After beating the Lakers (who had won 7 straight) yesterday, Blake Griffin exploded for 47 point, 14 rebound in a win over the Pacers today. Those are Wilt numbers and as such DBSF finds it appropriate to compare Blake's rookie numbers against some other great bigs. (Note: Wilt is excluded from this list because as a rookie he dropped a meager 38 points and 27 rebounds per game--in elementary statistics, the definition of an event that "positively skews" the data.)
Name: Points per game/ RBs per game/ Blocks per game/ FG%
Blake: 22 ppg/ 12.7 rbg/ 0.6 bpg/ 51.5%
Bill Walton: 12.8 ppg/ 12.6 rbg/2.7bpg/ 51.3%
The Admiral: 24.3 ppg/ 12.0 rpg/ 3.9 bpg/ 53.1%
Duncan: 21.1 ppg/ 11.9 rbg/ 2.5 bpg/ 54.9%
Shaq: 23.4 ppg/ 13.9 rbg/ 3.5 bpg/ 56.2%
Moses Malone (ABA): 18.8 ppg/ 14.6 rbg/ 1.5 bpg/ 57.1%
Hakeem the Dream: 20.6 ppg/ 11.9 rbg/ 2.7 bpg/ 53.8%
Barkley: 14.0 ppg/ 8.6 rbg/ 1.0 bpg/ 54.5%
Now this list should be qualified as Blake is only 21 (turns 22 in March). Duncan was 23 as a rookie and the Admiral was 24. However, Shaq, Moses Malone, and Barkley were all younger than Griffin in their rookie year. Below are their numbers in the season they turned 22.
Shaq: 29.4 ppg/ 13.2 rbg/ 2.9 bpg/ 59.9%
Moses Malone (NBA): 19.4 ppg/ 15.0 rbg/ 1.3 bpg/ 49.9%
Barkley: 20.0 ppg/ 12.8 rbg/ 1.6 bpg/ 57.2%
It should also be acknowledged that this group--consisting primarily of conventional centers, save Barkley--lack Griffin's passing and play-making skills, and his ability to run the 3. Regardless, thus far into his young career--statistically, at least--Griffin falls in the company of Duncan, Hakeem the Dream, and Chuck Barkley. Perhaps no better sign that he will be a Laker/ Celtic/ Knick/ trending big-market team in 2015.