Jalen Duren, the young strong big man out of Detroit has made a real case for rookie of the year. Going from outside of the rankings of the ROY conversation( rookie of the year) to entering the top 5 candidates. Having outstanding games like 30 points, 17 rebounds, with 4 blocks.
Putting him alongside the great company of Shaq, David Robinson, Tim Duncan, and Hakeem. Making his name all over the stat sheet is what has gotten him into this rookie of the year conversation, and what will keep him in it. Duren is also top 2 in double doubles amongst rookies. A young talented core is coming out of Detroit and after some time to season and understand the game, Detroit, led by Jalen Duren will be a nightmare.
In his rookie year, Jalen Duren is averaging 8.7 points, 8.8 rebounds, shooting 63.4% from the field. Being alongside high upside guards in Jaden Ivy and Cade Cunningham, having skills like rim running, being able to be aggressive off the pick and roll and working out of the low and high blocks are important. Duren has been able to not only work where he is comfortable getting drop down passes and catching lobs, but has found himself calling for the ball creating plays for himself. A strong bigman like himself will also be fouled a lot and be able to play through that, and Duren has shown improvement with his ability to finish through contact.
What makes Duren so talented is even at 6’11, 250 pounds, Duren is very mobile. He is not a preferred matchup for guards, but can hold his own if a switch is needed. As a rookie it is a tough task to have to guard some of the biggest stars in our game at the power forward and center position. Jalen Duren holds his own night in and out, but will have to be that defensive anchor as long as he stays in Detroit.
Jalen Duren is an all around skilled old school school like bigman. He doesn’t have the three point shooting like most modern big men, and he struggles at the free throw line shooting a career 62%. Duren poses out the gym athleticism, nice touch around the rim, adjustable style to any kind of coaching. Playing under Penny Hardaway in college translated very well for Duren as he was able to show he’s very coachable and willing to extend his role. On a team full of other young and athletic players, staying together, health, and off court basketball things will be the only things stopping the Pistons.
Credit – (AP Photo/Duane Burleson)