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Russell Westbrook Finishes 4th in Rookie of the Year Voting

The results for the 2009 T-Mobile NBA Rookie of the Year voting were announced today, and Thunder Rookie Russell Westbrook finished outside the top three. Finishing first was the #1 overall pick in last years draft, Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls, followed by O.J. Mayo of the Grizzlies, and of the New Jersey Nets, Brook Lopez. Derrick Rose seemed to be the consensus Rookie of the Year in the media and with his team in the playoffs, he was the easy choice. The voting wasn't close at all as Rose took home 111 first place votes compared to just five for 2nd place finisher O.J. Mayo, and just two apiece for Brook Lopez and Russell Westbrook. You can see the full voting results inside the full post if you are reading this on the front page.

Despite not getting more votes for Rookie of the Year, Thunder fans should be proud of the performance turned in this season by Westbrook. When you look at his stats compared to those of the R.O.Y. Winner Derrick Rose, they are pretty comparable (See all four players stats inside full post). RW0 was actually better than Rose in a couple of important categories. Westbrook average a half a steal per game more than Rose, and 1 more rebound per game than Rose. The reason those stats are important is because they show that Westbrook had a better year defensively, which one could argue would allow him to grow into a better overall player than Rose. If he can learn how to distribute the ball a bit better, develop a more accurate outside shot, and reduce his turnovers (which were .8 per game worse than Rose), he may have the brighter future as a more complete point guard.

FG 3PT FT Rebounds Misc

G M M A Pct M A Pct M A Pct Off Def Tot Ast TO Stl Blk PF PPG
2008 - Derrick Rose 81 37.0 7.1 14.9 47.5 0.2 0.9 22.2 2.4 3.1 78.8 1.2 2.7 3.9 6.3 2.5 0.8 0.2 1.5 16.8

FG 3PT FT Rebounds Misc

G M M A Pct M A Pct M A Pct Off Def Tot Ast TO Stl Blk PF PPG
2008 - O.J. Mayo 82 38.0 6.9 15.6 43.8 1.8 4.6 38.4 3.0 3.4 87.9 0.7 3.1 3.8 3.2 2.8 1.1 0.2 2.5 18.5

FG 3PT FT Rebounds Misc

G M M A Pct M A Pct M A Pct Off Def Tot Ast TO Stl Blk PF PPG
2008 - Brook Lopez 82 30.5 5.5 10.3 53.1 0.0 0.0 0.0 2.1 2.6 79.3 2.7 5.4 8.1 1.0 1.8 0.5 1.9 3.1 13.0

FG 3PT FT Rebounds Misc

G M M A Pct M A Pct M A Pct Off Def Tot Ast TO Stl Blk PF PPG
2008 - Russell Westbrook 82 32.5 5.3 13.4 39.8 0.4 1.6 27.1 4.3 5.2 81.5 2.2 2.7 4.9 5.3 3.3 1.3 0.2 2.3 15.3


Rookie, Team                                       1st            2nd           3rd           Total

Derrick Rose, Chicago                      111           5              4              574

O.J. Mayo, Memphis                              5             64            29            246

Brook Lopez, New Jersey                     2             28            33            127

Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City    2             13            24            73

Eric Gordon, L.A. Clippers                     -              4             10            22

Kevin Love, Minnesota                           -              2             10            16

Michael Beasley, Miami                         -              2             1             7

Marc Gasol, Memphis                            -              1             1             4

Robin Lopez, Phoenix                            -              1             -              3

Rudy Fernandez, Portland                     -              -              3             3

Mario Chalmers, Miami                          -              -              2             2

Courtney Lee, Orlando                           -              -              2             2

Nicolas Batum, Portland                        -              -              1             1                              




NEW YORK, April 22, 2009 – Derrick Rose of the Chicago Bulls is the recipient of the Eddie Gottlieb Trophy as the 2008-09 T-Mobile NBA Rookie of the Year, the NBA announced today.


Rose received 111 first-place votes (574 points) from a panel of 120 sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada. Memphis’ O.J. Mayo finished second with 246 points and New Jersey’s Brook Lopez finished third with 127 points. Players were awarded five points for each first-place vote, three points for each second-place vote and one point for each third-place vote.


Selected with the first overall pick in the NBA Draft 2008, Rose led first-year players in assists (6.3 apg) and was second among rookies in scoring (16.8 ppg), to go along with 3.9 rebounds in 37.0 minutes. Rose shot .475 from the field and .788 from the free throw line. He started 80 of 81 games (missed one game due to injury on March 24), and finished the season in the top three in several categories all-time among Bulls rookies, including total points (3rd, 1,361), scoring (3rd, 16.8 ppg) and assists (3rd, 6.3 apg).


A three-time T-Mobile Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month selection (Nov., Dec., March), Rose scored in double digits 71 times including 32 games of at least 20 points. Rose represented Chicago at All-Star Saturday Night in Phoenix, becoming the first rookie to win the PlayStation® Skills Challenge with a time of 35.3 seconds. A participant in the 2009 T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam, Rose finished with four points and a team-high seven assists. Rose is the third Bulls rookie to win the award and the first since Elton Brand in 1999-00 (co-winner with Houston’s Steve Francis).


Throughout the 2008-09 season, for every point scored by the T-Mobile Rookie of the Month, T-Mobile USA pledged to donate $20 per point scored during the month the player won the award to better the various youth communities in Phoenix, the Host City of NBA All-Star 2009. T-Mobile will donate a total of $60,340, with $16,220 coming from the 811 points scored by Rose alone during the three months he won T-Mobile Rookie of the Month. The donation is part of the overall T-Mobile Rookie Program and builds on T-Mobile’s strong appeal to the nation’s youth as the official wireless partner of the NBA. Other highlights of T-Mobile’s partnership with the NBA include the T-Mobile Rookie of the Year, T-Mobile Rookie of the Month Awards, and the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam, an All-Star competition between NBA rookies and second-year players. During NBA All-Star 2009, T-Mobile and NBA Cares hosted more than 3,800 local students from five school districts in Phoenix, to sit in the lower bowl of the arena to watch this year’s T-Mobile Rookie Challenge & Youth Jam on Friday, February 13.


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.