rookie of the Year race.

The NBA announced the three finalists for the prestigious award on Friday and the winner will go to either Orlando Magic forward Paolo Banchero, Utah Jazz center Walker Kessler or Oklahoma City Thunder forward Jalen Williams.

Ivey, a 6-foot-4 guard, quickly emerged as one of the best rookies in the league while showcasing his playmaking abilities on a nightly basis for the Pistons. He finished the season averaging 16.3 points (third among rookies), 5.2 assists (first among rookies) and 3.9 rebounds per game.

Ivey only trailed Banchero in most games with 10 points, five rebounds and five assists among rookies this season. His season totals included marks of 1,204 points, 387 assists, 288 rebounds, and 120 made 3-pointers, which is the fifth time that a rookie recorded such minimums in NBA history.

Banchero is the front-runner for the Rookie of the Year award after totaling 20 points, 6.9 rebounds and 3.7 assists this season.

The season-ending injury to Cade Cunningham, who finished third in Rookie of the Year voting last season, allowed Ivey to develop at a much faster rate as he played 31.1 minutes per game, second behind Banchero’s 33.7.

Ivey summed up his rookie season with a tweet on Thursday that read, “Grateful for all the ups and downs this season has taught me. Hungry for more. YR 1.”

Ivey may not be a finalist for the Rookie of the Year award, but he should earn a nod on one of the league’s All-Rookie teams. Pistons rookie center Jalen Duren could be in the running for the same honor.

The finalists for the league’s other marquee awards were also revealed on Friday, including Most Valuable Player, Defensive Player of the Year, Sixth Man of the Year, Most Improved Player and Coach of the Year.

mcurtis@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @MikeACurtis2

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