Miles Bridges improved upon his overall game during the 2019-2020 season. Can his third year see continued growth for the Charlotte Hornets?
With the entire world seemingly on hold for the foreseeable future, all fans can do is bide their time waiting for sports to return. Until then, speculation and discussing potential future happenings is the bulk of what most of us can really do. So, many of us here have started looking toward next season and what that holds for the Charlotte Hornets and their players. This includes their second-year forward out of Michigan State, Miles Bridges.
In his two-ish years in the Queen City, Bridges has played well, most notably throwing down some nasty dunks here and there. He’s been a good all-around offensive player, though, and this season saw his scoring nearly double from what it was last year. His total rebounds went up by almost half, but at just under six a game, you’d like to see more from a guy his size. Granted, he’s playing at the three-spot most of the time, so that does factor into it.
His shooting went down just a bit, but with more minutes, that can happen. His free-throw percentage ticked a bit higher, though, which is great, but with only two attempts per game, that’s not helping much. If he could further develop a slasher mentality and attack the basket, the Hornets could benefit from his apparent improvement at the line.
One area that desperately needs improvement, though, is his defense. In terms of defensive rating, Miles gives up the most points per 100 possessions on the team. The defense has been a problem all around for the Hornets this season, so that shouldn’t surprise anyone. Having just turned 22, Miles is still young and with some of the best players in the league being matched up at his position, you’re going to see a second-year guy struggle at times.
So, can we expect a further uptick in production next year? We certainly hope so because for a guy who takes up the third-most minutes on the team per night, you’d hope for more than 13 points a game. Every player is different, though, and some take time to find their game. He definitely has the talent to do so and with his size and frame, I don’t see why he couldn’t average a double-double at some point.
Adjusting to the NBA game can be difficult for young guys and being on a team that has struggled over the past few years makes it even harder. Next season could be Miles’ breakout year and Charlotte definitely needs it. Having a reliable third player to lean on is nice, but perhaps he could take the forefront and become the unquestioned leader for this young squad. In any case, here’s hoping that next season, Miles Bridges takes the NBA by storm.