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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12) Scottie Pippen

While Scottie Pippen is one of the NBA’s most decorated legends, his career started somewhat rocky. From a statistical standpoint, his 7.9 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 2.1 assists per game were pretty underwhelming for a top-five pick. His low-scoring output can partially be attributed to him coming off the bench for the entire season and playing on the same team as the G.O.A.T. He made significant contributions outside of scoring, but his lack of offense likely kept him out of award conversations as he didn’t receive a single Rookie of the Year vote. 

Unfortunately, the ROY is a regular-season award. During the postseason, Pip turned up his play and overtook the starting small forward spot, helping lead the Chicago Bulls to the Eastern Conference Semifinals. He fouled out of his first start but not before recording 24 points, 6 rebounds, 5 assists, and 3 steals in an elimination game against the Cleveland Cavaliers. 

Although he wasn’t even considered for the Rookie of the Year, Pippen's rookie season saw him gradually adjust to the NBA game and establish himself as a versatile and impactful player. While his offensive production was relatively modest, he made significant contributions on defense with his rebounds, steals, and blocks, showcasing his athleticism and defensive prowess.