Former Duke star Zion Williamson started the season late after surgery and subsequent rehab. When he returned, he was spectacular but only played in 24 games and, as good as he was, was never fully himself.
Despite that, his easy dominance had some observers suggesting he might win Rookie of the Year.
As it turned out, that didn’t happen.
Memphis Grizzly Ja Morant got that particular honor Thursday, winning 99 out of 100 first place votes.
Williamson got the other first place vote.
He still didn't come in second though - that honor fell to Kendrick Nunn, who kind of came out of nowhere this season. Pat Riley has always been a good judge of talent to be sure. Nunn wasn’t even drafted (he played at Oakland and had a somewhat checkered college career).
For his part, Morant isn’t forgetting that he didn’t get a voting sweep, saying that “I want to shoot a direct message to [that voter] and thank them for motivating me even more to do more on the floor and be better and do whatever I can to help my team in a basketball game. If anyone knows who that is, let me know.”