15 NBA legends who never won Rookie of the Year

The 2024 NBA Draft will hopefully feature a new generation of stars but only one can win Rookie of the Year and here are 15 NBA legends who never won the award.
Ray Allen v Kobe Bryant
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14) Kevin Garnett

Just a teenager living his dream of playing professional basketball, Kevin Garnett didn’t take long to make his presence and impact felt in the NBA. Throughout the season, he displayed remarkable versatility for a rookie, showcasing his ability to score, rebound, and defend effectively, in addition to the agility and athleticism that made him such an intriguing prospect. Although his 10.4 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 1.6 blocks per game won’t blow you away, that's pretty good for a 19-year-old kid with a wiry frame coming straight out of high school, and playing out of position. 

It’s also worth noting that he came off the bench for the first half of the season. As a full-time starter over the final 42 games of the season, Garnett averaged 14.1 points, 8.5 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 1.3 steals, and 2.3 blocks while 53.3 percent from the field, compared to 6.3 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.2 assists, 0.8 steals, and 0.6 blocks in the first 38 games of the season. 

Unfortunately, his second-half surge wasn’t enough to overcome his rather pedestrian first half. While he was selected to the NBA All-Rookie Second Team, he only received one vote for Rookie of the Year, finishing in fifth place as Damon Stoudemire won the award by a landslide.