BasketballNews.com believes Suns forward Mikal Bridges is a good dark horse bet for DPOY.
Phoenix Suns forward Mikal Bridges has elevated his game on the defensive side of the court, emerging as one of the few players in the NBA who is capable of not only playing each game of the daunting 82-game schedule but also defend at a high level night in and night out.
Last year saw Bridges get a All-NBA first team nod while finishing as a finalist for the league’s Defensive Player of the Year award.
Will he be able to take home those honors this year?
BasketballNews.com believes Bridges is the perfect dark horse candidate to place your bets on to win the award:
Mikal Bridges Dark Horse Candidate for DPOY”Last season’s runner-up behind Marcus Smart checks in as this year’s dark horse prediction. Finally, the NBA began to show respect to perimeter defenders with Smart and Bridges battling atop the DPOY leaderboard. Look for this trend to continue and maybe even become normalized. While Bridges’ status in Phoenix might remain in limbo right now due to the Suns’ ongoing flirtation to secure Kevin Durant, there’s no denying he’s one of the best all-around wing defenders. He’s able to lock up practically any scorer archetype,” said Sidery.
“Expect to see a highly-motivated Bridges entering his fifth season, one that will put even more pressure on him to become a more well-rounded pillar in the Suns’ success. While Bridges won’t put up gaudy statistics, the eye test proved consistently there’s not many defenders on the same tier as the 2018 No. 10 overall pick.
“Assuming Phoenix stays near the top of the Western Conference hierarchy, projected at this point to run back most of their league-best rotation, Bridges’ DPOY argument is already written. If all goes to plan, Bridges will be a finalist and potentially bring the award to the Valley this time around.”
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