Unfortunately, the NBA regular season isn't like Super Mario Brothers. Which is kind of a shame; because I think some frog suits would really spice things up in the Eastern Conference. The Sixers can't warp ahead to the NBA Draft, regardless of how many draft picks and warp whistles Sam Hinkie is hoarding.
I'm sorry, but Andrew Wiggins is in another castle.
We gotta play this one out, fellas. No simulating here. But there is some reason for excitement. The Sixers are handing the keys to a rookie point guard, with no veterany veteran within arm's length. Just to be safe, Josh Harris reportedly made a few calls and got the border to Storrs, CT, closed. We never know what Kevin Ollie is doing back there. Can't take any chances. So here are the keys to the Ford Focus, MCW. Take care of her. Curfew is at eleven.
Michael Carter-Williams is walking into a situation with little-to-no expectations. The only expectations this team have is that they're expected to play eighty-two games. This is the perfect scenario for MCW. He's going to play. He's going to play a lot. And there is no Andre Miller hovering over his shoulder.
Jrue Holiday, the last Sixers rookie point guard to play meaningful minutes, barely sniffed the court the opening month. He took a backseat to de facto point guard, Lou Williams, who made his first million before he ever passed. But how successful are rookie point guards? Outside of the Derrick Roses and Kyrie Irvings and Chris Pauls of the league - all world talents who probably could've been rotational players while still in braces - there isn't much of a precedent for Carter-Williams' situation. Point guards picked in the back-end of the lottery, or later in the first round, don't start immediately. At least not often anyway.
The below is a list of rookie point guards who started, and played significant minutes since 2005.
|Player||Rookie Year Age||Draft Pick||Games Started||Minutes/per||Points/per||Assists/per||Turnovers/per||TS%||WS/48||PER|
So what, if anything, can we take from this? Outside of Jrue Holiday, who was probably included more for his adorability than anything else, Carter-Williams is the lowest draft pick on this list. I just didn't find any point guard taken outside the lottery who played big minutes as a rookie (since '05). And if I did gloss over one, The Real Housewives of New Jersey is to blame - season finale, et al.
There's obviously an enormous risk with turning your franchise over to someone drafted outside the top-10. And as you can see, MCW is 21, which makes him like the third oldest player on the Sixers. But 21 is the new 18, so here's to a productive twelve year career with the Sixers, Michael.
So what do we think? What are we expecting from Michael Carter-Williams in Year 1, grading on the *patent-pending* Pepe Sanchez to Dana Barros Sixers Point Guard Scale?
I'm at like a Johnny Dawkins, coming off a season-ending injury right now.
But I can be swayed in the comments below.