In NBA player rankings, ESPN lists Jalen Green below other top 2021 rookies

·2 min read

Jalen Green is Houston’s only representative on ESPN’s NBA player rankings list for the 2022-23 season, but the young Rockets guard came in below many of his second-year peers.

For the exercise, ESPN’s NBArank panel was composed of over 200 reporters, editors, producers, and analysts. Each person was asked to rank players based on their predicted contributions — quality and quantity — for the 2022-23 season only.

Green came in at No. 62 on the list, well below the other top-four picks from the first round of Green’s 2021 draft class. Detroit’s Cade Cunningham, Cleveland’s Evan Mobley, and Toronto’s Scottie Barnes came in at No. 35, No. 36, and No. 39, respectively. All were members of the NBA’s All-Rookie First Team for the 2021-22 season.

When polling actual NBA executives, as opposed to media members, Green finished tied with Cunningham last week in a ranking of players to build around who are under 25 years old.

Green did take slightly longer to reach his peak form as a rookie than the other three, which explains why they had superior first-team vote totals. But the ESPN exercise is about projecting for the coming season, rather than grading the previous one. Thus, it suggests that some voters either didn’t notice Green’s historic rookie scoring binge late in the season or are perhaps skeptical as to the sample size.

With training camp for Green and the Rockets starting next Tuesday, Sept. 27, these types of rankings can perhaps be used as motivational fuel for the 20-year-old as he enters his second NBA season.


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Story originally appeared on Rockets Wire