Most Improved Players

Every year there are a lot of players that are improving their game, either in their offense or being more aggressive in defense, scoring more points, having more assists, grabing more boards, all the players are preparing in the off-season summer for a single goal, to improve their playstyle. But, even if there are a lot of players that are slightly improving year by year, there are some who just add some more to their skill set. In this article, we want to show you some of the best candidates for the “Most Improved Player” award this season.

Paskal Siakam, the 27th overall pick in 2016, is playing a solid role for the Toronto Raptors’ success this year, averaging 15,2 PPG, 2,9 APG, 7 RPG to go along with 1 steal. Obviously, all those numbers are a career high for him, currently being in his 3rd year in the league. Recently he had a game-winner against Phoenix Suns, when the game was tied 109-109 with 4 seconds to go, he took the game in his hands and beat the buzzer with a driving bank shot. Siakam is a good presence in the paint and he can shoot the mid-range, and the Raptors could only be happy that he has developed in the player that he is today.

De’Aaron Fox, the young gun from Sacramento Kings is having a very good season this year, leading his team with 17,6 PPG, 7,2 APG (13th in the league), 3,7 RPG and 1,7 steals-per-game. His shooting percentages are also higher than his rookie season, with 46 FG% and 36% from three-point land. The former number 5 pick from the 2017 draft class is only 21 years old and is already showing signs of a player that can lead a franchise for a long time. He is the main reason for the Kings improvement this year as a team, being currently on the 10th place in the West with a 25-25 record, only 2 games behind a play-off spot, a thing that is quite unusual for a Sacramento fan. The kid’s ceiling is very high and he will develop in a All-Star eventually in the future.

Buddy Hield, another Sacramento Kings player, is showing improvements in all the categories, being in his 3rd year in the NBA. Kobe Bryant had some kind words for him since he was in college, saying that he is a good player and he can only get better if he continue to train hard. Kobe even had a workout with him before his rookie season. Two years and a half later, he is averaging 20,2 PPG, 2,3 APG and 4,9 RPG while shooting 47% from the field and 45% from beyond the arc. As we can see, the Kings are in good hands with these two young players who are beginning to play very well on a nightly basis.

Even though Chicago Bulls are having a very rough year and they adopted tanking as the main solution for their rebuilding process, Zach Lavine is having the best season of his career in terms of personal numbers. He improved in every aspect of his game and he seems to be the only one who is trying to do something for the team this year, currently sitting on the 13th place in the East, having a “battle” with the Knicks, Cavs and Phoenix for the potentially number 1 pick next year. Lavine has 22,9 PPG, 4,2 APG, 4,4 RPG and 1 steal-per-game.

Montrezl Harrell, a player that has come from nowhere this season, is suddenly a seemingly imposing underneath the basket, doing the “dirty” work for the Los Angeles Clippers in the paint. Nobody thought that the Clippers would even have a small chance of being on a play-off spot this season, but for now, they are battling against the odds and the 8th seed is taken by them, and Harrell is one of the reason for their success. He is averaging 15,8 PPG, 1,7 APG, 6,7 RPG and 1,3 blocks-per-game in his 4th year. If he continues to play at this level and the Clippers get a play-off spot, he is a strong candidate for the award, even if he is an “underdog”.

Andrei Dilean,

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