After a disastrous start to his NBA career marred by offensive inconsistencies and turnover problems, Josh Jackson was able to bring home one award from his rookie season. Following a strong recovery once the clock turned over to 2018, Jackson received NBA Second Team All-Rookie honors on Tuesday.
In 77 appearances, 35 starts, Jackson averaged 13.1 points, 4.6 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1 steal in 25.4 minutes. However, from January 1 and on Jackson turned it up to the tune of 17.2-5.6-2-1.1 being his stat line instead.
Once former head coach Jay Triano was able to reel Jackson in early on following his troublesome start — which included a DNP-CD and an acknowledgement of showing up late to team meetings early on — he began to slow down.
Jackson also openly acknowledged that himself, showing self awareness on his part and willing to commit to perfect his craft even further.
After Devin Booker and T.J. Warren were shut down due to injury, Jackson was able to be the No. 1 option over the final month. It’s a role he will likely not see much outside of these emergency situations, but Jackson proved capable and Phoenix hopes that rapid development pays dividends when October rolls around.
Against Houston, this ragtag group of Suns led by Jackson kept it close and he even hit his first career go-ahead shot with 1.4 seconds left.
Josh Jackson hits his first career go-ahead shot over Clint Capela with 1.4 seconds left. pic.twitter.com/QTkoHKQp7p— Evan Sidery (@esidery) March 31, 2018
Unfortunately, as we all know, Gerald Green dashed Jackson’s hopes of that shot being a game winner.
Not only that but Jackson had his career-best outing versus the Golden State Warriors, which included a 36 point outburst where Jackson was hitting from all three levels consistently.
During the voting process by 100 selected media, Jackson barely edged out Bam Adebayo by one vote (45-44) to secure the final spot.
Below is how both first and second team All-Rookie played out. Ben Simmons and Donovan Mitchell were the only two who were unanimous on all ballots, so their heated debate for Rookie of the Year rages on.
First team: Ben Simmons, Donovan Mitchell, Lauri Markkanen, Jayson Tatum, Kyle Kuzma
Second team: Lonzo Ball, Dennis Smith Jr., John Collins, Josh Jackson, Bogdan Bogdanovic