Victor Oladipo has been one of the NBA's top rookies all season long. He started the season coming off the bench, earned a spot in the starting lineups, and gained new fans every time he stepped on the court.
But Oladipo has struggled of late, moving back to the bench, and causing some to question whether he has hit the rookie wall just two months into the season.
Oladipo went a combined 4-of-24 from the field against Chicago and Utah on Dec. 16 and 18, scoring a combined 11 points in those two games. Afterward, Oladipo began coming off the bench again and has played only 37 total minutes in the last two games.
"You've got to let it go, especially in this league," Oladipo told the Orlando Sentinel. "If you let it build up and you let it stay with you, you're still not going to play well the next game, I don't think. So, that game has come and gone. I'm not really worried about it. I'm just worried about the next game."
Oladipo is averaging 12.9 points per game through his first 28 games entering Friday, to go along with 4.3 rebounds and 3.3 assists in 30.7 minutes. Oladipo is shooting 39.8 percent from the field, 28 percent from beyond the arc, and 74.8 percent from the foul line. The biggest problem for Oladipo so far, though, has been turnovers. He's averaging 3.3 miscues per game, making his assist-to-turnover ratio exactly 1:1.
Oladipo has fallen one spot on NBA.com's Rookie Ladder to No. 3 overall. Philadelphia's Michael Carter-Williams (Syracuse) remains in the top spot, and Utah's Trey Burke (Michigan) has passed him for the No. 2 spot.
So, the question remains: Can Oladipo push past the rookie wall and continue to have success at the NBA level? That remains to be seen, but my guess is he will be back to his productive self very soon.