Most Improved Player
As said before, Spencer Dinwiddie was a finalist for this award last season. Dinwiddie had a good year with Brooklyn and went from a player struggling to stay on an NBA roster to the main cog in the backcourt rotation.
Victor Oladipo of the Indiana Pacers won the 2017-18 Most Improved Player award, beating Dinwiddie and Houston Rockets big man Clint Capela.
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After a good season for Dinwiddie, the question rises whether or not he can improve again on that impressive season. Since Dinwiddie is expected to have a similar season in 2018-19, he is not one of the Nets that are favored to win the award.
The two Nets that have a chance of being in the conversation for Most Improved Player are D’Angelo Russell and Caris LeVert.
The 2018-19 season can be a make-or-break season for the Nets guard regarding his future with Brooklyn.
Since Brooklyn could have $50 million to $70 million in cap space next offseason, Brooklyn has a good chance getting a big-name point guard if they believe Russell is not the guy for the future.
Russell had a good season with the Brooklyn Nets in 2017-18. Unfortunately injuries played a big role in Russell’s season, sidelining the guard a little over two months total. Despite the injury setback, Russell played consistently the remainder of the season.
He averaged 25.7 minutes, 15.5 points, 5.2 assists and 3.9 rebounds per game.
Heading into the 2018-19 season, Russell will have to set up his play and become the main leader of the Brooklyn Nets. If Russell can raise his numbers and lead the Nets into the playoffs, he will have a chance at being in the conversation for Most Improved Player.
King James Gospel
Caris LeVert has been improving each season with the Brooklyn Nets. To go along with his improvements, LeVert has been given bigger roles.
The 2017-18 season was a good season for LeVert. He played well on both ends of the floor and saw some minutes at the point guard position. LeVert plays best at the 3. He is a below-average 3-point shooter, but had a very good finish last season.
He shot 34.7 percent overall, but hit 37.3 percent of his deep attempts after the All-Star break.
LeVert may not be an average 3-point shooter, but he does a great job driving the ball. LeVert uses his footwork to find holes in the lane and finish with both hands. To go along with his strong driving game is his mid-range shooting and vision.
LeVert can shoot the mid-range jumper well especially from the top of the key. He also has good court vision and can make the extra pass down low or a kick-out pass to a 3-point shooter.
His court vision is a reason why Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson tested LeVert at the point guard position last season.
LeVert can have a chance to be in the conversation for Most Improved Player but it will take a lot to get there. He will have to not only double his numbers but help push the Brooklyn Nets into the playoffs.