Countdown: Best Active Player to Wear Each Jersey Number (26-30)

The previous edition of this countdown was certainly filled with star power. Lebron James, Ben Simmons, and Joel Embiid headlined the numbers 21-25. This edition is quite less impressive. You will see a few impressive names here, but also a few guys you might not even know who they are. Let’s get into it.

#26: Kyle Korver

Kyle Korver plays for the Lebron-less Cavaliers who everybody is doubting will make any noise next season. Korver has had a more than impressive career playing now at the ripe age of 37. Being one of the best three-point shooters of all time contributes to why he is still relevant. Last season, he averaged 9.2ppg, 2.3rpg, and 1.2apg. None of those numbers will stand out, but his impact was certainly noticed in Cleveland. His 3pt percentage last season was 44%, incredibly efficient. Next year, Cleveland will obviously take a giant drop off, but I wouldn’t count them out. They won’t win a championship, but a 7th or 8th seed in the playoffs is possible. Unless they just decide to go full tank mode.

Honorable Mentions: None

#27: Rudy Gobert

Rudy Gobert just won the 2017-18 Defensive Player of the Year award. He’s an absolute stud in Utah as their big man. Donovan Mitchell and Gobert make for an insanely good 1-2 punch for the young squad. Gobert averaged 2.3 blocks per game last season, a huge reason he was awarded as the best defensive player in the league. He also averaged 13.5ppg, 10.7rpg, and 1.4apg. The 7’1” center’s squad should be in the middle of the Western Conference playoffs next season. The Jazz got the 5th seed last season, but as I’ve mentioned before, the 3-8 seeds were all separated by 2 games. They defeated the Thunder in the first round of the playoffs and I believe they would defeat them again next season. More than likely, the Jazz season will end in the second-round next season again to either the Warriors, Rockets, or Lakers.

Honorable Mentions: Jamal Murray (16.7ppg, 3.7rpg, 3.4apg) and Jusuf Nurkic (14.3ppg, 9rpg, 1.8apg)

#28: Ian Mahinmi

This is embarrassing as Mahinmi is not a very good player. He plays for the Washington Wizards who always begin a season with hope, but it ends up fizzling out by playoff time. Mahinmi’s averages were 4.8ppg, 4.1rpg, 0.7apg. The Wizards will be in the middle of the Eastern Conference playoffs next season and lose in the first or second round depending on their seeding. They could be the 4th best team in the Eastern Conference behind Boston, Toronto, and Philadelphia. But I also have them being a little bit worse than the Milwaukee Bucks.

Honorable Mentions: None (I know, YIKES)

#29: None

Yea if it weren’t for who’s at #30, this edition of the countdown would be pretty pointless.

#30: Stephen Curry

This is one of those no-brainers that can’t be debated. Curry is a top 2 shooter of all time. Honestly, he’s probably 1, but Ray Allen was such a polarizing shooter in this game as well. Stephen Curry plays for the NBA Champion Warriors. Last season, he averaged 26.4ppg, 5.1rpg, and 6.1apg. Evidently, Curry can do much more than shoot. His passing is incredible, and he can swerve through the lane and get to the basket almost better than anyone else in the league. Only Kyrie has the edge over him regarding that. Next season, the Warriors have an easy pass to the Finals. They’re already regarded as maybe the best team of all time and then they go and sign the best center in the league this summer, Demarcus Cousins. However, after this coming season, the Warriors may seem many changes coming to their core with Thompson or Green potentially departing.

Honorable Mentions: Julius Randle (16.1ppg, 8rpg, 2.6apg) and Troy Daniels (8.9ppg, 1.6rpg, 0.6apg)

This edition of the countdown was a struggle to get through. Next edition, however, could maybe have as much star power as 21-25. Huge names coming up next week. Stay Tuned.

-Brandon Black ()

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