Paolo Banchero joins LeBron James, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar with historic NBA debut

Orlando Magic No. 1 pick Paolo Banchero put himself in rare company during his NBA debut Wednesday night. The Orlando Magic opened the 2022-23 season on the road against the Detroit Pistons. Although the Magic lost, all eyes were on this year's top draft selection, Paolo Banchero.

The 19-year-old rookie finished his first NBA game with 27 points (11-18 FG), nine rebounds, five assists and two blocks in 35 minutes. 

Banchero joined Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and LeBron James as the only No. 1 picks since 1969 to record at least 25 points, five rebounds and five assists in an NBA debut. 

The former Duke Blue Devil also scored the most points by an NBA rookie in his debut since Allen Iverson had 30 points in 1996.

NETS' BEN SIMMONS SCORES FOUR POINTS, FOULS OUT IN BROOKLYN REGULAR-SEASON DEBUT: ‘IT TAKES TIME’

Banchero led the Magic in scoring and set the tone from the opening tip. He scored the team's first four points and finished the first quarter with seven points on 3-3 shooting.

Three of his 13 fourth quarter points came early in the quarter when he threw down a powerful one-handed dunk over Pistons guard Cory Joseph, drawing a foul for a traditional 3-point play. 

Banchero's 27 points were the most points scored by a Magic player in a debut. He outscored former Magic greats Penny Hardaway, Shaquille O'Neal and Dwight Howard. 

CLICK HERE FOR MORE SPORTS COVERAGE ON FOXNEWS.COM

Both O'Neal and Howard were No. 1 draft picks in their respective classes. 


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Orlando Magic No. 1 pick Paolo Banchero put himself in rare company during his NBA debut Wednesday night. The Orlando Magic opened the 2022-23 season on the road against the Detroit Pistons. Although the Magic lost, all eyes were on this year's top draft selection, Paolo Banchero.

The 19-year-old rookie finished his first NBA game with 27 points (11-18 FG), nine rebounds, five assists and two blocks in 35 minutes. 

Banchero joined Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and LeBron James as the only No. 1 picks since 1969 to record at least 25 points, five rebounds and five assists in an NBA debut. 

The former Duke Blue Devil also scored the most points by an NBA rookie in his debut since Allen Iverson had 30 points in 1996.

NETS' BEN SIMMONS SCORES FOUR POINTS, FOULS OUT IN BROOKLYN REGULAR-SEASON DEBUT: ‘IT TAKES TIME’

Banchero led the Magic in scoring and set the tone from the opening tip. He scored the team's first four points and finished the first quarter with seven points on 3-3 shooting.

Three of his 13 fourth quarter points came early in the quarter when he threw down a powerful one-handed dunk over Pistons guard Cory Joseph, drawing a foul for a traditional 3-point play. 

Banchero's 27 points were the most points scored by a Magic player in a debut. He outscored former Magic greats Penny Hardaway, Shaquille O'Neal and Dwight Howard. 

CLICK HERE FOR MORE SPORTS COVERAGE ON FOXNEWS.COM

Both O'Neal and Howard were No. 1 draft picks in their respective classes. 

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