Karl-Anthony Towns might have been the unanimous choice for Rookie of the Year for the 2015-16 NBA season but the 1995 was a different story. That year voters had two outstanding rookies that made their mark on the league. By the time the votes were in it ended up being a tie. The co-Rookie of the Year winners for the 1994-95 season were the Detroit Pistons’ Grant Hill and the Dallas Mavericks’ Jason Kidd.
Both players lived up to their high draft selections, with Kidd going second and Hill going third. The #1 pick of the 1994 NBA Draft, Glenn Robinson, wasn’t too shabby his first year, but the other two were key members of their teams from the get go. For sneakerheads that first season for both players brought signature kicks that both players would be known for to this day.
FILA was happy they signed Duke alumni Grant Hill to a deal out of college. Wearing the model bearing his name, he is one of very few rookies to get a signature line their first year in the NBA. During that rookie season he averaged 19.9 points, 6.4 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 1.8 steals per game in 38 minutes. He also became the first rookie to lead an NBA All-Star fan balloting and of course made the NBA All-Rookie team.
Nike was happy to see Jason Kidd accept the Rookie award. The young, upstart point guard from CAL was known for rocking the Nike Zoom Flight 95. Really he has worn the model beyond that rookie year and is the sneaker he is most tied to. In comparison to Hill he did not stuff the stats the same way, but as the point guard of the Mavericks he was the floor general leading his team. The year before the Mavericks they finished the season with the worst record in the NBA at 13–69, but with him there they improved by 26 games.
Both had very different careers in the NBA and after their professional careers ended. However they’ll always be joined together thanks to their fantastic rookie campaigns.