So much for rookie struggles. Overcoming the league-wide bug that has plagued first-year players in the season’s early going, Andrew Wiggins scored a career-best and new class-high of 17 points (7-12 FGs) in the Minnesota Timberwolves’ impressive road win over the Brooklyn Nets on Wednesday. Watch the 19 year-old show off his breadth of raw offensive skills by hitting step-back jumpers, driving to the rim and hanging for acrobatic finishes, and even knocking down an open trey.
This kid is going to be scary good.
Might this be the game that really gets Wiggins going? Perhaps. He lacks the ceaseless confidence of other star prospects at the moment, and admitted post game that connecting on his first jumper Wednesday night had him feeling good. Maybe Wiggins’ overall performance will serve as a similar springboard to consistent success.
But the more likely outcome is that the Canadian sensation mixes drool-inducing games like this one with those of a far less notable variety. He’s still a teenager just one year removed from high school basketball, after all – the speed, physicality, and nuance of the NBA game always proves a major adjustment for rookies.
Just ask Jabari Parker, the youngster who so many deemed “NBA-ready” coming into the year. The Milwaukee Bucks’ rookie is shooting only 36 percent from the field in 2014-2015, and took 17 shots to get his career-high of 13 points last week.
It simply takes time. Wiggins played his first great professional game last night, and Parker’s will soon follow. But don’t expect that level of play to be the new norm for either player or any of their first-year peers. Rookies play their initial season climbing from lows and falling from highs.
The longer glimpses of effectiveness and even stardom is what we should look for from youngsters, and Wiggins certainly provided those of the latter against Brooklyn. And while there will certainly be more to come, we likely won’t see them consistently, either.
(Video via Dawk Ins)
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