Thursday, April 11, 2013
The NBA's most overlooked rookie
By Joe Kaiser
On Wednesday, Brian Roberts cashed in with a season-high 20 points in New Orleans' loss to Sacramento. For the 27-year-old rookie who starred at Dayton before playing professionally in Israel and Germany over the last four years, that also marked a career high. What's this say about the Hornets' backup point guard?
For one, it's further proof that he belongs in the NBA and is here to stay. But that's nothing new for Roberts, who has proven himself all season long while playing behind Greivis Vasquez, averaging 6.9 points and 2.6 assists in just over 16 minutes a game.
Though Roberts is still not a well-known name, ESPN Insider's David Thorpe recently rated him No. 3 rookie in the league behind only Damian Lillard and Anthony Davis. That, however, factors in the games missed by Andre Drummond, who certainly has a higher upside and would be in the top 3 had he played more games. Here's Thorpe with more on Roberts.
David ThorpeRoberts is a valuable asset off the bench
"The only thing surprising about Roberts' play this season is, well, nothing. As a senior at Dayton, he was considered a first team All-American candidate before some injuries and a lack of talent around him dragged his game a bit south. Still, he has played very well in summer leagues and Europe for years. Who can't use a quick dribbler with a great head on his shoulders and a sweet jumper? Roberts projects to be in the league for a good five-plus seasons and can help a team as a lead or scoring guard."