Perhaps many would disagree with the headline. After his 55 point performance against the Warriors, Brandon Jennings had some signing, sealing, and delivering their ballots for Rookie of the Year. Combine his ridiculous 25.3 ppg and 5.5 apg – which apparently is Michael Jordan / Oscar Robertson territory for rookies – with Milwaukee’s 8-3 record, and Jennings does, in fact, look like the easy favorite. However, we can’t reasonably expect Jennings to keep up the pace he’s started off on. At the time of writing, he’s just 6-21 for 12 points against the Spurs, in what, barring a miracle, will be Milwaukee’s fourth loss.
Lost in all this, though, is the other candidate. While Jennings grabs all the headlines, Tyreke Evans is putting his own team on his back. His averages of 18 pts and 5 ast obviously are inferior to Jennings, but keep in mind Evans scored single digits in two of his first four games, which given the smaller amount of games played in the early going, are sure to go up. That was with Kevin Martin in the lineup though. Once Martin opted for surgery that would keep him out of action for two months, Evans realized the Kings’ were HIS team. He’s responded with SEVEN consecutive 20+ point games, including a high of 32 against the Jazz en route to a big road victory in Salt Lake. While Jennings has hit the ground running, Evans took a few games to find his footing, but has clearly established himself as the second candidate for the award. I’m not saying he’ll win it, but he’ll be right in the mix when all’s said and done.