Was there ever any doubt that Tyrese Maxey would receive this honor? Hardly, but now it’s official. The rookies and sophomores selected for the 2022 NBA Rising Stars event have been announced, and Sixers’ guard Tyrese Maxey has made the cut.
Here’s a list of everyone who was selected:
NBA rookies and second-year players selected for the Rising Stars Game at All-Star Weekend in Cleveland: pic.twitter.com/MT5vcgedY4— Marc Stein (@TheSteinLine) February 2, 2022
As the Sixers pointed out in their press release when announcing the news, Maxey is the 18th player in Sixers history to be selected and the first since Ben Simmons in 2019.
The Rising Stars event will be a bit different this year. There will be four teams made up of seven players, taking part in a three-game tournament where every game will be played to a final target score.
Maxey has been nothing but terrific this season. As his minutes and touches have increased, his production has skyrocketed across the board. After averaging eight points and two assists per game as a rookie, Maxey is putting up 16.8 points, 3.5 rebounds, 4.7 assists, 0.7 steals and 0.6 blocks per game this season. What makes his play in an increased role even more impressive is that he’s actually improved his efficiency. His three-point percentage has soared to 40.1 (up from 30.1 last year), his true shooting percentage is up to 56.2 (53.1 last year), and he’s averaging just 1.3 turnovers. And beyond just the basic numbers, there are clear areas of development that stand out when watching him. For instance, his improved finishing (he’s making 64.5 percent of his shots within three feet, up from 59.1 last season) and the significant growth he’s shown as a pull-up shooter from distance.
While Maxey could have been given more responsibility in the offense — he’s had limited touches next to his fellow starters at times, and should have been staggered from Joel Embiid more to have extra opportunities to lead the offense — he’s done all he can to maximize his impact.
He added yet another statement on Monday night. With Joel Embiid out due to rest, Maxey went off for 33 points, eight assists, one steal and four blocks to help lead the Sixers to a 122-119 win against the Grizzlies.
What a game from Tyrese Maxey against Memphis.— Tom West (@TomWestNBA) February 1, 2022
33 points, 8 assists, 1 steal, 4 blocks.
Lots of impressive drives and finishes, had his pull-up jumper going, and played really active defense. pic.twitter.com/b2qy8yAqkw
Maxey has been absolutely huge for the Sixers this season as they’ve dealt with various injuries, absences due to COVID, and most importantly the ongoing Ben Simmons situation.
The young guard deserves a ton of credit for how quickly he’s developed, and more than earned his Rising Stars nod.