With three projected rookies in the 76ers lineup, the odds are in Philadelphia’s favor to win Rookie of the Year, but that’s not how this season’s NBA rookies see it. The popular vote among NBA rookies says Minnesota’s Kris Dunn is the favorite to win the award in 2016-17.
NBA.com conducted a poll asking 38 rookies who they believed would win this season’s Rookie of the Year award. Dunn led the way, receiving 29 percent of the vote. Los Angeles Lakers forward Brandon Ingram was second with 25.8 percent, and Philadelphia 76ers forward Ben Simmons was third with 19.4 percent of the vote.
However, it’s probably important to note that last year, 76ers forward Jahlil Okafor dominated the same poll, receiving 41.9 percent of the vote that he would win Rookie of the Year, and he didn’t. Instead, the award went to Dunn’s new teammate Karl-Anthony Towns.
If Dunn wins the award, though, he would be the third straight Timberwolves player to do so. Andrew Wiggins also won the trophy in 2014-15.
It’s also worth noting that although Dunn led the way in ROY voting among his peers, he finished second in a poll asking the same crowd “Which rookie will have the best career?” Ingram won that vote with 26.7 percent while Dunn was second at 16.7 percent.
Interestingly, Simmons, the reigning No. 1 overall selection, finished tied for fourth in that poll with just 6.7 percent of the vote.
Unlike Ingram and Simmons, Dunn played four years of college basketball at Providence. He won Big East Player of the Year twice and in his senior season, he averaged 16.4 points, 6.2 assists, 5.3 rebounds and 2.5 steals per game.