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2003-2004 Rookie of the Year...

  • LeBron James

    Votes: 5 50.0%
  • Carmelo Anthony

    Votes: 5 50.0%

  • Total voters
1 - 16 of 16 Posts

6,724 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
So now that the regular season is almost over, who's your Rookie of the Year pick?

It's going to be between Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James. Anthony got his Denver Nuggets team to the playoffs in the tough Western Conference, while James and his Cleveland Cavs came up short in the weak Eastern Conference and will be watching the playoffs on TV.

LeBron James 2003-2004 stats:

PPG 21.0
RPG 5.5
APG 5.9
SPG 1.63
BPG .74
FG% .416
FT% .754
3P% .294
MPG 39.6

Carmelo Anthony 2003-2004 stats:

PPG 21.1
RPG 6.1
APG 2.8
SPG 1.20
BPG .51
FG% .427
FT% .777
3P% .321
MPG 36.7

13,202 Posts
heres what i can see

Melo got his team to the playoffs in a much harder division
Melo scored more points
Melo rebounded more
Melo shot better from close and 3pt range
Melo took free throws better

oh yeah and he did it all with less minutes.....A NO BRAINER!

expect to see LBJ with the trophy though :rolleyes:

1,106 Posts
This is really really tough one. :stress:

Is there any chance that both can receive the rookie award?

Like Jason Kidd & Grant Hill in 1994 (maybe 1993, I don't know the year exactly):confused:

Anyway, between those two, I'll pick LeBron.

13,202 Posts
Handoyo said:
I'll pick LeBron. He almost double Cavs' win total from last season.
check the nugs record....its far superior...went from 17 wins to 43

where as the cavs went from 17 to 35.....

so thats 8 games better

Mourinho & Cassano!!
45,797 Posts
According to the Bloomberg, Lebron has won. But I wouldn't belive it until I see it. I think Carmelo should share it for his performance and the fact that he got his team to the playoffs with clutch performances down teh stretch.

13,202 Posts

it was mentioned on ESPN how hill and kidd shared it and how in a fwe years back 3 guys shared it

and i think i heard them say they expect it to be shared.

but if lebron wins then you know its all for the image...

10,868 Posts
there is really no wrong pick, it would be justice if both were to get it but i dont need a rookie of the year award to tell me otherwise, Lebron deserves it just as much as Melo anyway, no one has had more pressure on him in there rookie season than him. and he exceeded everyones expectations, as did Carmelo....both are basically top 10 already.

XT Post Number King
111,120 Posts
Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Associated Press
CLEVELAND -- More than 45 minutes late to a news conference, LeBron James was one teen who didn't need an excuse.

He's exhausted.
LeBron James is all smiles after becoming the youngest Rookie of the Year.

"They had to drag me out bed to put this suit on," James said Tuesday, when he won the NBA Rookie of the Year award. "I didn't want to get out. I thought I was going to practice when they woke me up this morning."

Hey, saving the Cleveland Cavaliers is hard work, and the 19-year-old James put the final touch on a remarkable season by becoming the rookie award's youngest recipient.

"I knew I would make an impact this year," said James, who easily beat Denver's Carmelo Anthony, also 19. "And I guess I did."

The 6-foot-8 guard made the jump from preps to pros look easy, somehow living up to the unprecedented hype. The No. 1 overall draft pick did more than just post jaw-dropping statistics night after night: He transformed Gund Arena into a hot spot, and he gave Cleveland fans reason to hope.

"He proved to all of us that he is up for a challenge. He exceeded all of our expectations and just kept raising the bar," Cavaliers owner Gordon Gund said.

James received 508 points, including 78 of a possible 118 first-place votes, to become the first Cleveland rookie honored.

Anthony, who left Syracuse after leading it to an NCAA championship as a freshman, finished with 430 points, including the other 40 first-place votes.

"People are going to think what they want to think," Anthony said. "I don't really know what else I could have done."

Dwyane Wade of the Miami Heat was third with 117 points in balloting by sports writers and broadcasters. Players received 5 points for a first-place vote, 3 for second and 1 for third.

"I thought it could go either way," said James, who praised Anthony for having a phenomenal season. "I thought it could be a split decision."

In any other year, Anthony probably would have won the award for statistics similar to James' and helping the Nuggets go from 17 victories to the playoffs.

But this season belonged to James, from his 25-point, nine-rebound, six-assist NBA debut at Sacramento through his resounding windmill dunk to close his season at Madison Square Garden.

James followed Amare Stoudemire of the Phoenix Suns as the second straight rookie honored after turning pro directly from high school.

But that's where the similarities end.

No player entered the league to as much fanfare as James. And the Akron native delivered on the court, while his wine-and-gold No. 23 jersey led NBA sales and his image was marketed from coast to coast.

James averaged 20.9 points, 5.5 rebounds and 5.9 assists, joining Oscar Robertson and Michael Jordan as the only NBA rookies to average at least 20-5-5.

"He just has it. It's all his attitude," Cavaliers coach Paul Silas said. "He has a knack for doing and saying the right thing and not in an antagonistic way. That's just not in him. He's humble, and he's about winning more than anything."

Like any rookie, James had his share of struggles while adjusting to the pros. He learned to accept the punishment before dishing out some of his own.

On March 27, he scored 41 points against New Jersey to become the youngest player in league history to break 40. He scored more than 30 points 13 times, and made countless moves that defied description.

"They try to take away your manhood in this league, and they couldn't get mine," said James, who was to receive his trophy Tuesday night at the NBA store in New York. "I could have averaged around 25 points if I could have gotten a lot of calls."

Hall of Famer Julius Erving, who helped present the trophy, believes this is the first of many big accomplishments for James in the NBA.

"I think nothing but extraordinary things about this extraordinary young man," Erving said. "He silenced the critics early and often. This rookie of the year selection is his first step to going to the Basketball Hall of Fame."

A year after going 17-65, the Cavs went 35-47 and finished ninth in the Eastern Conference, one spot out of the playoffs. James also helped home attendance rise from 11,497 to 18,288 _ the highest increase ever for a team that didn't move into a new building.

Plenty of those new fans came to see James, who actually considers football his first love.

He joked Tuesday that he just might have made the right choice by dropping football for good a few years back. Especially now that he's seen his friend, Maurice Clarett, go to court in an effort to enter the NFL early.

"I could have made it to the NFL," James said. "But I probably would have come in with Maurice and been sent back to college."

XT Post Number King
111,120 Posts
Tuesday, April 20, 2004

By Marc Stein

The outrage is mere hours away. LeBron James is going to be handed the Rookie of the Year trophy Tuesday night, after which the anti-LeBron venom will undoubtedly be boiling again.

Thing is, I understand completely.

Really. Everyone in the Carmelo Camp, I think I know how you feel.

I know because I had the same aversion to the 24-7-365 worship of Michael Jordan that many of you harbor toward LeBron now. I had it in high school. Had it in college. Felt smothered by it from the moment I was blessed to start covering this league halfway through the 1993-94 season. I didn't understand why everything had to be about Mike, just as Carmelo Anthony's legions of fans complain that their guy is unfairly overshadowed by the unending attention showered on LeBron.

Some in the audience might recall a column I wrote for ESPN.com in September 2001. It was my plea to MJ to stay retired, because I found the notion of a comeback with the Wizards -- which was going to overshadow anything else happening in the league for months -- so utterly boring. Annoying, even. I simply couldn't understand why the first Jordan comeback, after which he won three more NBA titles, wasn't enough for people. I was perfectly content to watch everyone else who MJ left behind in 1998.

Until this month, no column in my three years writing for this website generated more e-mail vitriol from the people than that MJ view. That changed when I offered two explanations in the past couple weeks to break down why I was voting for LeBron over Carmelo for Rookie of the Year. Those explanations generated as much 'Melo passion and LeBron-bashing as my Inbox withstood back in '01, when it was flooded by streams of MJ-backing. Only this time I didn't see it coming. I didn't expect LeBron vs. Carmelo to be the hot-button issue on the same level with All Things Mike.

So ...

It is not without sympathy to the Carmelo Camp -- and Kiki Vandeweghe, one of the general managers I most respect -- that I bestowed my ROY vote on LBJ. But, again, the rules say you can only vote for one guy, and I stand by what I said in the last two columns: Good as 'Melo's first season was, LeBron was an irresistible choice. I covered one of Kevin Garnett's first pro games, and I remember how Titan legend Cedric Ceballos dunked on KG and mouthed "Not ready, not ready" to the courtside fans after punking the kid out of high school. I was a Laker beat writer for Kobe Bryant's rookie season and saw the degree of difficulty of the preps-to-pros jump on a daily basis. 'Melo, true, is not much older than LeBron, but there has never been a high schooler who has made the jump the way James did. Compare his rookie-year numbers to KG, Kobe, Tracy McGrady, you name it. Even without the playoff berth that Cleveland missed by one game, James had a historic season.

Some of the venom pitched our way so far has been rather humorous. I love getting hit with the East Coast Bias accusations, even though I've lived in a Western Conference city for all but 13 months of my nearly 11 seasons covering the NBA. Even better are the accusations that I'm being paid by Nike or Coca-Cola to stump for LBJ. Anyone who knows me well will tell you that the money I've spent on glass bottles of Coke alone has probably generated more revenue for that company than James' work as a pitchman. Coke should be paying me, but because I'm their Consumer of the Year. Every year.

Sorry to disappoint, but I voted for LeBron simply because he was the right choice. The most popular protest we've received is the one that contends that LeBron's ability to live up to the hype has nothing to do with what actually happens on the court. Excuse me? The never-before-seen expectations placed on LeBron create the kind of pressure that can ruin a guy's game. LeBron faced an ungodly amount of nightly scrutiny and pressure to avoid failure. You don't think that could have affected his on-court performance? The fact that it didn't definitely does have to factor into the ROY voting.

Kareem Rush. You know we like the lefties, but anyone would have to like Rush's fourth quarter in Game 2 of the Houston series. Rush scored all 10 of his points in the final period, missing only one of his five shots and adding two more 3-pointers to the two triples he hit in the fourth quarter of Game 1. Maybe that court time Rush got during the regular season because of all the Lakers' injuries did pay off.

The Kings are really in trouble if they're putting their playoff hopes in the hands of Anthony Peeler. I've seen him bury the Wolves for years. He might go 4-for-4 in one game, but he'll kill them in the next two or three games. Trust me. It never fails.
Lenny Ender
Minneapolis, Minn.
STEIN: Sorry, Lenny. Have to defend AP on this one, and it has nothing to do with his leftiness. He led the league in 3-point shooting this season (at 48.2 percent) and has evolved into a quality defender over the years. The Kings were lucky to get him late in the summer for basically nothing, because now they have no choice but to rely on him. As stated here Monday: Doug Christie and Peeler have to bring it every night, not just once, if Sacramento is to survive the loss of Bobby Jackson.

"We average 96.8 points per game. That's like 97."
¡X Memphis coach Hubie Brown, in his own inimitable style, attempting to say that he expects more offense from the Grizzlies than their 72 points per game against the Spurs, no matter how good San Antonio's defense is. A close second comes from Charles Barkley, who's apparently not a regular reader here: "People that use computers, they stupid."

That's the combined coaching record of Phil Jackson and Jeff Van Gundy in the first round of the playoffs. Of course, Jackson is now halfway to 14-0 with the Lakers holding a 2-0 lead over Houston, which means Van Gundy is halfway to falling from 5-1 to 5-2.

That's how many consecutive playoff games Shaquille O'Neal played before being held below 10 points in one. It's the second-longest such streak in league history, and four of the top five on the list have Laker ties: Karl Malone is No. 1 at 147, followed by Shaq, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (109), Julius Erving (98) and Wilt Chamberlain (84). Before managing just seven points in Game 2 against the Rockets, O'Neal also had a streak of 19 consecutive playoff games with at least 20 points and 10 rebounds.
Anthony was undeniably special, especially at the end of the regular season when he helped shove the Nuggets into the playoffs for the first time since 1995. 'Melo, though, mostly had to worry about himself this season, because Vandeweghe put a nice (and underrated) mix of pressure-deflectors around him. And last season's Nuggets, don't forget, were not a 17-win team like the Cavs, even though the teams had the same win total. Denver might have been the most celebrated 17-win team of all time, having won admirers all over the league for playing hard and playing resolute defense. 'Melo stepped into a positive atmosphere.

In Cleveland, LeBron had to overcome a sickly, losing culture before the Cavs could even think about making a playoff push. He had to do more leading than a kid out of high school should. Failing to secure the No. 8 spot in the East is surely the one major strike against his campaign, but there is fresh numerical support for his case as well: If you want to talk about statistics, please note that James averaged more Birdies than Anthony, 16.96 to 14.21.

Birdies, for the uninitiated, are the end product of a formula Larry Bird devised long ago to quantify a player's contribution to overall team success. Bird likes to add a player's points, rebounds, assists, steals and blocked shots ... and then subtract his missed shots, missed free throws, personal fouls and turnovers ... and then divide the total by the number of games played. Using that formula, James' Bird rating approached the 18.31 registered by Indiana's Jermaine O'Neal, who's widely considered the MVP of the East.

"All anyone talks about with this guy is how much talent he has -- what you don't see is how much work LeBron puts in," said Cavaliers assistant Bob Donewald, who James likes to call "my assistant head coach" and a member of Paul Silas' staff in New Orleans before Cleveland.

"From Minute 1, all he has done is work. He's one of the most coachable kids I've ever seen. Paul gives him something to work on and LeBron will just turn to me and say, 'Let's get it done.' It started back in July when Paul told him he had too much movement in his shot. (James) wanted to watch tape after tape after tape until he corrected it. We won't go three games now without sitting down and breaking down film of (something) he wants to improve. His jumper, his ball-handling, his low-post game -- everything."

OK, OK, OK. We hear you. We've broken down the 'Bron-over-'Melo voting process three times -- twice more than originally planned -- and it's just whipping some of you into a frenzy all over again. So this is really it.

Besides, I wouldn't be surprised if LeBron says something at his press conference about how he'd gladly hand the trophy over to Anthony if it meant the Cavs could be playing a playoff game Tuesday night. It's also time to stress that both of these 19-year-olds should be considered for a spot on the Olympic squad if roster slots keep opening up as expected. No, they're not veterans yet, so neither one has a seniority in. Yet both deserve immense credit for what they've added to the league.

One thing we can all agree on: These two have restored some faith in American hoops, with the sting of Indianapolis 2002 still fresh. Globalization might be the rage in David Stern's office, but one of the most reassuring developments of the season has to be knowing that this country can still churn out two teenagers so good that there's 24-7-365 arguing about who's better.


Marc Stein is the senior NBA writer for ESPN.com. To e-mail him, click here. Also, click here to send a question for possible use on ESPNEWS.

13,202 Posts
stein is normally clever and i read his colums but this is pure BS

one man got to playoffs in the better conf, the other team didnt even have a winning season, or make playoffs in the east... i mean common BOSTON made it...despite AINGE sabotagin the club....ridiculus....

14,769 Posts
Melo !

off topic , 6'11 Howard..a high school player , he looks like a great talent. Soft hands and great footwork. He is going to enter the draf.:star:
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