In the 2021 NBA Draft class, we saw many players emerge to play important roles for their respective teams. In the end, only one player could win Rookie of the Year, and that honor went to Scottie Barnes. Check out this wholesome moment from Barnes, as he accepts his award:

Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press via AP

Barnes was selected 4th overall in the 2022 NBA Draft averaging 15.3 points, 7.5 rebounds, and 3.5 assists, shooting 49.2% from the field in the 74 games he appeared in for the Toronto Raptors this season.

Some fans were shocked to hear his name at number 4 as he was not projected to be selected at that position, expected to draft current Magic rookie, Jalen Suggs, as the Raptors looked to fill a hole at point guard, with Kyle Lowry leaving in the offseason. Nonetheless, the Raptors selected the forward out of Florida State as Barnes has silenced all his haters en route to this prestigious honor for a rookie.

It looked like Cavaliers F/C Evan Mobley was the clear front runner for the majority of the season, but with the Cavaliers dwindling after the All-Star break, it allowed for Barnes and Pistons guard Cade Cunningham to sneak into the conversation.

This easily had to be the tightest Rookie of the Year race to date. This was the smallest vote differential since the voting format was adopted, showing fans how incredible their seasons were, making it difficult for voters to come to a final decision.

Scottie Barnes, Evan Mobley, and Cade Cunningham round out the top three, with Rocket’s 2nd overall pick Jalen Green and Magic’s 8th overall pick Franz Wagner making the cut for the top five. The All-Rookie teams have yet to be announced. Here is a look at the final voting below: