NBA Fantasy Breakout Players for Next Season

As the regular season comes to a close, it’s time to start looking at NBA fantasy breakout players for 2021-22. Depending on what happens in the draft and free agency, the situations for these players could (and most likely will) change next year. Even with the uncertainty about rosters for next season, these players have enough talent to overcome any usage obstacles they could face. Here are some NBA fantasy breakout players for 2021-22.

NBA Fantasy Breakout Players for 2021-22 Season

Talen Horton-Tucker

A restricted free agent this summer, Talen Horton-Tucker has a chance to be on a new roster next year. Horton-Tucker has been mostly irrelevant this season as a bench player for the contending Los Angeles Lakers. However, he has flashed his upside when given a larger role. Over the past two games without LeBron James and Dennis Schroder, the second-year guard has averaged 18 points and 10 assists. If Horton-Tucker is on a different team this fall, he will more than likely be a starter or get starter minutes. If he is back with the Lakers next season, it will be important to see what their roster looks like, as he could have major competition for touches. With the potential that he has shown so far, it would not surprise me if the Lakers matched a big offer sheet for him this summer.

P.J. Washington

One player who has quietly started to breakout already is P.J. Washington of the Charlotte Hornets. While his overall numbers for the year aren’t that spectacular (13 points, 6.5 rebounds, 1.3 blocks), he has performed better as of late. The sophomore out of Kentucky has averaged 16.9 points, 8.1 rebounds, 2.1 steals, and 1.1 blocks over his last eight games. While his main position is power forward, he has played as a small-ball center this year due to the Hornets lacking talent at the position. If the Hornets don’t sign a center in free agency (Andre Drummond for example) then Washington has a clear path to great rebounding and block numbers. Even if they do get an upgrade at center, Washington is still a core part of this Charlotte team and will have no trouble putting up good stats.

Tyler Herro

After the incredible playoff run that Tyler Herro had in the bubble last summer, many thought that he would break out this season. However, he has only averaged 15.3 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 3.3 assists per game. These numbers are marginal improvements from his rookie year (13.5 points, 4.1 rebounds, 2.2 assists). The Heat arguably have one of the most stacked groups of guards in the NBA. These players include Goran Dragic, Kendrick Nunn, Duncan Robinson, and Victor Oladipo. Oladipo and Robinson are free agents while Dragic has a team option on his contract next year. Depending on who the Heat decide to keep will be telling about Herro’s outlook for next year. Even if the Heat bring the band back together, Herro should still improve going into year three.

R.J. Hampton

After not playing during most of his rookie season for the Denver Nuggets, R.J. Hampton has shown his upside since he was traded to the Orlando Magic. Over his past six games, he has averaged 15.7 points, 5 assists, and 7.2 rebounds. Hampton has shown elite athleticism and the ability to fill the boxscore on a Magic team that is lacking offense. There will be more competition for touches next year with Markelle Fultz and Jonathan Isaac back in the mix, but he has shown to be the most talented guard on the roster. Unless the ping pong balls fall the Magic’s way and allow them to get an elite guard prospect, chances are Hampton could be a key piece for the Magic next year.

Isaiah Stewart

One rookie that has gone under the radar this season is Isaiah Stewart of the Detroit Pistons. The 6’8 forward out of Washington was easily the best rebounder and shot-blocker of this year’s rookie class, as he averaged 6.7 rebounds and 1.3 blocks in only 21.4 minutes per game. The key to his success lies in his ability to usurp starter Mason Plumlee. What the organization decides to do next season is up in the air, but it’s a position battle to watch in training camp. One thing is for certain, Stewart is a core piece of the rebuild happening in Detroit and it’s only a matter of time before Stewart becomes the full-time starter for this team.

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