The Toronto Raptors' Pascal Siakam should be the NBA's Most Improved Player for the 2018-2019 season. Yes, I know it's early. Yes, I know he plays for the Raptors and for whatever reason Raptors players can't win any awards. I also don't care.
The Cameroonian big man is averaging 14.8 points and 6.4 boards per game, while shooting career highs from both the field (70.2%) and deep (34.9%). All this while being just a third-year NBA player and having started playing basketball when he was 17 years-old!
Siakam makes up for his lack of experience with his electric athleticism and god-given size and length. His signature spin move is quickly becoming a focus point of the Raptors' section of NBA Twitter, and his quickly improving three-point stroke is extremely encouraging.
Pascal's name is now being tossed around by many fans and media members as the third member of the Raptors' "Big Three". Kyle Lowry, (multiple-time All-Star) Kawhi Leonard, (MVP candidate, Finals MVP and two-time DPOY) and Pascal Siakam. He has no personal achievements of note, but those will come with time, and probably sooner than you think.
As a member of the starting unit now, Siakam is ineligible for the Sixth Man award, but don't be surprised if he picks up an All-Star appearance and, as Raptors fans have been clamorously lobbying for, the MIP award.
Keep in mind that a lot of people are making a claim for this award, a few of them even having better individual seasons for their respective teams. Siakam is undoubtedly more valuable to a winning, talented team than any one of those other guys.
Keep an eye out for Pascal Siakam come June; he could very well be receiving the MIP award on Awards Night.