Don't have an account?
Join the Best Live Fantasy Chat Community!

Lost password? [X]

Receive free daily analysis:

NFL    NBA    MLB

Already have an account? Log in here.

[X]

Forgot Password


[X]

Second-Year NBA Players Who Won't Breakout


An NBA player's second season can be a big time when it comes to breaking out. Year One is about learning the game, and that second time around is when we often start to see a player show what they can become.

It can also be a time when players who struggled as rookies continue to struggle. It's hard to become an NBA rotation player. Sometimes it'll take more than a year for a player to be ready to break out.

Let's look at five second-year NBA players who aren't primed for a second-year explosion.

Editor's Note: Get any full-season NBA and DFS Premium Pass for 50% off. Our exclusive Preseason Draft Kit, 10 In-Season Lineup/DFS tools, and daily Premium DFS Research. Sign Up Now!

 

Mohamed Bamba (C, Orlando Magic)

Mo Bamba's contributions at this point: that song "Mo Bamba" and one game against the Kings where he had five blocks and the Magic lost to the Kings.

The Magic were surprisingly good last year, making the postseason behind an All-Star campaign from Nikola Vucevic that led the Magic to re-sign Vucevic and put a pause in the idea of Bamba being the team's future center. Things could go south for Orlando and they could deal Vucevic -- whose contract decreases each year -- but for this season at least, expect Bamba to be limited to a bench role.

His rookie season saw Bamba play 47 games, averaging 6.2 points, 5.0 rebounds, and 1.4 blocks per contest. He shot 48.1 percent from the floor and 30 percent from three on 1.5 attempts per game.

Maybe he stretches his game out more and the Magic can play him some at the four, but this is an extremely long team, so they have guys who better fit that spot. My guess is that Bamba won't reach 20 minutes per game as an average this year and will see just modest improvement in his numbers.

 

Collin Sexton (G, Cleveland Cavaliers)

One sign that your team might not have much faith in you is when they draft a player the next year who plays your position. Collin Sexton played point guard for 100 percent of his minutes last year per Basketball Reference, but the Cavaliers drafted another point guard, Darius Garland.

It appears the plan is to start Sexton at the two and see how it goes, and maybe it'll go well. He was a 40.2 percent shooter from three last year, which is good. He was a 44 percent shooter from two, which is not very good. Maybe he should just become a catch-and-shoot option full-time, as 63.9 percent of his threes were assisted.

But is that all Sexton can be? He averaged 2.3 turnovers and 3.0 assists per game last night, which inspires zero confidence in me when it comes to projecting him as a lead ball-handler.

But can Sexton guard twos? Can he adapt to a new role? I don't know these answers, and I think the 2019-2020 season will be another year of adjustment for the second-year guard.

 

Kevin Knox (F, New York Knicks)

Player Impact Plus-Minus is a metric that takes luck-adjusted plus-minus data and some other factors and tries to boil things down to a single number that's able to tell us something about a player and be predictive of their future success, or lack of success.

Last year, Kevin Knox had the NBA's fourth-lowest PIPM, ahead of just Quinn Cook Abdel Nader, and Grayson Allen, who'll also be featured on this list. That's bad.

And Knox didn't just build up a bad number by being bad at one part of his game. He was a -2.7 on offense and a -2.3 on defense. He struggled in every phase of the game as a rookie. From a less analytical point of view, a number that matters is that he shot 37 percent from the field and turned the ball over at 10.1 percent rate.

New York added a ton of forwards this offseason. Knox is still the starter at the three, but it feels like a really tenuous starting role. Marcus Morris. Damyean Dotson. Reggie Bullock. This team has a lot of options for guys who can take Knox's minutes and give the Knicks more in those minutes. Maybe Knox takes enough shots to help fantasy owners out in the scoring department, but there's not much else I'm expecting from him.

 

Jerome Robinson (G, Los Angeles Clippers)

I forgot about Jerome Robinson.

After averaging over 20 points per game and shooting 40 percent from deep in his last year at Boston College, I was high on Robinson heading into his rookie year and then I just forgot all about him.

In 33 games, Robinson averaged 3.4 points on 40 percent shooting. He shot 31.6 percent from three. He scored in double figures once, a 10-point outing against the Warriors. He played at least 20 minutes just twice.

And then the Clippers added Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. There's not room to develop Jerome Robinson on a team that's gunning for a title. Based on my read of this team's backcourt, Robinson is maybe the fourth guard, though Maurice Harkless can slide to the two to take backup minutes, Paul George will spend at least a little time there, and Lou Williams is going to play so much that the Clippers will rarely need to insert Robinson into a game. I'd also guess that Rodney McGruder winds up earning Doc Rivers' trust more than Robinson does. All that spells another G-League heavy year for Robinson

 

Grayson Allen (G, Memphis Grizzlies)

It's not usually a good sign when your team trades you after one year in the NBA, though in Allen's case it makes sense since trading him as part of a package to the Grizzlies resulted in Utah getting Mike Conley.

Since becoming a member of the Grizzlies, the most notable thing that Allen's done has been earning a Summer League ejection. Couple that with a rookie year in which he shot 37.6 percent from the field, struggled as a three-point shooter, and only appeared in 38 games and you get the feeling that Grayson Allen's going down the "former Duke player who busts" route.

There was one encouraging sign, as Allen scored 40 points in Utah's last regular season game last season. He had seven rebounds and four assists in that one as well. He also took 30 shots and played 40 minutes, though, and that's not something that Allen can be counted on to do on a consistent basis.

Maybe a rebuilding Memphis team has a spot in the rotation for Allen, which would end up with him posting some statistical improvement. But he's likely nothing more than a fourth guard on an NBA team.

More Fantasy Basketball Analysis




More Recent Articles

 

Keep Stashing Running Backs the Right Way

Hells to the yeah, my fellow #AllBenchRB truthers. For those of you who don’t know what #AllBenchRB is, let me give you a short recap before I get to the goods. #AllBenchRB is a strategy I’ve coined where you fill your bench with, as the name implies, only RBs. Or at least as many running... Read More


Warning Signs: Saquon Barkley, David Johnson, Aaron Rodgers

Another week, another bout of crazy results. While survivor pools came to a screeching halt with the Saints and Colts losing, there were also some worrying situations that crept up for fantasy teams. This week brings many questions. What should we do with the Atlanta run game? The answer there is nothing. How do we... Read More


NFL Survivor Pool Picks (Week 11) - Targets and Avoids

Doomsday finally arrived. The Falcons' domination of the Saints eliminated the majority of remaining entrants in survivor pools. If you avoided the Saints, odds are you took the Colts in the late game. Of course, the Dolphins beat them as well. More upsets were found as the Titans beat the Chiefs, the Steelers manhandled the... Read More


Quarterback Leaderboards At Midseason - NFL Next Gen Stats

We've consumed our first "double-digit week" set of games. That means we've entered the final part of the season and, in fact, the fantasy football playoffs are closer than you may realize. There are just three more weeks to go until we hit Week 14 and celebrate our presence in the run for the chip,... Read More


Fantasy Football Disaster Recovery: Cooper Kupp

Welcome to Disaster Recovery, where each week I'll examine why your studs played like duds. This isn't a place to find out why you should have sat a player for somebody else on your bench. Disaster Recovery is here to examine the guys who you didn't think twice about starting and to help you decide if you should... Read More


The Tape Tells All - Christian Kirk Fantasy Analysis

Welcome to another edition of "The Tape Tells All," where I break down some film of an NFL's player performance and try to draw some fantasy football conclusions from that film. This week, I'm looking at Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Christian Kirk, who broke out in Week 10, catching three touchdowns. Kirk seems to have... Read More


Fantasy Football Risers and Fallers - Darius Slayton, Christian Kirk, Kareem Hunt

Whether due to their own play, the play of others, or injuries, players' stock increases and decreases on a weekly basis. Perhaps more than any other, the NFL is a league that experiences ups and downs at a rapid pace. With only 16 games, there’s little room for error and seemingly endless opportunities for improvement.... Read More


FAAB Bidding - Week 11 Waiver Wire Targets

Assisting our famous waiver wire pickups list, and our weekly waiver wire columns by position, this column focuses on suggested waiver wire bidding percentages for fantasy football owners in leagues using a Free Agent Acquisition Budget (FAAB). As a caveat, these prices do not by any means indicate how much these free agent players will... Read More


Week 11 Waiver Wire Pickups & Adds

It's crunch time, with precious few games left before the fantasy regular season ends. There aren't many new names emerging on the waiver wire at this juncture but the RB situations in Atlanta and Detroit bear watching, while the Jets passing game has shown signs of life. No, really. Each week, we will advise you... Read More


Deeper League Free Agent Pickups for Week 11

Rotoballers, if you're not active on the waiver wire this time of year, there are only two reasonable explanations: 1) You're sitting at 3-7 (or worse) and don't find it enjoyable to play spoiler to your league mates, or 2) You're 8-2 (or better) and have nothing but matchup-proof studs on your starting lineup and... Read More


Week 11 Defense (DEF) Streamers and Starts - 2019 Fantasy Tiers, Rankings

Below are RotoBaller's Week 11 defense tiers and rankings, or which defenses to stream, start and target off the waiver wire for Week 11 of the NFL and fantasy football season. In case you missed it, this is our seventh year now writing this weekly column. Our weekly tiered defense rankings are a guide to making waiver... Read More


Week 11 Kicker Streamers and Starts - 2019 Fantasy Tiers, Rankings

It's Week 11, and we're getting closer and closer to the fantasy football playoffs. The consistent options are getting more and more clear, especially at the kicking position. We're also going to start dealing with everyone's favorite factor, which is inclement weather, especially up north. The margin for error in these weeks is slim, and... Read More


Week 10 Surprises? We Must Overreact Immediately!

In Week 10, Christian Kirk, Darius Slayton, Tyreek Hill, and Michael Thomas all had beatable cornerback matchups and finished as the top-four wide receivers in PPR scoring. At running back, Derrick Henry exploited a poor Chiefs run defense and rumbled for 188 yards and two touchdowns, finishing as the No. 1 running back on the week. Ronald... Read More


The Cut List - Players on the Chopping Block (Week 11)

This is your weekly list of players to drop. I will do my best to limit this list to injured players and players you might consider holding. If you roster pure handcuffs or backups, obviously you can let them go at any time. The players on this list will, ideally, be guys that aren't clearly... Read More


Running Back Waiver Wire Pickups - Week 11

The regular season continues to advance at a relentless pace as we have now entered the planning process for Week 11. Some of you are in the favorable position of only needing slight modifications to rosters that are destined to enter the fantasy playoffs. But many of you are still searching for the most effective... Read More