10 very good young NBA players who were silent hits

Notes

PJ Washington (Charlotte Hornets)

A rebound season for PJ Washington. Back from last year, when he was expected to explode, the 24-year-old winger took advantage of the departure of Miles Bridges, who nobody signed after he was accused of hitting his wife, getting playing time and boosting your stats. . Averaged 16 points and 5 assists. But hey, the Hornets suck.

Austin Reaves (Los Angeles Lakers)

Lakers new Alex Caruso. The matchup is a little easier: an undrafted white player who suddenly emerges and earns his spot in the rotation by playing hard. But the profiles are still slightly different. Austin Reaves is more offensive and his outside skills are very valuable to Los Angeles. He simply became one of the most important players in the rotation behind three stars.

Trey Murphy III (New Orleans Pelicans)

A sophomore in climbing! Above all, Trey Murphy III got off to a hot start before going down in the lineup. According to those not on the Pelicans’ staff, he still has some very interesting but more erratic performances at times. There’s a trigger that can catch fire at any time – 5 game-winning baskets in the last win against Chicago – and therefore an interior that expands the lines. Enough to further strengthen the bench of a decidedly deep team.

10. Onyeka Okongwu (Atlanta Hawks)

He fits that definition of “flying under the radar” perfectly. His name is rarely mentioned in reviews or articles about the best young players at his position. His statistics are slightly lower than last season. Even if he had 8 points and 6 rebounds in just 19 minutes.

However, Onyeka Okongwu could be the player that pushes Clint Capela to the Atlanta exit. He’s weaker, less proven, less experienced than the Swiss, but if the Falcons believe Okongwu is ready to take on the responsibilities of ownership, they could try to learn Capela’s value by restoring another asset. The future Mr. Double-double until the end of the season.

9. De’Anthony Melton (Philadelphia Sixers)

What a great pick for the Sixers. Typically the kind of obscure but important player that Daryl Morey knows how to find on the market. De’Anthony Melton was an underrated member of the Grizzlies rotation – and they miss him! – last season. He is one of the few reasons for satisfaction in Philadelphia at the start of the season.

The back provides 11 points, 38% three-pointers, 4+ rebounds, 3+ assists and 2 steals in 27 minutes. It also perfectly complements the stars of the team. Soldiers in his style are what can win a franchise…provided you have real leaders around you (which is less certain in Philly).

8. Bowl Bowl (Orlando Magic)

His work has already been mentioned in this week’s BasketSession.

While Victor waits for Wembanya, Bol Bol is already revolutionizing Magic

A taste of Victor Wembanyama, in less exciting proportions. The “desire” version, even if the term is oversimplified. The son of Manute Bol is carving out a real niche for himself in the Magic, and therefore in the NBA, with skills rarely seen for a player of his size.

7. Alperen Sheng (Houston Rocket)

It’s hard to care about the Rockets because it’s not always fun to watch the “two man show” of Jalen Green and Kevin Porter Jr. But behind the two scorers, they have one of the most exciting rotations in the league! Undoubtedly Alperen Shengun and this crazy, most return-to-the-basket insider. From all over the NBA.

Obviously, he needs to improve defensively to avoid being like compatriot Enes Kanter, but the 20-year-old Turk has already produced almost 15 points and more than 8 rebounds in 26 minutes. Houston does a little better when he’s on the field.

6. Grant Williams (Boston Celtics)

He is already well known to most basketball fans after being one of the architects of the Celtics’ heroic run last season that finally lost in the NBA Finals. A few months later, Grant Williams is worth even more. His averages don’t wow the crowd (9.8 points, 4.8 rebounds), but the winger is solid and a staple in the rotation of the league’s best team.

Grant Williams can be a replacement or a backup throughout his career and still establish himself as a very quality basketball player. He has all the “around players” that will get his team to the postseason. PCs Tucker, Trevor Ariza and company. It’s hard to imagine ending without a ring.

5. Bones Hyland (Denver Nuggets)

Divisive player. But a hit player. Bones Hyland is cut as the sixth man: diminutive but not a leader, a holy ball handler, sometimes capable of calling the shots or self-sabotaging his team. Fortunately for the Nuggets, he hits them up more often than down.

Hyland is Denver’s X-factor every time he takes the field. He is an offensive weapon off the bench with 15 points in 21 minutes. He’s playing just two more minutes and planting five more than last year. He’s a real step up and already an important asset for a Colorado franchise that dreams of going as far as possible in the playoffs.

4. Nic Claxton (Brooklyn Nets)

The only Nets player to have a really good season with Kevin Durant. Nic Claxton is a self-imposed staple in Brooklyn, though it’s sometimes difficult to get him to play with Ben Simmons. But it’s not that bad. If the Aussie ever manages to turn into Draymond Green on steroids, he could be a more offensive/less defensive version of Kevon Looney.

Claxton remains light in defending some corners, but is consistent, connects well on pick-and-rolls and is efficient. 11.7 points on 72% shooting and 8.3 rebounds per game. If Brooklyn had such solid and consistent players, the New Yorkers would be in the top 4 in the Eastern Conference.

3. Jaden McDaniels (Minnesota Timberwolves)

He’s only 22 years old, in his third NBA season, but he could already be a key for Minnesota. An unfair responsibility for a player who thrives with “four” All-Stars at the helm. A thankless role. But Jaden McDaniels fills that in nicely, and he’s a big reason why the Timberwolves have been popular lately.

A very tall winger must create a connection between the back and the front area of ​​his team. He does this with his rising outside address (37%), length, defense, mobility and athleticism.

2. Kevin Huerter (Sacramento Kings)

IMMEDIATE SIGN!!!! After each victory, the Kings started shooting a Star Wars-style purple light into the sky. It’s silly, but it’s funny. If they do that often these days, it’s because Kevin Huerter plays basketball every night. He might be the best shooter in the league right now.

Compared to Klay Thompson, the young quarterback is starting to approach his role model, at least offensively. He is shooting almost 50% behind the arc while attempting more than 7 per game! crazy Also, it’s not a penguin ball in hand. While not a great creator, Huerter remains a decent playmaker. He is only 24 years old. Sacramento has an interesting player.

1. Devin Wassel (San Antonio Spurs)

Spurs new star. Undoubtedly the best player in a team with a rather weak but exciting young hard core. The Texans play some really good looking basketball. And Devin Vassell is their best man because of it. He may not have pure franchise player potential, but Khris Middleton’s trajectory will hold water.

Meanwhile, he is putting up over 20 points, almost 4 rebounds and almost 4 assists. 48% in shots and 44% in threes. Little is said about him, but he is a very good player. We’ll have to keep our eyes on the San Antonio side.

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