Kyle Kuzma will learn to be better in assists with time
Regardless of how much we’d all love to just sit back and root for Kyle Kuzma to take over, the reality is that the one stat that he hasn’t thrived in just yet is his assists. Currently, Kuzma averages just 1.4 assists per game while Simmons has a blistering eight per contest.
What we have to account for here, even as staggering as those numbers might seem, is the fact that we’re not even a quarter of the way through the season. Joel Embiid might have been up for rookie of the year if he hadn’t been injured, but his dominance dropped short of a full season and as a result, Malcolm Brogdon got the award.
The same can happen this season, and like Brogdon, Kuzma can take it from the front-runner from Philadelphia. What this hinges on is Kuzma being able to continue the chemistry that he had with Lonzo Ball in summer league.
One of the things that was bragged about with regards to Ball’s skill set is the assertion that he can make everyone better. If he can have that impact on Kuzma, there’s no doubt that the former Ute can demonstrate that he’s the best overall rookie in the league this season.
Also, it would take Simmons continuing at a historic pace to keep the numbers that he’s put up through this part of the season. Which, if he pulls that off, that just speaks to how great of a pick he really was for the 76ers.
It still doesn’t take away from what Kuzma brings to the table, but it would take an absolute monster — and completely healthy — season to prevent Kuzma from taking over the race.