The NBA restart is here and over the next couple of months, there will be a few players that make themselves a lot of money due to their performance in the bubble. A few gems of you will. . In the 2016 playoffs, Bismack Biyombo earned himself a four-year $72 million deal from his performance. Although the Raptors only offered him deal after a 20-game playoff spell, he took advantage of his opportunity when Jonas Valanciunas got injured.
In the same year, Solomon Hill earned a four-year $48 million deal based on seven playoff games where he shot 57.9 percent from three and showed to be a competent on-ball defender in key moments.
Here are the four guys who could make a name for themselves during this restart, leading to big money in the future. Also, all four players are 24 years old or younger.
John Konchar (24) Shooting Guard, Memphis Grizzlies
My first gem. John Konchar gave the Grizzles some valuable minutes in February and March. Konchar spent most of this season in the G-League with the Hustle where he averaged 12.2 PPG, 8.3 RPG, 4.1 APG on 56.5 percent from the field, and 33.3 percent from three. The 6-6 wing is a stat sheet stuffer and can make shots. In his last nine games with the Grizzles per 36 Minutes, he averaged 11.9 points, 11.9 rebounds, 4.9 assists, 1.9 steals, with a 72.3 percent True Shooting percentage. If he plays well and shows the ability to make catch-and-shoot threes, it wouldn’t surprise me if a team gives him a hefty offer sheet.
Luguentz Dort (21) Forward, OKC Thunder
As many NBA teams know, it is very hard to find good wings that can make shots and defend at a high level. In 21 games with the Thunder, this gem, Dort showed to be a tough defender. The 21-year-old played well and showed he is a very capable slasher, but he earns his stripes on defense. He has uncanny energy and strength that makes him a potential nightmare as a perimeter defender. In late January, he was tasked with guarding one of the best scorers in the history of the NBA in James Harden. In eight minutes of being the primary defender, Harden shot 3-of-14 from the field and 1-of-11 from three. Keep your eyes on Dort in the bubble.
Chris Chiozza (24) Point Guard, Brooklyn Nets
Another gem. The Brooklyn Nets were decimated with injuries and players opting not to play in the NBA restart. So far, they have lost Kyrie Irving, Spencer Dinwiddie, DeAndre Jordan, and Wilson Chandler. I wouldn’t place any money on the Nets advancing far in the playoffs. However, this does give players like Chris Chiozza an opportunity. Chiozza is a tough defender, that can create opportunities for others, and can make tough shots in the clutch. The former Florida guard has a game similar to Fred VanFleet, and if he can continue to shoot well, I expect several teams to make calls or find a way to add him to their roster. In March, he shot 55.9 percent from the field (6.8 FGA) and 52.6 percent (3.8 3PA) from three.
Robert Williams (22) Forward, Boston Celtics
The Celtics only have one player over 6-9 (Enes Kanter) that has played more than 150 minutes, so expect Robert Williams to play a significant role if healthy in Orlando. The 2018 first-round pick when healthy, provides valuable, much-needed minutes in the frontcourt for Brad Stevens. Williams is an elite athlete and it will be fun to see in the pick-and-roll with Kemba Walker and others. The 6-8 big man is a very underrated passer than can be used in stretches to create offense with off-the-ball cutters. The Celtics are in the top six in the NBA in blocks per game (5.6), and opponent points in the paint per game (43.2) and Williams is a big part of that. His ability to move his feet defensively or use his 7-5 wingspan to deter guards from attempting shots at the rim is something to admire. If Williams can stay on the floor, he will be a popular name you will hear during the restart