Considering that Deandre Ayton is having a historic rookie season, it’s kind of weird that he doesn’t get the love that Luka Doncic gets.
Ayton ain’t mad though – he’s enamoured by Doncic’s scoring ability, 3-point shooting and smooth play just like the rest of the NBA.
“I watch his games all the time. He’s a beast,” Ayton said of Doncic. “I’m like, ‘Aw what the heck, there is no way Doncic is a rookie.’ That’s what I say sometimes when I watch him play.”
Sure, Luka’s having a remarkable season, but Ayton – the first overall pick in the 2018 NBA draft – has been no slouch himself.
Ayton leads all rookies in rebounds per game (10.7) and field goal percentage (60.6) and averages 16.7 points on top of that.
If he can keep those numbers up, the Bahamian native would become the first rookie in NBA history to average 16-10 on 60 percent shooting.
So why doesn’t Ayton get the attention he deserves?
“I’ve always been under the radar,” Ayton told The Undefeated’s Marc Spears. “Everybody knows what type of player I am. They just don’t want to give me the credit, I guess.”
The Bahamian big man ain’t worried – he thrives off staying quiet and working hard.
“I had to work very hard to deserve everything I have now. I don’t see what the issue is. I just got to keep working.”
And more important than media adoration, Ayton just wants to help his team start winning. The Suns are currently the worst team in the Western Conference, with a terrible 10-32 record.
“I don’t really care about any type of attention I’m not getting,” Ayton said. “I just want to win. When you win, that’s how you get your attention. With team success comes individual accolades.”
Ayton will be able to knock off two birds with one stone – grab attention and a win – when the Suns take on Luka Doncic’s Mavericks in Dallas on Wednesday.
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