Despite missing nearly one-third of his rookie season with the Wizards, Bradley Beal performed well enough to be selected to the NBA All-Rookie First Team today.
Beal, the third overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, was identified earlyby the Wizards as a running mate for former top pick John Wall. The duo immediately became the centerpiece of the crestfallen franchise and potentially one of the most exciting back courts in the league. However, offseason knee surgery for Wall left Beal without proper reinforcements through the first several months of the season.
To Beal's credit, he managed several respectable performances despite the team's overall poor efforts. Beal was named Rookie of the Month in December after posting over 13 points per game during that time period.
It is no mystery that Beal's success (not to mention the return of a healthy John Wall) was in direct correlation to the improved play of the team as a whole. Beal collected his second consecutive Rookie of the Month award for January, posting five games of 20 points or more (the most of any month last season). After a putrid 4-28 start to the season, Wall and Beal led the Wizards to a 24-18 record before Beal's season ending leg injury on April 3.
Portland Trail Blazers guard Damian Lillard, the 2012-13 Kia NBA Rookie of the Year, was a unanimous First Team selection with 29 first team votes and 58 points. Tied for the second-most votes along with Beal was New Orleans Hornets' Anthony Davis who also totaled 57 points each, including 28 first team votes.
Dion Waiters of the Cleveland Cavaliers (50 points, 21 First Team) and Harrison Barnes of the Golden State Warriors (47 points, 18 First Team) were also on the first team.