The 2021 first overall draft pick, Cade Cunningham, proves himself as an elite player in the league. At the start of the season Cunningham was struggling to find his groove. But the last few weeks he has shined and continues to get better every game. Here are some of the positives that Cunningham has shown throughout this season.
Unselfish with the basketball
There are multiple positives from Cunningham this past season. First, he is an unselfish player. His unselfishness as a player at a young age shows that he is a team player. He is always finding ways to get his teammates involved on the floor. Cunningham ranks second in assists among rookies averaging 5.3 assists per game.
Pistons guard Corey Joseph praised Cunningham for being a team player. Joseph stated, “He’s unselfish and wants to be a team player. His IQ is incredibly high for a rookie,” via Rob Beard/Detroit News.
Ability to score the basketball
Another part of Cunningham’s game that is positive is his shooting ability. Coming out of college Cunningham was praised for scoring the basketball. In the NBA he is proving to be an elite scorer. To start the season Cunningham was struggling to score the ball. But as the season progressed, Cade continued to prove himself as one of the best scorers in the rookie class.
The Pistons needed an elite scorer alongside Saddiq Bey. Cunningham is providing that extra juice as a score that the Pistons needed. Cunningham has been scoring an average of 15.4 points per game and ranks second among rookies.
The defensive side of the floor
Not only can Cunningham play on the defensive side of the ball. His hustle on both sides of the floor shows what kind of impact he makes as a player. Cunningham ranks second with 1.3 steals per game among rookies and 6th in rebounds. He is averaging 5.5 rebounds per game as well.
Cunningham continues to strive for greatness.
Each week Cade continues to impress the city of Detroit and the entire NBA. Week by week, veteran players and coaches continue to praise Cunningham on a high level. Golden State Warriors’ forward Andrew Wiggins made a statement on Cunningham’s future. Wiggins stated, “He’s a really good player. He’s a guy who came in ready and can do it all. He can score the ball, play-make and defend. Sky is the limit for him,” via Jason Dumas/Bleacher Report.
While Cunningham’s goal is ultimately to win Rookie of the Year, it’s not all about trophies for him; it’s all about just playing the game of basketball for him.
Cunningham stated, “It’s definitely a goal of mine. I feel like I am the best rookie. So winning that award would validate that to me and the world, but at the end of the day when I go and play a basketball game, I’m not thinking of Rookie of the Year trophies or anything like that. But it would be great to have when the time comes,” per Jason Dumas Bleacher Report.
The Detroit Piston’s next game is against the Utah Jazz on January 21st at 9 p.m.