March 11, 2016: LSU Tigers forward Ben Simmons (25) during the SEC Championship Tournament game between LSU and Tennessee. LSU defeats Tennessee 84-75 at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, TN. (Photos by Frank Mattia/Icon Sportswire)

First overall pick and phenom from LSU, Ben Simmons, suffered a fracture in the fifth metatarsal in his right foot recently and isn’t expected to miss three months, which sets his return around December or January.

The report came from Marc Stein of ESPN, and not only will the Philadelphia 76ers suffer as a team, but the other rookies from the 2016 class will now have a fair shot at bringing home the Rookie of the Year award. Although Simmons wasn’t a lock to win, he is the most talented player in the class, and his all-around dominance would’ve led to some gaudy numbers being put up.

Please note the list is in no particular order. 

3. Brandon Ingram, Los Angeles Lakers

March 19, 2016: G/F Brandon Ingram (14) of the Duke Blue Devils with a free throw during a game versus the Yale Bulldogs in the Second Round of the Division I Men’s Basketball Championship at Dunkin Donuts Center in Providence, RI. (Fred Kfoury III/Icon Sportswire)

The 6’9 forward from Duke looks to be the next up. Brandon Ingram was the only other player that was receiving consideration for the number one overall pick, but Philly elected to take the man from down under.

His skill set is remarkable, though.

As Ben Simmons was getting compared to LeBron James, Ingram and Kevin Durant was the other comparison coming up regularly. With his size, length, and play style, it’s only fitting. During his lone season in Durham, Ingram emerged as a premier shooter and nailed 80 threes at a 41 percent clip for the Blue Devils.

His situation with the Lakers would give him the best chance to produce since the next face of the franchise has yet to develop-it appears to be Jordan Clarkson, who, I believe will have a breakout season this year. Ingram will make his mark as a floor spacer until Luke Walton is comfortable giving him a bigger role. Once he’s getting more minutes and more shots, his all-around scoring ability will be on display.

2. Jamal Murray, Denver Nuggets

March 13, 2016: Kentucky Wildcats guard Jamal Murray (23) pulls out the bow and arrow after scoring a 3 pointer during the 2016 SEC Basketball Championship Tournament final game between Kentucky and Texas A&M. Kentucky defeated Texas A&M in OT 82-77 at Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, TN. (Frank Mattia/Icon Sportswire)

Murray is another guy with a chance to become a legitimate ROY candidate. It’s unclear how productive Emmanual Mudiay will be in his sophomore season, and Murray is expected to see a decent amount of time as the backup shooting guard to Gary Harris. Fortunately for Denver and Murray, the former Kentucky Wildcat has combo guard skills and will slide over to the point guard spot if Jameer Nelson and Mudiay don’t play as expected.

Murray is a natural scorer, and he can do it from any spot on the floor. He’s especially lethal when he’s working off the ball, but he can put it on the floor and is athletic enough to challenge people at the rim. If he puts it all together this year and starts seeing big chunks of minutes, the race for ROY is going to get hot very quick.

1. Buddy Hield, New Orleans Pelicans

March 26, 2016 - Anaheim, CA, USA - Oklahoma guard Buddy Hield lets out a yell after cutting a string off the basket. The Oklahoma Sooners won the NCAA West Regional Championship over Oregon on Saturday. (Paul Rodriguez/Zuma Press/Icon Sportswire)

After a tremendous senior season with the Oklahoma Sooners, Buddy Hield rocketed up draft boards and landed with the New Orleans Pelicans at number six overall. Coming out of college, there were some questions regarding his defense and athleticism, but one thing was sure: Hield can light up the scoreboard.

In his final year at OU, Hield averaged 25 points per night with a .501/.457/.880 slash line. His all-around ability to put the ball in the basket was unrivaled in college, and he could rain down eight-or-more threes a night, or take it off the bounce to the cup and finish.

With New Orleans lack of depth at the two, Hield can see more action than anticipated. E’Twuan Moore seems to be the only guard ahead of him on the depth chart, and while Moore is a good player, Hield’s offensive versatility will give him a run for his money. Hield has shown promise, albeit it was one preseason game, but a 19-point night is nothing to scoff at.

Data courtesy of Basketball-Reference

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