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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Sunday / December 17.
  • Simmons, Ball, Tatum, Jackson, Fox among NBA rookies making immediate impact

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    This season’s NBA rookie class has made an immediate impact. Here is a look at some of the players who are turning heads, via an NBA release.

    http://pr.nba.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/46/2016/10/ball.jpg Ben Simmons, 76ers: The top pick in the 2016 NBA Draft (16.4 ppg, 10.0 rpg, 7.4 apg) is the third player in NBA history to do the following: 1.) record a triple-double within his first four games; and 2.) register at least 80 points, 50 rebounds and 30 assists in his first five games.

    http://pr.nba.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/46/2016/10/ball.jpg Lonzo Ball and Kyle Kuzma, Lakers: Ball owns the highest-scoring game by a rookie this season (29 points at Phoenix on Oct. 20) and is tied for fourth in the NBA in assists with 9.0 per game. Kuzma, the 27th pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, is averaging 14.5 points on 53.5 percent shooting from the field.

    http://pr.nba.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/46/2016/10/ball.jpg Jayson Tatum, Celtics: A starter since opening night, Tatum is averaging 14.8 points and 7.8 rebounds in four games.

    http://pr.nba.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/46/2016/10/ball.jpg Josh Jackson and Mike James, Suns: Jackson and James each scored 10 or more points in their first four games, joining Walter Davis and Alvan Adams as the only players in team history to accomplish the feat. James, an undrafted 27-year-old rookie, is the first player from Lamar University to play in the NBA since the 1997-98 season.

    http://pr.nba.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/46/2016/10/ball.jpg De’Aaron Fox, Kings: The 19-year-old point guard (15.0 ppg, 5.0 apg, 5.0 rpg) is the first player that age or younger to have a 10-assist game with the Kings.

    http://pr.nba.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/46/2016/10/ball.jpg Lauri Markkanen, Bulls: The Finnish forward (BWB Europe 2014; BWB Global 2015) is the first player in NBA history to make 10 three-pointers in his first three games. He is averaging 16.3 points and 9.3 rebounds.

    http://pr.nba.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/46/2016/10/ball.jpg Dennis Smith Jr., Mavericks: The 6-3 guard is the first Mavericks player to score at least 45 points in his first three games since Jamal Mashburn in 1993.

    http://pr.nba.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/46/2016/10/ball.jpg John Collins, Hawks: Collins is averaging 11.8 points and 7.8 rebounds in 19.3 minutes in four games. He is the first Atlanta player to notch back-to-back double-doubles in a reserve role since Adam Keefe in March 1993.

    http://pr.nba.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/46/2016/10/ball.jpg Dillon Brooks, Grizzlies: The 45th pick in the 2017 NBA Draft, Brooks’ 19-point performance in Memphis’ opener was the highest-scoring debut for a Grizzlies player since Rudy Gay in 2006 (21 points).

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    Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.