2. Mikal Bridges
Mikal Bridges has been putting up some seriously impressive numbers during his first full season serving as the focal point of Brooklyn Nets basketball, as he finds himself boasting stellar counting stats of 21.7 points, 5.1 rebounds, 3.7 assists, 1.0 steals, and half a block per game while shooting 45.4 percent from the floor and 36.0 percent from deep.
And yet, despite this on-paper production, the eye test throughout the campaign has suggested that the forward is struggling to shed the moniker of rising stud and take on the label of legitimate star.
Frankly, examples such as his poorly executed missed game-winning attempt against the Miami Heat on January 15 and his failure to contain Anfernee Simons in the closing seconds of their gut-wrenching loss to the Portland Trail Blazers on January 17 showcase how evident it is that Bridges could use for added help in both the playmaking and defensive departments.
Say what you will about Simmons, but at the very least he's a player who can provide aid in both of these aforementioned areas which, in turn, could only stand to benefit the Nets centerpiece in a major way.
From his All-Defensive background to his career average of 7.5 assists per game, be it serving as a reliable ally on the less glamorous side of the ball or as a top-notch facilitator to help create clean scoring looks, getting the veteran guard back onto the floor is bound to take some serious pressure off of Bridges' shoulders and help him in a plethora of ways during this second half of the season.