Jabari Parker slight favorite over Wiggins to win Rookie of the Year

2014 nba draft class

2014 nba draft class

Milwaukee’s Jabari Parker was listed by Bovada as the slight favorite to win the 2014-15 Rookie of the Year over No. 1 pick Andrew Wiggins.

Here are the 2014-15 Bovada odds, per SportsInsights.com:
Jabari Parker, Bucks +500
Andrew Wiggins, Cavaliers, +550
Nerlens Noel, Sixers, +900
Julius Randle, Lakers, +900
Doug McDermott, Bulls, +1,000
Elfrid Payton, Magic, +1,000
Dante Exum, Jazz, +1,000
Nik Stauskas, Kings, +1,200
Shabazz Napier, Heat, +1,200

It’s not a huge surprise to see Parker atop the leaderboard. He was billed as the more “NBA-ready” prospect with a better current offensive repertoire. He can easily become Milwaukee’s lead scorer, albeit in a crowded frontcourt with John Henson, Ersan Ilyasova and the troubled Larry Sanders.

In Cleveland, Wiggins won’t ever have to be the lead offensive option. Kyrie Irving is the team’s star, a former Rookie of the Year himself and has averaged 20.7 points per game for his career so far. Dion Waiters also has averaged 15.3 points per game in his two seasons. Wiggins will be able to grow naturally as a third or fourth option offensively and shine with his defense and athleticism.

If one recalls, Anthony Bennett was listed as sixth in the 2013-14 odds. Michael Carter-Williams, initially listed as fifth, overtook post-draft favorites Trey Burke and Victor Oladipo (eventual runner-up) to win the award.

AP Photo/Kathy Willens

  • Harv 21

    We blew the draft. Figures.

  • Pat Leonard

    I’m surprised Parker isn’t a heavy favorite. Nobody cares about defense in the ROY voting, so you’re going 100% offense stats. Parker is walking into a situation where they’re going to give him the ball and look to him to score a lot. Wiggins is coming onto a team where he’s maybe the 4th option on offense. Add in the fact that Parker is supposed to be well ahead of Wiggins right now as offensive player, and this is a no-brainer.

  • The_Real_Shamrock

    Wiggins has a lot to learn not to mention maturing physically I see not only Parker outdoing him his first season but possibly quite a few other guys. People who expect Wiggins to come in and be the next LBJ will be greatly disappointed because those comparisons are probably two years away at a minimum.

  • mgbode

    and, if I was a betting man, then I would throw some money down on Embiid. Not only would he also be going into a fast-paced system (more counting stats, which voters love), but he’d be their frontcourt scorer as well, and, if he was known to be healthy, then he’d be among the favorites.

    Not to mention, if he does come and play well coming back from injury, then that storyline is going to help propel him to more headlines, which also helps in such award voting.

  • mgbode

    who expects Wiggins to come in and be the next LBJ? heck, who thinks we’ll be able to compare them in 2 years?

    and, Parker has much more maturing on his body to do than Ender. Jabari has built-in ROY advantages as Pat explained, but not for these reasons.

  • Pat Leonard

    Yep, I like the Paul George comparisons much better than the LBJ comparisons.

  • jeremysexton

    ROY comes down to PPG, team wins, and draft position. Parker is almost certainly scoring more than Wiggins, but the Cavs should again be the better team. The question will be whether the Cavs make the playoffs while the Bucks miss. If so, then I think Wiggins has the leg up.

  • Pat Leonard

    Team wins? Michael Carter-Williams won ROY last year. His team was absolutely awful and he was drafted outside the top 10. It comes down to stats.

  • jeremysexton

    Last year was a tricky year because all of the rookies sucked.

    Those 3 factors explain 75% of ROY voting, though.

    This article is a bit old, but not much has changed: http://wagesofwins.com/2009/04/30/how-sportswriters-are-like-coaches-explaining-the-vote-for-rookie-of-the-year/

  • mgbode

    Kobe Bryant. Wiggins is a SG ;)

  • jeremysexton

    Whoops, Mason Plumlee was actually very good as a rookie last season. But, MCW was drafted higher and scored more and ROY is definitely about YAY Points!

  • mgbode

    Faster pace = More counting stats.

    Also, MCW started off well and people ignored Philly once they went into the dumpster, so that helped him too.

  • The_Real_Shamrock
  • Pat Leonard

    Not necessarily trying to be combative, but I don’t see that in the ROY history. Most of the guys who won played on bad teams and put up good stats. Damian Lillard (33-49), Blake Griffin (32-50), Tyreke Evans (25-57), Kevin Durant (20-62), etc.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NBA_Rookie_of_the_Year_Award

    Team wins definitely don’t seem to be a factor.

  • jeremysexton

    You have to look at who their competition was, though. If a team has a top 5 pick, they were almost certainly terrible the season prior and are probably going to be bad the next year.

    Take Damian Lillard for example. The other competition that season? Anthony Davis (27-55), Bradley Beal (29-53), and Andre Drummond (29-53).

    I’m not saying it’s the most important factor, but the regressions run on past ROY voting shows it to be significant. Ultimately, points and draft position are the most important, but the team’s record does play a role.

    I think in a race like Wiggins/Parker, it will not only play a role subconsciously but be an explicit part of the national conversation. Both teams missed the playoffs last year and were bad. If one goes to the playoffs and the other doesn’t, expect every NBA journalist to talk about how much that player has helped that team turn things around.