Rubio second to Cleveland's Irving in NBA rookie balloting

  • Blog Post by: Jerry Zgoda
  • May 15, 2012 - 11:40 AM

Timberwolves point guard Ricky Rubio finished a distant second to Cleveland's Kyrie Irving in the NBA's Rookie of the Year balloting, announced by the league today.

Irving received 117 of 120 total first-place votes for a season when he ranked first among rookies in scoring (18.5 ppg), field-goal percentage (.469), free-throw percentage (.872) and second in assists (5.4 to Rubio's 8.7) and three-point percentage (.399).

Rubio received 49 second-place and 23 third-place votes and finished with 170 points, far behind Irving's 592, despite not playing the season's final six weeks because of those torn knee ligaments.

Denver's Kenneth Faried finished third, San Antonio's Kawhi Leonard was fourth and New York's Iman Shumpert was fifth.

Faried, Leonard and Shumpert each received one of the other three first-place votes that Irving didn't get.

Sacramento's Isaiah Thomas, the last player taken in last summer's draft, finished seventh when you could have made a case that he was the second best rookie all season behind Irving.

Irving is the Cavaliers' first winner since some guy named LeBron won the award in 2004.

Today was the last of the league's major individual award winners announced in a season when James again won MVP, San Antonio's Gregg Popovich was named Coach of the Year, Oklahoma City's James Harden was Sixth Man, Orlando's Ryan Anderson was Most Improved and New York's Tyson Chandler was named Defensive Player of the Year.

Irving, the No. 1 pick in last summer's draft, gets the Eddie Gottlieb Trophy is named in honor of Eddie Gottlieb, one of the NBA’s founders who coached the Philadelphia Warriors to the NBA championship in 1946-47.

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