Sure the little 1 1/2year old spikes and 2points will mature as there first set of antlers is not the end of their story...but at 2 1/2-3 1/2 you will know if they have potental or not
I think that is the problem in this area. I saw four bucks yesterday afternoon. One spike, one little six, one little eight, and a pretty good deer that was too smart to let me get a real good look at him. The six and eight were almost certainly 1 1/2 years old. At that point you dont' know what they might be in another year or two. A lot of, if not most, hunters would have shot these little bucks. The vast majority of bucks are killed before they are two years old.
Some of the guys I used to hunt with when asked not to kill young bucks said, by god if it had hair on it they were going to shoot it. I talked to one of the guys about 10 years later and asked him how the hunting was. He said you couldn't find a good buck over there because everybody was shooting them before they got grown. LOL