Paolo Banchero named NBA's Rookie of the Year

Paolo Banchero finished his first season in the NBA exactly how he started, as the top player in the 2022 class.

Banchero was named the league’s Rookie of the Year on Tuesday, and received his trophy during a ceremony on Wednesday afternoon.

He joins Shaquille O’Neal and Mike Miller as the only Magic players to win the award.

Paolo’s mother, Rhonda Banchero said this is something he’s dreamed of since he was in 7th grade, when his father, Mario Bachero would drive him to the gym at 5 a.m.

All the hard work paid off. For the Banchero family, there was never a doubt, Paolo would take home this award.

"It was never a sense of worry or wondering if I was good and doing good enough to get the award. It was just kind of me every day asking myself, did I do what I was supposed to do, am I happy with the results?" Paolo Banchero said. "If I’m not happy, what am I going to do to bounce back?"

"He’s definitely someone who is confident in himself and that’s something that we’ve always instilled in all our kids. So it’s nice to see him be able to realize that and kind of exude that as he’s dealing with all his pressure and reward," Rhonda Banchero said.

Paolo averaged 20 points per game this season, the most of any rookie.

He received 98 out of 100 votes for 1st place, beating out fellow award finalists Jalen Williams and Walker Kessler.