After a decent debut season for the Sacramento Kings where he was selected to the All-Rookie First Team, Marvin Bagley III disappointed in year two. Bagley only appeared in 13 games for the Kings while dealing with a foot injury.
Now, exasperated by the success of Trae Young, Jaren Jackson Jr., Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Michael Porter Jr., Devonte Graham, Mitchell Robinson, and most notably Luka Doncic, who were all selected after him, Bagley is the new poster child for a draft bust.
But many fans and media members are still holding out hope for the former No. 2 overall pick. On the Locked On Kings Podcast, host Matt George spoke at length about why he believes Bagley can have a bounce back year and win the NBA’s Most Improved Player.
Matt George: When we think of the end of the 2018-19 Sacramento Kings regular season, we think of disappointment, don’t we? Missed opportunity with the Sacramento Kings going from a red hot team out of the gate, playing fast pace and catching a league by surprise, to crashing down back to earth and once again falling out of the playoff race. What we don’t remember about the end of that season, particularly the month of February and March, is just how good then Sacramento Kings rookie Marvin Bagley was.
I’ve said it a couple times here on the Locked On Kings podcast. I’ve said it on social media, but I haven’t said it with enough conviction. So here you go: Marvin Bagley will remain healthy and will win the 2021 NBA Most Improved Player Award, and I’ll tell you why.
I do believe truly, that Marvin Bagley is as of right now, a front runner to win the Most Improved Player Award for 2021 simply because… based off of what we’ve already seen from the man statistically, and a lot of these awards are judged off of statistics. From what we’ve already seen from Marvin Bagley, with more playing time, and with just a clean record of health, Marvin Bagley can dominate in this league. It may take some time for that to translate to wins for the Sacramento Kings, but don’t be surprised when, not if, when Marvin Bagley is able to stay healthy next season and fills up the box score very, very quickly.
Most Improved Player of the Year candidates are usually the hardest to predict, so it might not be so farfetched to believe Marvin Bagley III will bounce back and prove why he was taken second overall.