Countdown: Best Active Player to Wear Each Jersey Number (6-10)
Last week we began this offseason countdown for the best players wearing each number with numbers 0 through 5. Today, we’ll be going through the best players who are currently wearing the jersey numbers 6 through 10. Let’s not waste any time and let’s get into it.
#6: Kristaps Porzingis
5 years ago, this is without a doubt going to Lebron James. Back in the “Heatles” days, Lebron was a monster rocking that 6 on his back. However, since leaving Miami Lebron has gone back to wearing 23. There are some solid guys currently wearing 6, but Porzingis is by far the best one. He was only able to play a little more than half the season last year, but in those 48 games averaged 22.7ppg, 6.6rpg, and 2.4bpg. The Knicks are a team that looks like it has some upside with Porzingis being only 23 and the drafting of Kevin Knox. Rumors have the Knicks as favorites to get Kyrie next season as well, so we’ll have to see how that turns out. At the very least, with Porzingis on this team, the Knicks have hope.
Honorable Mentions: DeAndre Jordan (12ppg, 15.2rpg, 1.5apg) and Eric Bledsoe (17.8ppg, 3.9rpg, 5.1apg)
#7: Kyle Lowry
Carmelo Anthony was once a great player who would easily get this honor, but he’s fallen off a cliff. At least fallen off a cliff from OKC, Houston could be a different story. As of right now, Kyle Lowry is the best player in the league wearing number 7. Lowry and Derozan led the Raptors to the first seed in the Eastern Conference a season ago. In that season, Lowry averaged 16.2ppg, 5.6rpg, and 6.9apg. Unfortunately, the Raptors were swept in the second round by Lebron and the Cavs. Luckily for Toronto, Lebron moved out west and they replaced Derozan with a top 5 player in Kawhi Leonard. Next season should be a fun one to watch with Toronto, Boston, and Philly all expecting to have that top seed.
Honorable Mentions: Goran Dragic (17.3ppg, 4.1rpg, 4.8apg) and Jaylen Brown (14.5ppg, 4.9rpg, 1.6apg)
#8: Zach Lavine
The number 8 was much less talented than I expected for a single digit number. Zach Lavine is a tremendous young player, I just wouldn’t expect him to be this top guy. Lavine only played 24 games for the Bulls last season and in those games averaged 16.7ppg, 3.9rpg, and 3 apg. Solid stats, but nothing stands out. Lavine is very athletic with a solid ability to hit his shots as well. The Bulls seem to be in the midst of a long rebuild, but have great upside with their young rotation of Kris Dunn, Lavine, Jabari Parker, Lauri Markkanen, and Wendell Carter JR. In a few years, this team might have what it takes to make a nice playoff run in the Eastern Conference.
Honorable Mentions: Spencer Dinwiddie (12.6ppg, 3.2rpg, 6.6apg) and Danilo Gallinari (15.3ppg, 4.8rpg, 2apg)
#9: Nikola Vucevic
Nikola Vucevic isn’t a name that holds a whole lot of star power, but he’s actually a really good player. He’s the Magic big man and that could be a big reason he gets no attention as a great player. Last season Vucevic averaged 16.5ppg, 9.2rpg, and 3.4apg. Orlando has been a lousy team ever since Dwight Howard left them. However, the recently drafted big man Mo Bamba who they can slot next to Vucevic and create the newest NBA twin towers. The Magic have a huge team and if Mo Bamba pans out to be a good player, they’ll likely have to make some trades. Some candidates who could be traded are Vucevic, Aaron Gordon, or Jonathan Isaac. Those trades would need to be done to acquire wing players who can shoot well. If all that happens, the Magic might have some hope soon.
Honorable Mentions: Dario Saric (14.6ppg, 6.7rpg, 2.6apg) and Rajon Rondo (8.3ppg, 4rpg, 8.2apg)
#10: Demar Derozan
This was a pretty easy choice since Derozan is a complete stud. He was just traded to the Spurs for Kawhi Leonard. I like his fit in San Antonio with Popovich a ton. Last season in Toronto, he Derozan averaged 23ppg, 3.9rpg, and 5.2apg. With the Raptors, he had to share a lot of the scoring load with Lowry (#7 on our list today). It is very likely that in San Antonio, he’ll be the top scoring option. I expect the Spurs to be anywhere from 4-6 in the Western Conference next season. I’d love to see a Spurs-Lakers first round matchup to reunite playoff rivals Lebron and Derozan once again.
Honorable Mentions: Evan Fournier (17.8ppg, 3.2rpg, 2.9apg) and Eric Gordon (18ppg, 2.5rpg, 2.2apg)
Stay Tuned for 11-15
Brandon Black(Follow @bhblack02)