How Much Do You Know About Famous NBA Rookies of the Year?


By: John Miller

5 Min Quiz

Image: YouTube

About This Quiz

To be a rookie means being a new member of an athletic group in his or her first full season in that particular sport. The National Basketball Association, commonly known as the NBA, designates a ‘Rookie of the Year’ Award to the top rookie(s) of the regular season and was started after the 1952-1953 season. 

The lucky rookie is selected by a panel of Canadian and United States broadcasters or sportswriters who each casts three placement votes with each carrying various points. The winner of the award is the player(s) with the highest point total.

Some of the greatest ‘Rookie of the Year’ awardees include Michael Jordan of Chicago Bulls, Shaquille O’Neal of Orlando Magic, LeBron James of Cleveland Cavaliers and Kevin Durant of Seattle SuperSonics, among others. There have also been a few Rookies of the Year awardees who were not born in the United States such as Pau Gasol of Spain, Kyrie Irving of Australia, Andrew Wiggins of Canada, and Patrick Ewing of Jamaica.

Though they may be inexperienced and somewhat underrated, many rookies have landed slam-dunks, going on to be some of the greatest players in NBA history. Can you name them all?

Malcolm Brogdon won the Rookie of the Year (ROTY) award in 2016-17. He plays for which team?

In the draft lottery era, only one second-round pick has ever won ROTY. That'd be Brodgon, who averaged 10.2 points per game with Milwaukee.


Michael Carter-Williams was ROTY in 2015-16. What position does he play?

Carter-Williams is an exceptional point guard who averaged nearly 17ppg in his first year with the 76ers. He played about 34 minutes per game.


Which team drafted 2008-09 ROTY Derrick Rose?

The Bulls were high on Rose, so they selected him with the number one pick. He played 81 games and averaged nearly 17ppg during his rookie season.


Damon Lillard won ROTY after the 2012-13 season, during which he averaged ____ points per game.

Lillard is often unstoppable on offense. During his rookie season with Portland, he averaged 19ppg and then won the ROTY award by unanimous decision.


Chris Paul won ROTY in 2005-06. What position does he play?

New Orleans took Paul with the fourth draft pick. He responded by averaging about 16ppg. He's now a star player for the Clippers.


In 2010-11, Blake Griffin was selected as ROTY. Where did he play ball in college?

Griffin was one of the most highly touted players ever at Oklahoma. He played only two years of college ball and averaged nearly 23ppg before heading off to the draft.


What's the most recent team to have drafted Rookies of the Year in consecutive seasons?

Minnesota scored huge with Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins. Both players were number one picks, and both went on to win ROTY.


True or false: Was Bulls star Michael Jordan a Rookie of the Year?

It's true, Jordan was on fire right out of the gate -- he averaged more than 28ppg his rookie season. Later in his career, he averaged more than 37ppg.


Kyrie Irving won ROTY in 2011-12. Where was he selected in the NBA draft?

Irving was clearly a star coming out of college. The Cavaliers picked him at number one, and he responded by earning ROTY honors.


Kevin Durant was ROTY in 2007-08. Where did he play in college?

Durant was a stellar player at Texas, where he played just a single season. That year, he averaged nearly 26ppg, and he garnered a reputation as one of the best pure shooters the game has seen in years.


True or false: Was Magic Johnson selected as a Rookie of the Year?

Johnson was the first overall pick by the Lakers and led the team to a title in his very first season. But he wasn't picked as Rookie of the Year.


Magic Johnson led the Lakers to an NBA title in his first season, yet he wasn't picked for Rookie of the Year. Who beat him out of the award?

Johnson's rookie year was one for the ages ... but his archrival Larry Bird, of Celtics fame, beat him out of Rookie of the Year.


Andrew Wiggins won ROTY in 2014-15. He played college basketball at which school?

Wiggins played just one year of college ball ... at Kansas. He was too good to stay amateur and wound up as the number one draft pick.


Allen Iverson was Rookie of the Year in 1997. How many times did he lead the league in scoring?

Iverson is just 6 feet tall but can shoot the lights out. He won the NBA scoring title four times in his 14 seasons.


Blake Griffin won ROTY in 2010-11 as a member of the _____.

The Clippers drafted Griffin at the number one spot. In his very first game, he scored 20 points and grabbed a nearly mind-boggling 14 rebounds.


Spurs star Tim Duncan was the 1998 Rookie of the Year. What position did he play?

Duncan is regarded as one of the best power forwards in the history of the league. With his dependable offense and stalwart defense, he led the Spurs to five NBA titles.


2001 ROTY Mike Miller is best known for which skill?

Miller is a long-range bomber -- he makes three-point shots looks like a walk in the park. During his rookie season with Orlando, he shot better than 40% from downtown.


True or false: Was LeBron James voted as Rookie of the Year?

James was probably the most highly anticipated rookie in the history of the league. He averaged 40 minutes per game and scored more than 20ppg during his rookie campaign.


Who won the 2004-05 Rookie of the Year award?

During his rookie season with Charlotte, Okafor had an amazing run, recording 19 straight double-doubles. Injuries forced him out the league, but he's attempting a comeback.


2014-15 ROTY Andrew Wiggins averaged more than 36 minutes per game in his first season with Minnesota. How many points did he average?

Wiggins played like a number one draft pick right away for the Timberwolves. He averaged 16.9ppg and 4.6 rebounds per game in his scintillating rookie season.


Malcolm Brogdon won ROTY in 2016-17. Where did he play college ball?

Brogdon played four standout years at Virginia. As a freshman, he averaged less than 7 points per game; as a senior, he averaged more than 18.


In 1979-80, Larry Bird won the ROTY award. Where was he selected in the draft?

Bird was highly sought coming out of Indiana State, where he contended for the national title. The Celtics took him with the number six pick.


Pau Gasol won the 2002 Rookie of the Year award. Where is he from?

Gasol is an extraordinary player who grew up in Spain. He played his first year with Memphis but has bounced around from team to team.


How many teams have drafted two consecutive Rookies of the Year?

Four very lucky teams have drafted Rookies of the Year in two consecutive seasons. They are Minnesota, Baltimore (Bullets), Buffalo (Braves) and Portland.


Which team drafted 2007-08 ROTY Kevin Durant?

Seattle fans were screaming for joy at Durant's amazing rookie performance. Then, they all screamed in agony as the team relocated to Oklahoma City.


In 1984-85, which player was Rookie of the Year?

In 84-85, Jordan emerged from North Carolina and stole the ROTY award. He went on to win six NBA titles.


True or false: Was Larry Bird's rookie season his best-ever in terms of statistics?

Bird averaged more than 20ppg in his rookie year, but for the next eight seasons, he kept improving. He eventually averaged nearly 30ppg while shooting nearly 53% from the field.


2006-07 ROTY Brandon Roy played for _____ during his college career.

Roy was a standout guard for the Washington Huskies, where he averaged more than 20ppg during his senior year. He had a short career with Portland before retiring due to injury.


LeBron James was the 2003-04 Rookie of the Year. Where did he play college basketball?

James was such a complete player out of high school that he didn't even play college basketball. He went straight to the pros and took the NBA by storm.


Which team drafted 2009-10 ROTY Tyreke Evans?

The Sacramento Kings took Evans as the fourth pick of the 2009 draft. Then they traded him to the Pelicans ... and now he's back with the Kings.


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