Future Watch: Mikal Bridges Basketball Cards, Phoenix Suns

Future Watch: Mikal Bridges Basketball Cards, Phoenix SunsMikal Bridges is a Philadelphia kid who lived the dream in college, helping to lead Villanova back to national glory in the form of two national championships – and he briefly appeared to be following a similar pro journey with his hometown 76ers. But the twists and turns in Bridges’ journey have instead led him to prominence on another title contender, the Phoenix Suns.

On the heels of a high school career dotted with various regional awards, Bridges joined a Villanova squad on the cusp of greatness. The Wildcats won national championships in 2016 and 2018 as their leading players like Bridges broadened their games. In particular, Bridges became much more proficient defensively, augmenting his strong midrange scoring with three-point range as well.

With Bridges’ mother employed as an executive for the 76ers holding company, the next chapter of his budding career seemed written in the stars when Philadelphia selected him with the 10th pick in the 2018 NBA Draft. But appearances were deceiving, as the Sixers quickly flipped their new small forward to the Suns in a draft-day deal.

Bridges’ new franchise was not operating at a high level at the time of his arrival – consequently, though, opportunities for advancement in the rotation were quickly available. A promising rookie campaign was highlighted by a 20-game streak of notching at least one steal in a game – the first time that had been accomplished by a freshman since Bridges’ legendary future teammate Chris Paul put it together in 2005-06. Bridges also stood alone among his teammates by being the only one to play all 82 games in his first season.

The 2019-20 season represented progress for Bridges, advancing from his first run in field goal percentage, three-point percentage, free throw percentage, rebounds, blocks and points. While that season is best remembered in Phoenix for the incredible run in the Orlando bubble at the end, Bridges put together breakthrough performances even before the league’s hiatus, most notably, 21 points and ten rebounds on March 8, 2020.

Bridges continued his progress at Disney, compiling a +71 in the eight games and laying the groundwork for his 2020-21 season. With new career highs in field goal percentage (.526), three-point percentage (.405), rebounds (4.4), assists (2.2), blocks (0.9) and points (13.1), Bridges is helping new teammate Paul to raise the Suns to the level of a legitimate contender as he further builds his all-around game and adds to his reputation as a consummate winner.

Mikal Bridges is well on his way to proving that he can thrive at the highest levels in the NBA with the right organizational support around him. Collectors who picked up his rookies in 2018-19 now have cards from late season 2020-21 products to release, including:

2020-21 Panini NBA Basketball Cards Product List

Future Watch: Mikal Bridges Basketball Cards, Phoenix Suns – Stats

Per Game Table
2018-19 22 PHO NBA SF 82 56 29.5 3.0 6.9 .430 1.3 3.8 .335 1.7 3.0 .548 .523 1.2 1.4 .805 0.7 2.5 3.2 2.1 1.6 0.5 0.9 2.5 8.3
2019-20 23 PHO NBA SF 73 32 28.0 3.4 6.6 .510 1.0 2.7 .361 2.4 4.0 .610 .583 1.4 1.7 .844 0.9 3.1 4.0 1.8 1.4 0.6 1.0 2.2 9.1
2020-21 24 PHO NBA SF 60 60 32.5 4.9 9.3 .525 1.7 4.4 .398 3.2 5.0 .636 .618 1.5 1.8 .822 1.1 3.3 4.4 2.2 0.9 0.9 0.8 1.6 13.0
Career NBA 215 148 29.8 3.6 7.5 .487 1.3 3.6 .363 2.3 3.9 .601 .574 1.3 1.6 .824 0.9 2.9 3.8 2.0 1.3 0.6 0.9 2.1 9.9
Provided by Basketball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 4/26/2021.

Future Watch: Mikal Bridges Basketball Cards, Phoenix Suns – Other Resources

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Rick Morris