Rookie Impact: Golden State’s Success Hinges on Barnes, Green, and Ezeli

It’s difficult to ask for a rookie to help carry an NBA team in the postseason. Yet instead of just one rookie, Golden State will need the help of three.

The Warriors' rookies played big the other night; now it's time for them to take over (www.nba.com)

The Warriors’ rookies played big the other night; now it’s time for them to take over (www.nba.com)

Harrison Barnes, the 7th overall draft pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, along with Draymond Green (35th overall) and Festus Ezeli (30th overall) will be expected to contribute beyond their years if the Warriors hope to advance past their Conference Semifinal matchup with the well experienced San Antonio Spurs.

Aside from the Zen-like sorcery-type comeback that the Spurs pulled off in Game 1 (where they came back from a double-digit deficit to win 129-127 in double overtime), the rookies seem more than up for the task at hand.

Barnes finished Game 1 with an impressive Continue reading

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Rookie Impact: Barnes Fills Void, Helps Warriors Tie Series

Dubs rookie Harrison Barnes stepped up in David Lee's abscence, but he'll have to keep it going. (cleveland.com)

Dubs rookie Harrison Barnes stepped up in David Lee’s abscence, but he’ll have to keep it going. (cleveland.com)

When Warriors forward David Lee went down with a torn right hip flexor Saturday night in Golden State’s first playoff game of the postseason against the Denver Nuggets, many was unknown about the Dubs immediate future.Would David Lee be able to return? And if not, who would step up to fill the void he left behind?Answers to both of those questions now seem pretty obvious.

Harrison Barnes played a huge role in helping Golden State to Continue reading

Rookie Impact: Bucks’ Henson Not Given His Due

This one is already in the bag.

After last night’s resounding 12-point victory in favor of the champs, this one is in the bag.

Heck, this one was in the bag after Game 1.

Even worse, this series was over before the first round best-of-seven matchup even began.

Maybe it's time to let Milwaukee's young buck John Henson throwdown (jsonline.com)

Maybe it’s time to let Milwaukee’s young buck John Henson throwdown (jsonline.com)

With that in mind, why is Milwaukee continuing to start the struggling veteran Luc Mbah a Moute over the suddenly-hot rookie John Henson?Henson, the 14th overall pick out of the University of North Carolina in the 2012 Draft, has faced his share of trials and tribulations throughout his rookie campaign. Only playing in 63 of the Bucks’ regular-season contests, Henson averaged 6.0 ppg and 4.7 rpg in 13.1 minutes per contest. Per 36 minutes, Henson’s numbers would inflate to 16.5 ppg and 12.9 rpg, along with 1.9 bpg.

Yet, for whatever reason, the Milwaukee brass Continue reading