Trae Young is not the NBA’s Rookie of the Year.
Luka Doncic is.
The league announced its award winners on Monday night. Young, the Hawks starting point guard, was fourth in the league in assists in his first season. Doncic, the Mavericks wing, had higher averages in points and rebounds.
Doncic finished with 496 points with 98 first-place and two second-place votes in the pool of 100 voters. Young finished with 301 points. He received two first-place and 97 second-place votes.
The Suns’ DeAndre Ayton, the No. 1 overall pick last year, was the other finalist. He had 66 points.
The link between Young and Doncic, who were traded for each other on draft night, continues. The Hawks took Doncic with the No. 3 pick and the Mavericks took Young with the No. 5 pick. The Hawks also acquired a first-round pick in the deal, which was used on Cam Reddish at No. 10 in last week’s draft.
“This kid is special,” Hawks principal owner Tony Ressler told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution last week of Young. “This kid passes the ball in a remarkable way. This kid will be a good shooter real soon. This kid hasn’t played in the NBA before, others have professionally. Trae didn’t. We love where we are.”
Young appeared in 81 games this season, sitting just one game for rest. He finished with averages of 19.1 points, 8.1 assists and 3.7 rebounds in 30.9 minutes. Young was fourth overall in assists in the league trailing only Russell Westbrook, Kyle Lowry and Chris Paul. Young shot .418 from the field, including .324 from 3-point range.
Doncic, who played in Europe before being drafted, appeared in 72 games. He finished with averages of 21.2 points, 7.8 rebounds and 6.0 assists in 32.2 minutes. He shot .427 from the field, including .327 from 3-point range.
“Trae does exactly what we hope great NBA players could do, and we are fortunate to have one, which is make everyone on his team better,” Ressler said. “That sounds so easy and, in fact, is so hard.”
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