Calling 27-year old Malcolm Delaney a rookie might be a stretch but this is his “rookie” season in the NBA after beginning his professional career in Europe. Delaney has capitalized on his opportunity to play and has grabbed hold of the Hawks’ backup point guard job. The rest of the league is taking notice and Delaney lands at No. 4 on this week’s Rookie Ladder over at NBA.com.
With Wade Baldwin IV suddenly out of the rotation in Memphis, Delaney is No. 1 in the category among rookies guards who are playing and, with Jakob Poeltl of the Toronto Raptors likewise finding few minutes, No. 2 regardless of position behind only fellow rookie and teammate Taurean Prince. Delaney is also first in the class in assists, noteworthy on its own and also six spots higher than Brogdon, although Delaney is a point guard and the Bucks rookie more combo guard.
Philadelphia center Joel Embiid tops the list by a wide margin and is followed by his teammate Dario Saric. Milwaukee combo-guard Malcolm Brogdon checks in at No. 3 and is followed by Delaney.
Delaney is shooting just 37 percent from the field and 24 percent from three-point range but appears to be getting more and more comfortable. He is 2-to-1 assist to turnover ratio and his advanced numbers show how valuable he has been while on the court. Delaney leads the team in net rating among those that see regular minutes. He ranks 13th in the entire league in total plus/minus.