1) Kevin compiled an impressive rookie resumé.
Huerter finished the season eighth in total minutes played (2049), ninth in points (729), 12th in rebounds (245), sixth in assists (211) and seventh in steals (65). Part of the reason that Huerter could put together such lofty totals is that he made huge strides from where he was as a player at the start of the preseason, and he earned head coach Lloyd Pierce’s trust that he could play at the NBA level. By the end of the season, Huerter had started 59 games at the shooting guard spot and produced at a level that merited that role.
2) The Hawks were far better with Kevin on the court.
Individual stats are good, but an even more important quality is making the other basketball plays that contribute to winning, like making the right decisions on defense, taking care of the ball, and spacing the floor.
Kevin Huerter did all of that and more – and the Hawks played better when Huerter had a bigger role. The team posted a 24-35 record in games that Huerter started; in the games where Huerter came off the bench or did not play, the Hawks were 5-18.
3) Kevin, in his own words, on his plan for the summer
“Right now, I don’t think the plan is to play in Vegas. I’ll be going out there, I’ll be out there with the team, but I don’t think I’ll be playing. Other than that, the summer will be about getting stronger and trying to get better. I’ll be here (in Atlanta).”
4) Kevin showed he could take over a game.
Huerter scored a career-high 29 points in a road win over the playoff-bound 76ers in January. He hit a huge three-pointer in the final minute to tie the game before nabbing a steal that helped set John Collins up for the game-winning basket.
Last season, Beal was asked to play a bigger role when John Wall missed 41 games. It wasn’t easy, as he had to change the way he played and become much more of a decision-maker. Still, he embraced the challenge, and helped keep his team in position to make the playoffs. Wall came back at the end of the 2017-18 season, but the Wizards lost to the Raptors in six games in the first round of the postseason.
When Wall went down again in late December this season, the franchise was put on Beal’s shoulders once again. The result put extra pressure on him for a second straight season to carry the load and try to lead the Wizards to success. This time, however, he knew what to expect.
5) The three-point shot has never been more crucial to NBA success than it is right now, and Kevin is really, really good at it.
Huerter made 136 threes on the season, converting them at a 38.5 percent clip. Both marks were good enough to rank fourth among rookies this season.
Huerter was also able to get threes up with volume. He had six games where he made five or more threes. According to Basketball Reference, those six games rank Huerter sixth among all rookies dating back to the 1983-84 season.
6) Kevin made plays efficiently.
Huerter ranked seventh among rookies in assists per game (2.9). All six of the rookies who ranked above him were primary ballhandlers, while Huerter mostly functioned as a secondary ballhander.
Huerter has also made those plays without an abundance of miscues. With 214 assists and 109 turnovers, Huerter narrowly missed finishing with a 2 to 1 assist-to-turnover ratio.
7) Kevin didn’t miss a dunk.
Huerter went 24 for 24 on dunk attempts on the season.
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