Ranking the best rookie seasons in Utah Jazz history #10-6.

10.  Danny Schayes: Schayes was selected with the 13th pick of the first round in the 1981 draft.  Schayes played 82 games (20 starts) in 1981-82 and averaged 7.9 points, 5.2 rebounds, 1.8 assists and nearly a block a contest.  One of his best games as a rookie came in an April win over the San Diego Clippers when Schayes totaled 17 points, 12 rebounds and three blocked shots.

9.  John Stockton: Stockton was selected with the  16th pick of the first round in the 1984 draft.  He played in all 82 games (five starts) in 1984-85 and played a little more than 18 minutes a contest as a backup to Rickey Green.  Even though his minutes were limited, Stockton showed that he could really distribute the ball.  He finished second on the team with 5.1 assists a game while also averaging 5.6 points, 1.3 rebounds and 1.3 steals.  One of his best games of that season came in a March win over the Chicago Bulls when Stockton registered 14 points and 12 assists.

8.  Mark Eaton: Eaton was selected with the third pick in the fourth round (72nd overall) in the 1982 draft.  Eaton played in 81 games (32 starts) in the 1982-83 season and was a presence on the defensive end of the floor from day one.  Even though he only played about 19 minutes a night, Eaton finished third in the league with 3.4 blocks a game.  Eaton also averaged 4.3 points, 5.7 rebounds and 1.4 assists as a rookie.  One of his most impressive games that season came in a February loss to the Phoenix Suns when he recorded 12 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists.

7.  Mitchell “J.J.” Anderson: Anderson was selected with the 13th pick of the second round (36th overall) by the Philadelphia 76ers in the 1982 draft.  He appeared in 13 games for Philadelphia before being waived.  The Jazz picked up Anderson three days later and he would go on to have a fantastic rookie campaign in Utah.  Anderson played in 52 games with the Jazz in the 1982-83 season and averaged 8.9 points on 51 percent shooting from the field as well as 5.3 rebounds, 1.3 assists and 1.2 steals a game.  One of his most dominant performances came in a January loss against the 76ers when Anderson tallied 21 points on only two missed field goal attempts to go with 11 rebounds and six assists.

6.  Thurl Bailey: Bailey was selected with the seventh pick in the first round of the 1983 draft.  Bailey played 81 games (54 starts) in the 1983-84 season and averaged 8.5 points on 51.2 percent shooting from the floor to go along with 5.7 rebounds, 1.6 assists and 1.5 blocks a game.  He most impressive game of the season came in a second round playoff game against the Phoenix Suns when Bailey finished with 26 points and 13 rebounds in a 10-point Jazz win.  For his efforts during his rookie campaign, Bailey earned NBA All-Rookie first team honors.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s