No surprise here. Michael Carter-Williams will be named the NBA's rookie of the year this week, sources have confirmed.
The 76ers point guard's receiving the award, first reported Saturday afternoon by Philly.com, will be perhaps the most obvious and anticlimactic outcome of the 2014 NBA awards season.
Carter-Williams joins Allen Iverson (1996-97) as Sixers rookies of the year after posting one of the best campaigns by a first-year player in league history.
It was a season in which the 6-foot-6, 185-pounder was mentioned in the same breath as Hall of Famers Oscar Robertson and Magic Johnson.
Carter-Williams led all rookies in scoring (16.7 points), assists (6.3), rebounds (6.2), and steals (1.86). He, Robertson (1960-61), and Alvan Adams (1975-76) are the only players to lead all rookies in scoring, assists, and rebounds in a season, dating back to the 1950-51 season.
Carter-Williams also joined Robertson and Johnson (1979-80) as the only rookies to average at least 16.0 points, 6.0 rebounds, and 6.0 assists.
The 11th overall pick out of Syracuse was also named Eastern Conference rookie of the month four times. He's the first player in franchise history to win the award more than twice in a season.
Carter-Williams finished the season with 16 double-doubles and two triple-doubles.
One of his best performances came in a 113-108 victory over the Boston Celtics on April 14. He finished with 21 points, a career-high 14 rebounds, 6 assists, and 4 steals to become the first rookie to reach those numbers in a single game since Bernard King in March 1978.
Filling up a stat sheet was never a problem this season for the Hamilton, Mass., native. The uncertainty was his ability to lead a franchise.
Carter-Williams put some of those doubts to rest during the final two months of the season. The game appeared to slow down for the 22-year-old. He played better defense, shot a higher percentage, and became the unquestioned team leader.
"He's been a true floor general," Sixers power forward Thaddeus Young said.
In March, Carter-Williams averaged 14.9 points, 8.4 rebounds, and 6.5 assists to become the first rookie to average at least 14.0 points, 8.0 rebounds, and 6.0 assists in a month since Grant Hill (23.8, 8.9, and 6.3 in April 1995).
"He has learned how to take a system that we haven't . . . altered anything and get . . . comfortable on how to maximize it for himself and the team," Sixers coach Brett Brown said.
Carter-Williams, who could not be reached for comment, missed 12 games because of injuries. He was sidelined seven games with right-knee soreness and a skin infection and missed four games with a bruise on the arch of his left foot. He also was held out of another game with right-shoulder soreness.
Month Games Min. FG% 3FG% FT% Reb. Ast. TO Stl. Pts.
Oct./Nov. 13 36.2 39.7 34.4 65.7 5.3 7.2 3.4 2.9 17.2
December 6 35.7 44.9 17.6 80.6 5.8 8.2 3.8 3.5 19.3
January 17 33.3 38.8 27.3 70.5 5.6 5.6 3.1 1.5 16.5
February 10 33.7 38.4 18.5 69.7 4.3 4.7 4.6 1.0 16.7
March 16 35.4 37.7 21.2 66.7 8.4 6.5 4.1 1.8 14.9
April 8 32.5 52.5 42.9 75.6 7.5 6.4 1.9 1.0 17.6
Totals 70 34.5 40.5 26.4 70.3 6.2 6.3 3.5 1.9 16.7