Many had Jordan Poole pegged as a betting favourite for Most Improved Player earlier than the 2021-22 NBA season had even began. Quick ahead to the top of the common season, and Poole hasn’t even been nominated for the award.
As an alternative, three gamers who’re already stars in their very own proper have gotten the nod over Poole. And that’s tremendous, however historically the MIP award has gone to position gamers who develop into key items on their staff.
If a “star” participant have been to obtain the award, they must bounce from common to clear megastar standing.
The G-League Stint That Began It All
Poole couldn’t pull that off.
As an alternative, he grew to become a precious rotation piece for the Golden State Warriors this season and is now part of the most recent iteration of their “death lineup,” alongside Curry, Thompson, Draymond, and Andrew Wiggins.
The playoffs don’t depend for regular-season awards, however Poole’s common season was nonetheless unbelievable. As an alternative of shining in demise lineups, he cameoed alongside Steph Curry for many of the common season.
Poole’s manufacturing was very important to the Warriors’ success early within the season after they have been lacking Klay Thompson after which grew to become very important once more when Curry went out with harm. Poole needed to change off enjoying alongside both Splash Brother, serving completely different roles for regardless of the Warriors wanted on a given night time.
2021-22 Jordan Poole was a totally completely different participant from years previous.
His enchancment is basically credited to his stint within the G-League in February 2021. Enjoying alongside Jeremy Lin for the Santa Cruz Warriors, Poole was capable of get extra minutes on the courtroom and vastly develop his recreation.
Jordan Poole had by no means scored 25 factors in a recreation earlier than going to the G-League. Since his March 1st, 2021 return, Poole has scored at the least 25 factors in 22 video games.
In contrast, Poole had had 24 video games during which he scored 5 or fewer factors. He even posted zero factors in a recreation 9 instances. After the G-League, Poole scored lower than 5 factors simply as soon as, in a recreation the place he scored precisely zero factors.
With elevated consideration from trainers and media members alike, Poole confirmed vital enchancment when he got here again to the Warriors in March. Instantly, betting odds put him the favourite to win this yr’s MIP.
Eyebrow-Elevating Jordan Poole Stats
Saying “Jordan Poole’s stats took a leap” is kind of an understatement. Poole fully remodeled his recreation whereas enjoying within the G-League. A lot in order that Poole’s stats earlier than and after February 2021 starkly distinction each other.
We compiled Poole’s profession stats earlier than and after his February 2021 G-League run.
Poole elevated his quantity and scoring effectivity, improved as a playmaker, and solely averaged yet one more turnover earlier than and after enjoying within the G-League.
Take a look at his stats earlier than January thirty first, 2021. Poole wasn’t even an honest bench participant on the time. He’s now fully rotated his profession trajectory and enjoying a small half in a bigger system, translating to extra wins.
Listed below are Jordan Poole’s regular-season stats from his complete profession.
His stats give a transparent image of the advance Poole has made year-over-year. In addition they present his elevated position within the 2021-22 season.
The Warriors wanted Poole extra this season than ever, and he got here by way of. Beginning a career-high 51 video games, Poole performed a significant half within the Warriors’ holding onto the primary seed within the West till Stephen Curry slumped.
His contribution amounted to the Warriors grabbing the quantity three seed within the West. He went from full scrub to a valued contributor. And he was capable of steal the limelight on a staff in the course of a dynasty, with three All-Star caliber gamers.
Jordan Poole must be this yr’s Most Improved Player and would be the awards’ largest snub this yr.