It’s not easy being a young man in the NBA, as you have to adjust your body to the hard work needed to go on through a full season, put a lot of work in the gym and put up with the constant traveling, not to mention all the maturity and mental adjustments also needed to succeed.
More often than not, young ballers aren’t able to live up to the expectations that surround him early on, at least during the first couple of years of his NBA career, as there are a lot of factors they just can’t control.
Coaching changes, injuries or just lack of time to grow to their mistakes can really hurt a young player’s career, and just a handful of players find the motivation and determination to prove their doubters wrong.
Today, we’re going to let you know about 5 young men that have been under the spotlight for some time now, and not for good reasons; letting you know about our top 5 bounceback candidates for next season.
5. Jahlil Okafor
Jahlil Okafor was once considered to be one of the best offensive talents the league had seen in ages, entering the NBA with a lot of praise due to his elite footwork and rebounding skills, as well as his round up low post game.
After a failed stint with the Philadelphia 76ers and barely seeing the floor with the Nets, we expect the former 3rd overall pick to be highly motivated to prove his worth next season when he’s finally set to become a free agent and will have the power to choose where to show his talents.
4. Malik Monk
Malik Monk was one of this year’s biggest busts, as the former Wildcat was considered to be one of the deadliest young scorers in the nation and with all the injuries in the mediocre Charlotte Hornets, he could have a huge role in the team’s offense.
Following a disappointing rookie season, the Hornets will have a new coaching staff that would be smart to build through Monk and his offensive talent, and we could expect him to become a starter from day one.
3. Emmanuel Mudiay
Emmanuel Mudiay was one of the latest prospects to pull a ‘Brandon Jennings’ and play overseas to get paid instead of going to college, but after what we’ve seen of the strong and athletic young man, that wasn’t the smartest choice for him.
Mudiay is still quite raw and rough in both ends of the floor but the upside is still there, and coach Fizdale has already stated that he’s going to make him a stud, so we should expect a lot of touches on offense for him next season.
2. Jonathan Isaac
Jonathan Isaac was forced to sit through most of his rookie season due to several injuries, with the Magic out of playoff contention early on and having absolutely no rush or motivation to throw his star rookie under the bus.
Now that he’s finally healthy, the time has come for him to prove he’s got the tools to become one of the best 3 and D players in the league at both forward spots, and with Orlando not being a contender for a couple of years to come, they would be wise to let him learn from his mistakes.
1. Markelle Fultz
Markelle Fultz was arguably this year’s biggest bummer, as he literally forgot how to shoot and was a non-factor all season long in the sidelines with a shoulder injury after entering the league as a highly praised 1st overall pick.
Nonetheless, he proved that he can still help in a huge variety of ways over the last couple of games of the season, and with the Sixers quickly surging as a major force in the Eastern Conference, he’s our prime bounce-back candidate for the upcoming season.