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10 NBA Rookies Who Should Start Right Away In 2014-15

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10 NBA Rookies Who Should Start Right Away

Andrew Wiggins
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The 2014 NBA Draft was certainly a night to remember as numerous talented prospects found homes. Some may have been drafted higher than originally anticipated, while others strangely dropped way out of their projected ranges. Either way, through Summer League and simply raw talent, there are ten prospects who are ready to enter the starting lineup from the very beginning of the 2014-15 NBA season.

10. Shabazz Napier - Miami Heat

Shabazz Napier
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10. Shabazz Napier - Miami Heat

Shabazz Napier
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Late first-round picks rarely receive the opportunity to start, but Shabazz Napier's leadership qualities should alter this trend. Mario Chalmers has been the Miami Heat's consistent starter at the point guard position for years now -- and deservedly at times. However, as exemplified in the 2014 playoffs, Chalmers is no better than a backup PG with no elite ability to create for others. Yes he is a veteran, but Miami must look to develop Napier.

9. Rodney Hood - Utah Jazz

Rodney Hood
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9. Rodney Hood - Utah Jazz

Rodney Hood
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Yet another late first-round pick, Rodney Hood should be the Utah Jazz's starting small forward this season. Although highly unlikely due to the recent Gordon Hayward extension, Hood has a ton of potential to evolve into a very complete player later on in his NBA career. Since Utah will be rebuilding for years to come, the team might as well give the young guys extra minutes to really figure out the game first hand.

8. Nik Stauskas - Sacramento Kings

Nik Stauskas
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8. Nik Stauskas - Sacramento Kings

Nik Stauskas
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Shooting guard has been a major issue for the Sacramento Kings. Ben McLemore fell short of expectations last season, resulting in Nik Stauskas at No. 8 who is primarily known for his outstanding shooting ability from behind the three point arc. Sacramento was nearly the worst team in three-point field goal percentage last season, so why not give the sharpshooter a chance? There is certainly no doubt Stauskas is a better shooter than McLemore.

7. Elfrid Payton - Orlando Magic

Elfrid Payton
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7. Elfrid Payton - Orlando Magic

Elfrid Payton
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Perhaps the one player who drastically raised his draft stock in individual workouts was Elfrid Payton out of Louisiana-Lafayette. Despite falling to No. 10, Payton may potentially be the best point guard out of the gates this year. He is defensive minded, which is of the utmost importance in our PG dominated league today. As long as Payton maintains his stellar defense, the lack of offense should be no problem for the Orlando Magic.

6. Noah Vonleh - Charlotte Hornets

Noah Vonleh
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6. Noah Vonleh - Charlotte Hornets

Noah Vonleh
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The big-handed Noah Vonleh also fell far from his projected draft placement, landing with the Charlotte Hornets at No. 9. The near 7-footer has a long way to go, but he can create a deadly frontcourt tandem alongside Big Al Jefferson. Considering that Charlotte's options at PF are extremely limited, starting Vonleh at the position immediately is a no-brainer. I'm sure Jefferson will teach him various post moves along the way.

5. Dante Exum - Utah Jazz

Dante Exum
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5. Dante Exum - Utah Jazz

Dante Exum
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The Australian phenomenon and most unknown prospect of all, Dante Exum should and will receive the starting nod this season. It is still to be determined whether he will play the majority of his minutes at point guard or shooting, but either way Exum has a ton to prove. His ball handling skills are supposed to be amongst the best, yet most scouts have barely witnessed him play firsthand. Exum needs to be thrown into the pack of wolves.

4. Marcus Smart - Boston Celtics

Marcus Smart
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4. Marcus Smart - Boston Celtics

Marcus Smart
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This one may be a bit controversial, but I'm going along with it anyway. Marcus Smart should be the starting point guard for the Boston Celtics. Rajon Rondo must be traded and Smart must take over the reigns being the bulldog that he has proven to be. Outside shooting will be a problem -- there is no question about that. As long as he remains aggressive and competitive like he is, Smart will earn Boston's respect in no time.

3. Julius Randle - Los Angeles Lakers

Julius Randle
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3. Julius Randle - Los Angeles Lakers

2014 NBA Rookie Photo Shoot
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On a frontcourt heavy roster, how does a rookie find his way into the starting lineup? Well, it's not going to be a cakewalk nor will it be easy to bench Carlos Boozer. However, the Los Angeles Lakers have no other choice but to start Julius Randle as Lakers fans are rapidly becoming more and more impatient. Randle's expectations are through the roof, so forcing him to lose valuable playing time to suit a rented Boozer just makes no sense.

2. Andrew Wiggins - Minnesota Timberwolves

Andrew Wiggins
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2. Andrew Wiggins - Minnesota Timberwolves

Andrew Wiggins
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Being drafted first overall by the Cleveland Cavaliers then instantaneously being traded to the Minnesota Timberwolves definitely is a lot to handle for such a young player like Andrew Wiggins. On the surface it appears as if Wiggins has been handed the short end of the stick, but realistically the trade is just what he needed. In Minnesota, Wiggins now has the freedom to play his natural SF position, which should help him develop immensely.

1. Jabari Parker- Milwaukee Bucks

Jabari Parker
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1. Jabari Parker- Milwaukee Bucks

Jabari Parker
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Although he has never played an NBA game, Jabari Parker is already expected to be the leader of the Milwaukee Bucks. Parker is who Milwaukee has coveted all along, so I do not see any situation in which he would not start. Along with Giannis Antetokounmpo, the Bucks have assembled a potential dangerous one-two punch for many years to come.