SEASON II: This NBA Season’s Most Intriguing Second Year Players

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LONZO BALL

’17-’18 Stats: 10.2 ppg, 7.2 apg, 5.6 rb

Stat of Intrigue: 32% on Catch and Shoot 3s

If anything, if Javale McGee can be disciplined in the pick & roll playing center, the Lakers can have a lenghty starting five on defense. Lonzo Ball, at 6″6 and seemingly good anticipation in passing lines, could be the head of the attack. Turnovers cause fastbreaks, and fastbreaks seem to really bring Staples Center alive. Lebron and Lonzo in the open court could be FUN. Here’s hoping Lonzo potentially missing early time doesnt harpen his chemistry development with Bron too much. The “Stat of Intrigue” to watch for is Ball’s catch and shoot percentage. He will have to be ready to knockdown open shots with the King penetrating and dishing.

John-Collins

John Collins

’17-’18 Stats: 10.5 ppg, 7.3 rpg

For anybody that likes strong pick and roll finishers, Atlanta Hawks John Collins was a great guy to watch catch passes last year. Shooters and rim runners are a match made in heaven (see Amare Stoudamire in Phoenix, Capela in Houston) and if Trae Young is the shooter he showed to be in college, he will definitely make space for rims runs for Collins. Trae has also been hailed as a good passer by those who studied him at Oklahoma, so look for a lot of hookups possibly from him to Collins.

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Ben Simmons

’17-’18 Stats: 15.8 ppg, 8.1 rpg, 8.2 apg

Stat of Intrigue: 0.1 3pa

Can he shoot? Can he shoot? Can he shoot? Can he shoot? Can he shoot? *Inserts poetic waxing about Simmons on the fast break looking like a  more graceful Lebron in his early years* Can he shoot????? Will he try????

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Donovan Mitchell

’17-’18 Stats: 20.5 ppg, 3.7 apg, 3.7 rpg

Stat of Intrigue: 3.8 fta

Does Donovan Mitchell’s second place Rookie of The Year finish, being the spark of the Jazz’s midseason turnaround and a second round playoff finish mean that Utah will be a top seed in the West this season? Whatever is the postseason result, if the Jazz are in the playoff hunt in any capacity Donovan might be the most dynamic player to watch that the team has ever had. The “Stat Of Intrigue” we chose to highlight was 3.8 free throw attempts per game. With his finishing ability and the style that the Jazz play it will be important for that number to go up.

NBA: Preseason-Orlando Magic at Dallas Mavericks

Dennis Smith Jr.

’17-’18 Stats: 15.2 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 5.2 apg

Stat Of Intrigue: 69% FT

Who else felt like they thought they would see more of Dennis Smith Jr. in their daily dose of NBA Twitter highlights? The mere presence of Luka Doncic should make DSJ more interesting. Fastbreaks and running Luka off the ball with Dennis pushng the rock seems exciting. Doncic seems like he’s a good shooter (even though his Euroleague 3pt% from the past year was only 30% on a low amount of attempts), and we definitely want to see some lobs from him to Dennis Smith Jr. Plus, DSJ will have Deandre Jordan to throw lobs to as well.

jaysonJayson Tatum

’17-’18 Stats: 13.9 ppg, 5.0 rpg, 1.6 apg

Stat of Intrigue: 48% on Catch and Shoot 3’s

It’s a shock to see Jayson Tatum only averaged 13.9 points last year, after seeing him average a big shot packed 18.5 points during the Celtics playoff run. What is interesting about Tatum is the obvious: The Celtics are loaded and they are loaded with wings. Will the presence of Gordon Hayward take away from Tatum? What about the presence of a returning Kyrie Irving? Our “Stat Of Intrigue’ for Tatum is his catch and shoot percentage last year. Although only on 2.3 attempts, 48% is fairly high, and with another solid creator in the lineup he will have to be ready to shoot that thing off of a pass.

Fultz

Markelle Fultz

’17-’18: 7.1 ppg, 3.1 rpg, 3.8 apg

Can he shoot? Can he shoot? But really, as talented as this kid looked coming out of college, theres a possibility Fultz could surprise a lot of people coming off the bench running a second unit. And just from a mental health standpoint alone, any fan should hope the best for the 2017 #1 overall pick.

 

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