Ranking Ja Morant among past NBA Rookie of the Year winners

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DALLAS, TEXAS – MARCH 06: Luka Doncic #77 of the Dallas Mavericks and Ja Morant #12 of the Memphis Grizzlies jump for a loose ball in the second half at American Airlines Center on March 06, 2020 in Dallas, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

Memphis Grizzlies point guard Ja Morant had a fantastic rookie season that stacks up against some of the best in recent memory.

The Memphis Grizzlies couldn’t have realistically asked for more than what they got from Ja Morant’s rookie season in 2019-20.

A rebuilding franchise with a young roster and a first-year head coach had no business coming one game away from a playoff berth in the notoriously tough Western Conference.

But that’s what happened for Memphis, due in large part to their rookie point guard, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, who averaged 17.8 points and 7.3 assists per game and was almost unanimously voted NBA Rookie of the Year.

In a conference that boasts superstar point guards like Stephen Curry, Russell Westbrook, Chris Paul and Damian Lillard, Morant quickly established himself as a problem for opponents who could crack the All-Star glass ceiling sooner than later.

Where does Morant’s rookie season rank in comparison to past Rookie of the Year winners?

We took the last 10 R.O.Y. honorees — from Blake Griffin in 2011 to Ja Morant in 2020 — and ranked their first-year performances.

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