Today’s NBA revolves around it’s superstars. It’s no secret that you need an elite superstar to win championships and stay relevant. Not every team has the luxury of having an elite player on their team since they are so hard to come by. Here’s a list of players that aren’t superstars that will take their game to the next level this year.
Mike Conley Jr. Memphis Grizzlies – Mike Conley is a name you don’t hear that often. Many people forget he was drafted fourth behind Greg Oden, Kevin Durant, and Al Horford back in 2007. Now entering his sixth year in the league at 26 years old he will run the show for an established Grizzlies team this year. They have had the same starting five for a couple years now so the chemistry should be there. Conley is ready to break out and lead the Grizz past the first round this year. Don’t be surprised if Conley averages 15 and 7 this year.
DeMarcus Cousins Sacramento Kings – The Kings are very young and learning the game together but they can’t go anywhere without Cousins. Hopefully he has matured and grown up and has learned that basketball is a full-time career and that he can’t act like a baby anymore. He is only 22 years old but he played last year like he was a 10 year vet. Cousins can put up elite big man numbers and with the Kings getting better, defenses will have to worry about the players around him as well. Cousins should have a big year in only his 3rd season.
DeMar DeRozan Toronto Raptors – Now entering his fourth year, DeRozan needs to justify his Top 10 draft selection and break out. He is still very young but I believe he will break out this year. He can get to the rim with ease and is an amazing dunker. I think DeMar puts it all together this year.
Danilo Gallinari Denver Nuggets – Gallo came into the league when he was 19 and was thrown right into the New York spotlight. Now in Denver he has matured and learned both the NBA and American culture. The Nuggets have a lot of great pieces and I think he will shine this year as the Nuggets have built a great time after Carmelo Anthony left.
Jrue Holiday Philadelphia 76ers – The 76ers a very fast and young team. Holiday is becoming a great under the radar point guard. He might not have the star power as all the other point guards in the league, but Jrue can play with them all. Look for him to break out this year as the 76ers make noise in the Eastern Conference.