Spruce Derden-USA TODAY Sports
Fueled by untapped potential and explosive athleticism, Eric Bledsoe was one of the most highly coveted trade assets throughout the 2012-13 campaign.
In a three-way deal that eventually sent Jared Dudley and J.J. Redick to the Los Angeles Clippers in exchange for Bledsoe, the Phoenix Suns acquired the 23-year-old combo guard on the final year of his rookie contract.
After playing a role in support of Chris Paul for the Clippers, Bledsoe now has an opportunity for extended minutes with the Suns. Expect the player who averaged 14.9 points, 5.2 rebounds and 5.4 assists per-36 minutes last season to take full advantage of his new environment.
While competing for the Most Improved Award specifically, Bledsoe's production will be measured against his three-year NBA career averages of 6.7 points, 3.0 assists and 2.6 rebounds per game.
Playing upwards of 30 minutes per night for the Suns moving forward, however, Bledsoe has a legitimate opportunity to double his 2012-13 stat line of 8.5, 3.1 and 3.0, respectively.
Beyond simply working to establish himself as an NBA starter in 2013-14, Bledsoe will also be playing for a new contract. If he maxes out his production alongside Goran Dragic at somewhere around 16.5 points, five assists and five rebounds (numbers it appears he's capable of), Bledsoe will run away with the MIP award.
In addition to securing that honor, he will also be on his way to cashing in big on a lucrative contract in free agency.