The NBA announced the members of it’s All-Rookie first and second teams. The list was unsurprisingly headlined by Rookie of the Year award winner Ja Morant and young star Zion Williamson.
Williamson only played in 24 games but still made the team due to how impressive he was in those games. Similarly, Joel Embiid was named to the very same team in 2017 after only playing 31 games.
What’s disappointing for the Sixers organization is that their stud rookie Matisse Thybulle was nowhere to be found on either team. The 23-year-old played some of the most impressive defense seen by a rookie in quite some time.
The voters for the All-Rookie teams showed the Sixers rookie some love but not enough to place him on either team. Thybulle received 6 first-place votes and 43 second-place votes and still fell just short.
Was Matisse Thybulle Snubbed?
On the surface, it seems that Thybulle was snubbed and there is some case to be made.
Thybulle ranked first (by far) in steals among rookies and finished fourth in blocks. In a shortened season, Thybulle proved that he will soon be one of the premier perimeter defenders in the entire NBA but the depth of draft class was just too much for him to overcome.
While it’s a rough draw for Thybulle, it was a quality year for rookies. The Power Forward position especially seemed to be a position of strength in this draft. Zion Williamson, Brandon Clarke, Eric Paschall, P.J. Washington, Rui Hachimura all seem to be on track for stardom.
Between those names, Miami Heat darlings Kendrick Nunn and Tyler Herro, Raptors surprise rookie Terrance Davis, and Coby White (who was incredible in the final two months), there just weren’t enough spots.
Next season will be an exciting one for the young defensive mastermind.
Matisse Thybulle will have plenty of opportunities for accolades in the future so while this is disappointing in the present, the future is certainly bright.
Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire