Under-the-Radar NBA Players Poised for Breakout Seasons
The NBA season is a time when players can make a name for themselves, as they’re given the opportunity to stand out from the rest of the bunch and hopefully put up numbers that can warrant the attention they deserve.
Sometimes players can be held back from these opportunities, either due to injury or lack of minutes.
Regardless of the situation, this year the players listed below finally have their chance to shine and become more notorious in a league that generally only praises those that can post impressive numbers.
Orlando Magic: Tobias Harris, SF/PF
Last year Tobias Harris was at the top of many breakout lists before the start of the 2013-2014 season, as the combo forward posted an impressive statline of 17.3 points and 8.5 rebounds in 2012.
However a severe ankle sprain never gave Harris a chance to fully prepare for the following year, as he nearly missed the entire preseason and was continually affected by the injury as the season progressed.
With a fully healed ankle and the opportunity to fill the team’s need at small forward, Harris appears poised to post the same numbers he did a couple years ago, if he can remain fully healthy.
Portland Trailblazers: C.J. McCollum, SG/PG
Like Harris, rookie C.J. McCollum experienced numerous foot issues, which caused the former Leigh star to miss a total of 44 games, before being regulated to a bench role for the remainder of the season.
Now with Mo Williams opting out of his contract and the Blazers desperately needing more scoring production off the bench, McCollum has an opportunity to become just the type of sixth man the team needs.
Remember, it was only 2 years ago McCollum was averaging nearly 24 points and shooting 51.6 percent from three point range with Leigh University.
Oklahoma City Thunder: Steven Adams, C
Adams was a pleasant surprise for Oklahoma City fans this season, averaging 2 points shy of a double-double per 36 minutes while providing toughness and superb rim protection, despite being labeled as a guy that may need to play in the D-League.
The New Zealand native even got into the skin of some of the toughest opponents, showing no fear against veterans like Zach Randolph and Vince Carter in the video above.
With Kendrick Perkins bound to be amnestied or placed in a reduced role, expect to see Adams take the reigns as the team’s new starting center and post close to those per 36 numbers next season.
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