Paolo Banchero is Rookie of the Year in near-unanimous fashion – rezal404

Paolo Banchero Magic NBA

FILE – Paolo Banchero #5 of the Orlando Magic celebrates during the second half against the New Orleans Pelicans at the Smoothie King Center on February 27, 2023 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images/AFP

Orlando Magic forward Paolo Banchero was the runaway winner of the NBA Rookie of the Year, the league announced Tuesday.

Banchero received 98 of the 100 first-place votes from a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters to earn the Wilt Chamberlain Trophy.

Banchero averaged 20 points, 6.9 rebounds and 3.7 assists in 72 games (all starts) after being the No. 1 overall selection by the Magic in the 2022 draft. He made 85 3-pointers and recorded 60 steals and 39 blocked shots.

Banchero, 20, received 494 total points in the balloting, more than double runner-up Jalen Williams (241) of the Oklahoma City Thunder. Utah Jazz big man Walker Kessler (114) was third and received the other two first-place votes.

Banchero, who played college basketball at Duke, is the third Orlando player to win the award. The others are Shaquille O’Neal (1993) and Mike Miller (2001). Miller is Banchero’s agent.

Banchero had six 30-point efforts, second among Magic rookies behind O’Neal (10).

Williams, the 12th overall pick from Santa Clara, averaged 14.1 points, 4.5 rebounds and 3.3 assists in 75 games (62 starts).

Kessler, the 22nd selection from Auburn, was a major force as a defender by blocking 173 shots, at 2.3 average. He averaged 9.2 points and 8.4 rebounds in 74 games (40 starts). He was acquired by the Jazz two weeks after the draft in the trade that sent three-time Defensive Player of the Year Rudy Gobert to the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Kessler was drafted by the Memphis Grizzlies and traded to Minnesota on draft night.

Bennedict Mathurin (27) of the Indiana Pacers was fourth, Keegan Murray (21) of the Sacramento Kings was fifth. Jaden Ivey (3) of the Detroit Pistons also received votes. Murray set an NBA rookie record with 206 3-pointers.

Field Level Media


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