Is This Brooks Breakout Year?

Mar 21, 2012; Newark, NJ, USA; New Jersey Nets guard MarShon Brooks (9) brings the ball up court during the second half against the Washington Wizards at the Prudential Center. Washington Wizards defeat the New Jersey Nets 108-89. Mandatory Credit: Jim O'Connor-US PRESSWIRE

Sekou Smith writes about the five players he believes are on the verge of a breakout year. The list is headed by Goran Dragic, but MarShon Brooks is right there with him as "budding stars that rise to the occasion." Brooks' goal this season is Sixth Man of the Year and Smith suggests it's possible, comparing him to James Harden..

Brooks will have the benefit of playing in the shadow of much bigger stars -- All-Stars Deron Williams, Joe Johnson in the backcourt alone -- while also having a clearly defined role as the Nets’ sixth man. He could be the Eastern Conference’s version of James Harden a sub capable of taking games over with his scoring when called upon.

The Nets' Ben Couch also signals Brooks' emergence with a 4,000-word feature on the fan favorite, noting he is "a rookie no longer" and ready for Brooklyn after a journey that took him up and down the East Coast.

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