He didn’t play much at the beginning of the season, but Justin Anderson’s competitiveness showed towards the end stretch of the year.
3.7 PPG 2.6 RPG 0.7 APG
In the Hawks’ three-team trade to send Dennis Schroder to the Thunder, they received Justin Anderson from the Sixers. Anderson was known as a defensive minded guy, and with Pierce coming in as a defense first coach it was perfect.
To make things even bitter sweet, Pierce and Anderson were both coming from the Sixers, so they were already familiar with each other.
Anderson’s season didn’t start immediately as he missed the first 16 games of the season with a left leg injury. He didn’t perform well to start, and it looked like he was still trying to get a hang of the system. His shot also wasn’t falling, which made his minutes decrease.
Ultimately, Anderson racked up some DNPs, and sometimes was only called upon when a player was in foul trouble.
During the end of the season, Anderson started to find his groove. Defensively he was great, which kept him on the court most of the time.
Offensively he began to knock down shots on the perimeter and get into the paint as well. One of his best attributes to the team was his hustle on the court. His best game of the season was against the Bucks, where he scored 24 points and grabbed 12 rebounds.
If Anderson is back form next season, expect him to jump out the gate with a bigger role than this year. He showed signs of improvement at the end of the season, and can build off of that in the offseason.
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