Guys, this is it. WE HAVE MADE TO THE TOP 10 PLAYERS OF THE NBA! Remember, this my personal opinion of who are the best players in the NBA right now. So for one last time, let’s continue the list.
10 Damian Lillard—Portland—PG: Damian Lillard is a bad dude. He has as much confidence as any player in the league and probably has the most swag in the league. While the Blazers had a disappointing year last year, Lillard had the best year of his career. By averaging 27 points, 5 rebounds, and 6 assists, while shooting great percentages; Lillard became a top 10 player. If the Blazers supporting cast can step up, then Portland could be a dangerous team in the West.
9 Kyrie Irving—Boston—PG: Fireworks finally happened in Boston and it turned out to surprisingly be Kyrie Irving. After requesting a trade from Cleveland, Kyrie has a ton of pressure going into this season. No one doubts his talent as he scored a career high 25 points per game and nearly joined the 50%-40%-90% club last year alone. But now he’s the leader on his own team. Can he handle that pressure and can he lead his own team? That will be the question everyone will be asking Kyrie.
8 Karl-Anthony Towns—Minnesota—C: This is the ranking I am going to the most shit for but I don’t care; Karl-Anthony Towns is this good. In his 2nd year in the league, Towns averaged 25 points, 12 rebounds, and a block and a half a game and he couldn’t even legally drink last year. Think about that for a sec. I also didn’t mention that he shot great percentages all from the floor, the 3, and from the line. Now that he’s being paired with another star in Jimmy Butler, Towns will now not have to carry the team like he did last year. And did I mention he’s 21 years old? The potential is unlimited for Towns to the point that I honestly feel he could take the torch from LeBron as the face of the NBA. No pressure Karl.
7 James Harden—Houston—SG/PG: While James Harden has always been an elite scorer, he also became an elite passer last year. When Harden took over the point guard duties, he truly was able to run an explosive offense. While his points per game stayed at 29, his assists jumped up from 7 to 11 a game. In terms of strictly being an offensive player, there may be no one better than Harden. But the issue has been and continues to be his atrocious defense. If he can then to give a shit on defense, then he could be in the discussion for the best player in the league.
6 Stephen Curry—Golden State—PG: Other than getting uninvited (even though he wasn’t going) to the White House, Steph Curry is pretty good at basketball. He is without a doubt the best shooter in basketball and maybe of all-time. He never shot below 40% from 3 and has a career percentage of 44%, that’s unreal. Considering that Curry is the best shooter in basketball, a great passer, and can score anywhere on the court; it’s easy to see why he’s in the conversation for best player in the league. He only needs to work on his one on one defense.
5 Kawhi Leonard—San Antonio—SF: Kawhi Leonard is not your typical superstar. He’s humble and quiet and still a complete monster. In my opinion (other than LeBron), Kawhi is the most complete player in basketball. He just doesn’t have a weakness. He scores in a variety of ways and is one of the 5 best defenders in basketball. Did I mention he has muscles on muscles? No, well Kawhi is also ripped. Not only is he an MVP favorite, he’ll be in the running for Defensive Player of the Year as well.
4 Anthony Davis—New Orleans—PF: Let’s put this into perspective, I am 24 year old recent college graduate looking for his first real job. Anthony Davis is 4 days older than me. To me no one has more value in the NBA right now than Davis because how good he is and how young he is (maybe Towns). Davis is a fantastic scorer, an amazing rebounder, an elite shot blocker, and has a uni-brow. Davis does need to work on his 3 and he will get there because he’s got great form. When that happens, look out.
3 Russell Westbrook—Oklahoma City—PG: When you win the MVP and average the 1st triple-double in 50 years, it’s safe to say Westbrook is worthy of this ranking. There may not be a player in the history of basketball that mixes his crazy intensity with his unbelievable athleticism like Westbrook. He’s unrelenting and that’s what makes him great. If there’s anything that I could critique about Westbrook, it’s that he should try to get his percentages up. But that’s something very minor.
2 Kevin Durant—Golden State—SF/PF: It’s safe to say that Kevin Durant’s decision to go to Golden State was the right one. Despite critics (like me) ripping him for going to Golden State, he was able to overcome that and win his 1st championship with the Finals MVP. Other than that, you guys already know the deal about Durant. He is the best offensive player in basketball and is completely ungradable. He stands at 6’11”, 240 pounds, and plays like a guard. There really isn’t anything that he can’t on a basketball court and he’s in the conversation for best player in the league. But he’s not there yet.
1 LeBron James—Cleveland—SF/PF: Was there really any doubt? Despite turning 33 this year and despite entering his 15th year in the NBA, LeBron still reigns supreme in the NBA. At 6’8” and 250 pounds of pure muscle, LeBron can play anywhere on the court, any position on the court, and doesn’t have a weakness. Just think about this, he shot 55% from the floor last year as a perimeter player. That’s just insane. To me, no one is going to catch LeBron James as the best player in basketball. One day, he will play like a normal human being and he’ll fall back to the rest of the pack of great NBA players. But todays not that day and LeBron, once again remains the best player in the world.
Written By: Steven Santoro (SVS_1993)