While most basketball fans were watching Kobe Bryant and LeBron James duke it out one last time on Thursday night, rookies Devin Booker and Emmanuel Mudiay were playing the game of their lives over in Denver.
For those who don’t remember, Mudiay was selected sixth overall by the Denver Nuggets during the 2015 NBA Draft, while Booker was selected seven picks later by the Phoenix Suns. Both players are averaging 12.1 points per game and improving steadily as the season progresses.
Thursday was a career night for both rookie guards, as Booker dropped 35 on the Nuggets to lead all scorers, but it was Mudiay’s 30 points that led his team to victory.
It’s possible that after this whole Stephen Curry era dies down, Mudiay and Booker could be the new stars climbing the ranks. Sure, Curry isn’t going anywhere and LeBron still has a few seasons of dominance left in him, but there will be a time when Andrew Wiggins, Ben Simmons and Andre Drummond fill the headlines.
Booker’s ability to dribble coast-to-coast and beat everyone up the floor is something out of John Wall’s playbook. And as for Mudiay, he can contribute in every statistical category and finish at the hoop gracefully.
Watch out for these two guards.