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The Detroit Pistons were able to select Purdue Boilermakers shooting guard Jaden Ivey with the 5th overall selection in last year's NBA Draft, but general manager Troy Weaver wasn't finished yet. Memphis center Jalen Duren, originally selected 13th overall by the Charlotte Hornets, would be on his way to Detroit thanks to a trade that the New York Knicks helped to facilitate. Detroit soon had themselves not one but two top young talents taken within Round 1 of the Draft.
Why It Matters: Ivey's rookie numbers stack up against the best
While the Pistons trudged through a dreadful season that saw them win only 17 of 82 games, Ivey proved himself to be a bright spot on the team, especially in the absence of the injured Cade Cunningham.
Ivey would play in 74 games in his rookie year with Detroit, averaging 16.3 points, 5.2 assists, and 3.9 rebounds per game while also shooting 34.3% from beyond the arc. And thanks to his numbers, he's in some pretty good company. In fact, he stacks up against some of the biggest names in the Association during their respective rookie years.
For example, Russell Westbrook averaged 15.3 points, 5.3 assists, and 4.9 rebounds per game as a rookie in 2008-09 with the Oklahoma City Thunder. Damian Lillard averaged 19 points, 6.5 assists, and 3.1 rebounds per game as a rookie with the Portland Trail Blazers, while Ja Morant averaged 17.8 points, 7.3 assists, and 3.9 rebounds as a rookie in 2019-20 with the Memphis Grizzlies.
Wrapping It Up: Jaden Ivey will be critical to Detroit's future success
The Pistons may have missed out on getting the 1st overall selection in this year's upcoming NBA Draft, but with the 5th overall selection, they'll have a chance to draft another talent like Ivey.
For Ivey himself, he'll be relied upon heading into his sophomore year to help the Pistons reverse their fortunes and begin competing for the playoffs.