5 Sleeper sophomore breakout candidates for the 2023-24 NBA season

PORTLAND, OREGON - JANUARY 30 (Photo by Soobum Im/Getty Images)
PORTLAND, OREGON - JANUARY 30 (Photo by Soobum Im/Getty Images) /
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DALLAS, TEXAS – MARCH 22 (Photo by Tim Heitman/Getty Images)

NBA sophomore breakout candidate – Jaden Hardy, Dallas Mavericks

Heading into the upcoming season, the two Dallas Mavericks that everyone has their eyes on are Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving, and understandably so. They are two of the most dynamic offensive players in the business, and any success the team will see starts with them. Yet they cannot do it all alone, and one player who could help is second-year player Jaden Hardy.

The youngster showed some potential during his rookie year, but he didn’t play a significant role. That should change in year two, as he can help this team primarily with his scoring. Hardy has a knack for putting the ball in the hoop from anywhere on the floor. Last year, he put up 8.8 points per game while shooting 43.8 percent from the floor and 40.4 percent from deep in limited time.

Having a scoring threat like that off the bench could help tremendously when Irving or Doncic are catching their breath. If the Mavericks can indeed get meaningful production out of the 2022 second-round selection, it would only bolster their chances of bouncing back from last year’s ugly close. It’ll be interesting to see if Hardy can take the leap.

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