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Predicting NBA's Top 100 Players for 2023

Jul 02, 2023

If you've been on the B/R app this week, you've seen our Top 30 guards, wings and bigs predictions for the 2023-24 NBA season.

If you're here with us now, you've officially made it to the grand finale.

We're revealing our top 100 NBA player predictions for the new season after a vast voting process.

How did we do it? Scroll ahead for a quick look at our method.

*Check out the final slide for every Top-100 NBA Player By Team.

Hit the comments to let us know what we got right and which players will prove us wrong.

Some text was previously published in our Top Guards, Wings and Bigs series leading up to 2023-24's top 100 NBA players.

B/R asked its best basketball minds to answer a series of random Player A vs. Player B debates. The question for each debate: Which player will rank higher by the end of the 2023-24 season?

In total, we compiled 8,632 votes across nearly 20 participants, narrowing our final player pool down to a top 110.

From there, a panel of experts each ranked every player from 1 to 110. They used their own criteria, considering everything from individual production, impact on winning (during both the regular season and the playoffs) and also health/availability.

All rankings were compiled and averaged. And then, voila! The B/R NBA 100 was set, with a list of 10 difficult cuts as honorable mentions.

Only thing left to do was separate players by today's common positions: guards, wings and bigs.

How did we determine positions, you ask? Check it out below.

The slides that follow spotlight our top NBA players for the coming season. But first, here's a look at which players fell just outside our top 100.

Honorable Mentions

Jaden Ivey

Jakob Poeltl

Shaedon Sharpe

Ivica Zubac

Clint Capela

Mike Conley

Brandon Miller

Dillon Brooks

Wendell Carter Jr.

Jeremy Sochan

2022-23 Stats — 14.7 PPG, 5.7 RPG, 2.5 APG, 50.1 FG%, 38.9 3PT% (74 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 68 (Down 32 Spots)

If Tobias Harris hadn't signed a five-year, $180 million contract in 2019, perception of him would likely be far different. He averaged a perfectly adequate 18.7 points on 48.7 percent shooting, 6.8 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.5 three-pointers per game over the first three years of that deal, although that production was by no means commensurate with his salary.

Harris' output plummeted last season as Joel Embiid, James Harden and Tyrese Maxey dominated touches on the Philadelphia 76ers, but the ongoing Harden standoff could allow him to take on a bigger role this coming year.

Perhaps we'll finally get to see the "assassin scorer" version of Harris emerge?

—Bryan Toporek

2022-23 Stats — 9.8 PPG, 7.8 RPG, 3.8 APG, 59.2 FG%, 37.2 3PT% (76 Games)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Everything Hart does impacts winning.

From his hustle, defense, rebounding, passing and scoring, his fingerprints are left all over the floor anytime he checks into a game. The Knicks were a whopping 15.9 points per 100 possessions better with him on the floor following his trade to New York (99th percentile, per Cleaning the Glass), as he filled any role the team needed him to play.

Giving him a full training camp with the Knicks and another former Villanova teammate in Donte DiVincenzo will only make Hart's impact even greater.

—Greg Swartz

2022-23 Stats — 7.0 PPG, 9.3 RPG, 2.5 APG, 63.0 FG% (82 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Kevon Looney had the best net rating of any Warrior in the playoffs, which justifies his ranking here.

His ability to offer some resistance when switched onto guards makes him more playable than most centers in the postseason.

Aside from athleticism and shooting limitations, what's keeping him from a significant rise in these rankings is that he doesn't play enough minutes per game—he played 23.9 in the 2022-23 regular season, which is low for a starter but a career high for the 27-year-old big man.

—Joey Akeley

2022-23 Stats — 12.1 PPG, 3.9 RPG, 1.9 APG, 51.7 FG%, 39.8 3PT% (79 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

The Minnesota Timberwolves' 2022-23 campaign didn't go quite as planned after their blockbuster trade for Rudy Gobert last offseason, but Jaden McDaniels was one of the few bright spots.

The 22-year-old averaged a career-high 12.1 points per game on 51.7 percent shooting, and he ranked in the 91st percentile leaguewide in Dunks and Threes' defensive estimated plus/minus despite taking on some of the NBA's toughest defensive assignments.

McDaniels missed the playoffs last year after suffering a broken hand in Minnesota's regular-season finale, which prevented his coming-out party on a national stage. Regardless, the Wolves figure to sign him to an extension by the Oct. 23 deadline, as he projects to be a cornerstone alongside Anthony Edwards moving forward.


2022-23 Stats — 12.6 PPG, 9.2 RPG, 1.9 APG, 70.5 FG% (76 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Nic Claxton had a breakout campaign with the rebuilt-on-the-fly Brooklyn Nets in 2022-23, averaging 12.6 points, 9.2 rebounds and 2.5 blocks while shooting a league-leading 70.5 percent from the field.

Suddenly, despite a 6'11", 215-pound frame that may be a bit slight in certain matchups, he looks like an archetypal rim-runner and rim-protector who can move the needle in a positive direction on both ends of the floor.

—Andy Bailey

Bojan Bogdanović

2022-23 Stats — 21.6 PPG, 3.8 RPG, 2.6 APG, 48.8 FG%, 41.1 3PT% (59 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Only 13 players averaged at least 20 points with an effective field-goal percentage of at least .570 last season. Twelve of those players placed in top 33 of our final top 100 rankings. Coming in 60-plus spots below them is the 13th, Bojan Bogdanović.

The biggest reason for that gap is his struggles on defense. Still, the 34-year-old will have been a bit underrated if he repeats his 2022-23 performance.


Bennedict Mathurin

2022-23 Stats — 16.7 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 1.5 APG, 43.4 FG%, 32.3 3PT% (78 Games Played

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Bennedict Mathurin's appearance on this list is among the most surprising, considering his way-below-average effective field-goal percentage and upside-down assist-to-turnover ratio as a rookie in 2022-23.

Consider it a vote of confidence in both the start (when he averaged 19.2 points and shot 40.3 percent from deep over his first 21 games) and finish (when he averaged 21.1 points over his last seven games) of that campaign.


2022-23 Stats — 13.1 PPG, 6.5 RPG, 1.2 APG, 50.8 FG%, 29.2 3PT% (71 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 60 (Down 33 Spots)

John Collins' scoring average has declined in each of the last three seasons. His three-point percentage dropped off a cliff in 2022-23, too.

At 25 years old, though, he's still on the right side of his prime. And his pace- and playing-time-adjusted production from the four seasons prior to 2022-23 is impressive. From 2018-19 to 2021-22, he put up 21.7 points, 10.2 rebounds, 1.4 threes and 1.2 blocks per 75 possessions.


2022-23 Stats — 12.2 PPG, 4.6 RPG, 1.2 APG, 45.3 FG%, 41.1 3PT% (80 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Keegan Murray seems one of the league's safest bets for growth in his sophomore campaign. His game has only a tiny number of cracks for someone of his age and experience level, and perhaps his biggest challenge—shot-creation—is masked over by the playmakers around him in Sacramento, namely De'Aaron Fox and Domantas Sabonis.

Saying that, the Kings likely know a leap year from Murray might be their best hope for building off their breakout 2022-23 season, so if he shows he's ready to spread his wings, they'll give him as much space as he needs. He won't reprise his superstar role from summer league, but a stat line in the range of 16 points and 2.5 assists is absolutely on the table.

—Zach Buckley

2022-23 Stats —19.6 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 2.8 APG, 43.4 FG%, 31.0 3PT% (73 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 59 (Down 32 Spots)

Lack of scoring efficiency has been a major problem for RJ Barrett throughout his career, but it still feels like there's some untapped point forward potential here.

With his size (6'6" with a 6'10" wingspan), he can see the floor fairly well. And when he really utilizes that advantage, the New York Knicks generally win. For his career, they're 19-13 when he totals at least 20 points and five assists.


2022-23 Stats — 18.5 PPG, 3.9 RPG, 3.6 APG, 43.9 FG%, 38.7 3PT% (38 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Devin Vassell entered the league viewed as a future three-and-D role player, but he's quietly evolving into a three-level scoring threat with more pull-up shooting and driving ability compared to when he left Florida State.

His 3.9 assists per game last year highlighted improved creation that allowed him to showcase some underrated passing skill.

He may lose shots this year to Victor Wembanyama, but Vassell has the type of complementary scoring skill set to put up points in a spot-up heavy role. He's positioning himself for a big second contract by showing he can be a top-three option and reliable shooter who can defend opposing teams' best wing.

—Jonathan Wasserman

2022-23 Stats — 14.9 PPG, 4.2 RPG, 3.7 APG, 48.4 FG%, 44.4 3PT% (67 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 74 (Down 15 Spots)

Before suffering a serious arm injury in the Eastern Conference Finals, Malcolm Brogdon was having a strong enough postseason that this ranking would have been too low.

President of basketball operations Brad Stevens said in June that Brogdon will be healthy for the start of the season, even if surgery is needed.

With that said, I wouldn't blame fans for being worried that, at the least, he'll have some trouble getting into a rhythm with a shortened offseason ramp-up due to his recovery.


2022-23 Stats — 11.5 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 3.4 APG, 48.3 FG%, 35.8 3PT% (80 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

After playing combo guard during his first two seasons with the Detroit Pistons and somehow operating as something of a roll man on offense for the Brooklyn Nets, Bruce Brown put it all together in what may have been his best season for the Denver Nuggets in 2022-23.

Despite standing just 6'4", he can reasonably play (and defend) three or four positions, create for others and knock down open three-point attempts. He's basketball's version of a utility man.


2022-23 Stats — 8.0 PPG, 8.3 RPG, 1.4 APG, 74.7 FG% (35 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Robert Williams III has averaged at least 10 points, 10 rebounds, two blocks and one steal per 36 minutes in all five of his seasons. Suffice to say, his per-minute impact is better than No. 87 overall.

However, his lack of availability makes this ranking fair. Time Lord has missed 131 games in the last four seasons.


2022-23 Stats — 9.2 PPG, 8.4 RPG, 0.9 APG, 72.0 FG%, 33.3 3PT% (74 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Walker Kessler ranked in the 87th percentile in Dunks and Threes' defensive estimated plus-minus and averaged 8.2 defensive rebounds and a whopping 3.7 blocks per 75 possessions as a rookie.

He's already a legitimate, game-changing defensive anchor, and he's barely 22 heading into his sophomore season. Development is on the way, and Kessler figures to be a mainstay on top-100 lists for years to come.


2022-23 Stats — 14.1 PPG, 4.5 RPG, 3.3 APG, 52.1 FG%, 35.6 3PT% (75 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Even as a rookie, Jalen Williams looked like one of the league's most well-rounded two-way wings. It's tough to identify any real holes in his game outside of missing one dominant skill. Over the last 26 games of last season, he averaged 18.6 points, 5.4 boards, 4.2 assists and 1.9 steals on 54.6 percent shooting and 44.0 percent from three.

Positional strength and length led to him smothering ball-handlers at different times throughout the season.

He's going to soar up NBA player rankings if he efficiently increases his three-point volume and takes another step this year as a shot creator.

2022-23 Stats — 12.8 PPG, 7.2 RPG, 1.3 APG, 40.8 FG%, 30.7 3PT% (79 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Jabari Smith Jr. terrorized summer league in Las Vegas, looking like a No. 3 overall pick who showed real growth throughout his rookie season.

His 6'11" frame and 7'1" wingspan allow him to swallow up opposing forwards on defense while hitting jumpers over top of them on the other end.

The 20-year-old has true superstar potential and will hopefully see his role continue to grow on a Rockets team that features far more veterans than a season ago.


2022-23 Stats: N/A

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Already with two years' worth of G League experience and real production against NBA-caliber opponents, Scoot Henderson should put up rookie numbers with explosiveness, change-of-direction handles and shot-making all translatable for rim pressure, finishing, pull-up shooting and playmaking.

The Portland Trail Blazers trading Damian Lillard should help expedite the 19-year-old's development, even if it means lower shooting percentages and a higher turnover rate.

Henderson figures to go through typical rookie struggles with three-point consistency and decision-making, areas he needs to improve in. His preference for mid-range jumpers will likely backfire early too.

However, he's still going to give defenses trouble with his shiftiness and self-creation, power drives and ability to knock down dribble jumpers.


2022-23 Stats — 14.8 PPG, 9.0 RPG, 3.9 APG, 55.3 FG%, 33.3 3PT% (75 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

With a bigger sophomore role, Alperen Şengün improved his scoring efficiency and showcased more of the passing skill that's going to separate him from post centers.

He's gone from older-school big man pre-draft to super versatile in Houston with his crafty footwork, improved ball-handling and vision. It feels like frequent triple-doubles could be coming for the 21-year-old, who's also emerged as one of the tougher rebounders.

Coach Ime Udoka will want to see him improve defensively and look better when switched out in space. And he took a step backward last season as a three-point shooter.

However, Şengün may wind up being so good with the ball in his hands that Udoka will be hesitant to take him off the floor.


2022-23 Stats — 17.6 PPG, 11.0 RPG, 3.2 APG, 52.0 FG%, 34.9 3PT% (82 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 66 (Down 15 Spots)

Nikola Vučević was one of only five players to average at least 17 points and 11 rebounds last season.

So why is he ranked outside the top 80? He gives it all back by being a sieve on defense, ranking in the 19th percentile in Dunks and Threes' defensive EPM.


2022-23 Stats: 22.1 PPG, 3.7 RPG, 3.7 APG, 41.6 FG%, 33.8 3PT% (76 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 70 (Down 10 Spots)

From 17.3 points as a rookie to 22.1 points as a sophomore, Jalen Green is in position to make a third-year jump into a tier with the NBA's top scoring guards.

Whether it gets him into the All-Star game will come down to efficiency and avoiding the empty-stat criticisms. But few in the league can match Green's combination of explosiveness, self-creation skill and shot-making.

He needs to find more ways to earn easier baskets, but teams want players who can consistently go for 25 points, and Green figures to be one of them at some point in the near future.

Picking his spots better and converting more often from deep should put him on a path to the NBA's top 50 by 2024-25.


2022-23 Stats — 15.9 PPG, 6.7 RPG, 1.3 APG, 53.1 FG%, 37.4 3PT% (78 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Finishing second in Defensive Player of the Year voting proved that Brook Lopez still has lots of good basketball left even at age 35. Making the All-Defensive first team for the first time in his 15-year career was a pleasant surprise as well for the Bucks.

Lopez also posted his best rebound rate (11.4 percent) in eight years, all while averaging 15.9 points and hitting 37.4 percent of his threes. His ability to space the floor is crucial for Milwaukee with Giannis Antetokounmpo on the floor.


2022-23 Stats — 22.0 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 2.9 APG, 45.2 FG%, 32.9 3PT% (63 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 89 (Up 11 Spots)

Catch-all metrics like Basketball Reference's box plus/minus and Dunks and Threes' estimated plus-minus both pegged Keldon Johnson's 2022-23 campaign as a step back, but he's still a 20-point-per-game scorer who doesn't turn 24 until October.

He shot 38.5 percent from three over his first three seasons, and it feels like there may be some untapped playmaking potential.

Ideally, incoming rookie Victor Wembanyama will divert some defensive attention away from him this season, which would make both scoring and creating a bit easier for him.


2022-23 Stats — 21.2 PPG, 7.2 RPG, 3.7 APG, 44.8 FG%, 33.3 3PT% (64 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 90 (Up 13 Spots)

Kyle Kuzma's rank may be low for the 21.2 points-per-game scorer, but he's likely penalized by the Washington Wizards' mediocrity. He and Jordan Poole will put up a ton of points this season on what might be an even worse Wizards squad.

However, Kuzma showed he's more than just a low-calorie scorer in the 2020 championship run with the Los Angeles Lakers. He has good size, mobility and skill to score against most opponents and, when motivated, is a versatile switching defender.

For now, he may be destined to be one of the best players on a generally bad basketball team.

—Eric Pincus

2022-23 Stats: 20.4 PPG, 2.7 RPG, 4.5 APG, 43.0 FG%, 33.6 3PT% (82 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 56 (Down 20 Spots)

If all you watched from last season was the playoffs, you'd be shocked to see Jordan Poole anywhere near a top-100 list, let alone in the top 80. He averaged 10.3 points on 34.1 percent shooting, at times looking unplayable.

But the 24-year-old should have a bounce-back season now that he's separated from the Draymond Green punch and all the questions that came with it.

Poole could average 25 points per game as Washington's No. 1 option, though he'll have to improve his efficiency to get into the top 50 for 2024-25.


2022-23 Stats — 20.9 PPG, 4.4 RPG, 5.7 APG, 43.7 FG%, 38.9 3PT% (75 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 44 (Down 31 Spots)

One of only four players (along with LeBron James, James Harden and DeMar DeRozan) to average at least 20 points or more for the past eight seasons, CJ McCollum's ability to get buckets isn't going away anytime soon now at age 31.

A high IQ veteran who's been asked to take on more playmaking responsibilities in New Orleans, he could benefit from some additional off-ball time as well after splashing 41.3 percent of his catch-and-shoot threes.


2022-23 Stats — 21.1 PPG, 2.6 RPG, 4.1 APG, 44.7 FG%, 37,7 3PT% (62 Games)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 76 (Up 2 Spots)

In some ways, Anfernee Simons feels like a known commodity. He is, in essence, an undersized scoring guard who can pile up points in a hurry. He pairs a fiery three-ball with dunk-contest hops, plus he's slippery off the dribble and creative around the basket.

But maybe he has more room to grow than we think. While this will be his sixth NBA season, he's still only 24 years old. Plus, he has a major opportunity potentially staring him in the face should the Blazers ever honor Damian Lillard's trade request.

If Simons takes a sizeable step with his playmaking or efficiency—or, fingers crossed, both—he could transform from a spark plug to a star.


2022-23 Stats — N/A

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Chet Holmgren will be in a favorable position to play to his strengths during his first season with Oklahoma City Thunder while Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Josh Giddey and Jalen Williams handle the creation and scoring load.

He's ready to make his biggest impact defensively with his 7'0" size, 7'6" wingspan, court coverage and instincts. Offensively, though, he has the right passers, tools and skill set to be an efficient scorer as a finishing target and pick-and-pop threat.

Compared to most his size around the league, Holmgren should be more equipped to grab-and-go in the open floor, hit threes, make specialty jumpers and pass. He's going to immediately fill a need for a Thunder team that has been consistently rising without him in the West.

While players ranked behind him (Anfernee Simons, CJ McCollum, Jordan Poole, Kyle Kuzma) may put up bigger scoring numbers, Holmgren seems poised to make a bigger two-way impact on winning.


Marcus Smart

2022-23 Stats — 11.5 PPG, 3.1 RPG, 6.3 APG, 41.5 FG%, 33.6 3PT% (61 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 52 (Down 19 Spots)

Wildly inefficient scoring has been an issue for the bulk of Marcus Smart's career, but he's a solid playmaker (as evidenced by his 6.0 assists over the last three seasons) who gets up enough threes to at least force defenses to pay attention to him outside.

What has always driven his value most, though, is his relentless point-of-attack defense that should travel to the Memphis Grizzlies.

After what felt a bit like a down year on that end in 2022-23, Smart should be out to prove his worth as a lead perimeter defender this season.


Michael Porter Jr.

2022-23 Stats — 17.4 PPG, 5.5 RPG, 1.0 APG, 48.7 FG%, 41.4 3PT% (62 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 67 (Down 4 Spots)

Coming off a championship run with the Denver Nuggets, Michael Porter Jr. has officially proved himself one of the best shooters in basketball.

Over the last three seasons, the 25-year-old has put up 17.7 points and 2.8 threes while shooting 41.6 percent from deep. His effective field-goal percentage in that stretch is an astronomical 61.1.

What's probably more interesting at this point is the consistent on- and off-ball defense Porter displayed throughout the 2023 playoffs. If that's now a fixture of his game, he can outperform this ranking.


Austin Reaves

2022-23 Stats — 13.0 PPG, 3.0 RPG, 3.4 APG, 52.9 FG%, 39.8 3PT% (64 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Undrafted in 2021, Austin Reaves has quickly climbed the ranks from rotation player to sixth man to a starter on a Western Conference Finals Los Angeles Lakers squad.

Entering his third year, the 25-year-old has already locked in a solid contract ($53.8 million over four years, player option on the final season). He's quickly become a core piece for the Lakers, who hope to improve upon last season's impressive run.

Reaves is a fan favorite in L.A., in part because he plays hard on both ends of the floor but also because he puts up numbers. Those numbers also (mostly) climbed in the postseason to 16.9 PPG, 46.4 FG%, 44.3 3PT% and 89.5 FT%.


Chris Paul

2022-23 Stats — 13.9 PPG, 4.3 RPG, 8.9 APG, 44.0 FG%, 37.5 3PT% (59 games played)

Last Year's Ranking: 31 (Down 38 Spots)

Chris Paul will go down as a first-ballot Hall of Famer, but the Phoenix Suns decided to waive him outright to save money or find a trade. He was eventually dealt to the Washington Wizards but was quickly rerouted to the Golden State Warriors (for Jordan Poole).

Paul goes from contender to lottery team (for a few days) to contender—where, at 38, he won't have to carry too heavy a load.

His lower ranking must be age/injury concerns; he's still arguably the best true point guard in the league (most of the All-Star ball-handlers look to score first). Defensively, he has to pace himself but can bring it down the stretch of close games.

Look for the Warriors to manage his time wisely and for Paul to look better than quite a few of the players listed ahead of him.


2022-23 Stats — 12.4 PPG, 3.6 RPG, 3.9 APG, 46.2 FG%, 38.1 3PT% (82 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

The Boston Celtics were sold enough on Derrick White to move stalwart Marcus Smart to the Memphis Grizzlies.

White played all 82 games last year for the Celtics and was rock-solid through the playoffs, averaging 13.4 points on 45.5 percent shooting from three-point range.

White will presumably take on Smart's role as a do-everything guard (defense, scoring, shooting, etc.). He may not be a primary playmaker, but the Celtics haven't operated with one in recent years.

Instead, White will share those duties with others such as Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown and Malcolm Brogdon.


2022-23 Stats — 15.5 PPG, 4.4 RPG, 1.9 APG, 47.0 FG%, 40.4 3PT% (42 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

Cameron Johnson has been above average in Dunks and Threes' defensive estimated plus-minus in each of the last three seasons, peaking at the 96th percentile in 2022-23.

He's not the quickest defender in the league, but his size (6'8" with a 6'10" wingspan) and the ability to get to the right spots before he has to make him a plus on that end.

And when you add that to his career average of 2.2 threes (in just 25.0 minutes) and 39.3 three-point percentage, it's easy to see Johnson as one of the better three-and-D forwards in basketball.


2022-23 Stats — 20.1 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 4.2 APG, 43.9 FG%, 37.8 3PT% (67 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 62 (Down 4 Spots)

Tyler Herro is more polarizing than he should be. Whether it's his contract, his defensive deficiencies or the early hype he received—for making significant playoff contributions as a rookie, mind you—people like picking apart his game.

The 23-year-old has holes (anything related to defense), but his movement shooting and flashes of live-dribble passing point to an interesting future.

This season should determine whether that scrutiny has merit. He could spend it outside of Miami as someone else's key cog, or he'll attempt to become the missing piece in the Heat's half-court offense.

We know he can score, but can he do it efficiently enough to cover for his defensive issues? Stay tuned.


2022-23 Stats — 16.3 PPG, 6.6 RPG, 3.0 APG, 56.4 FG%, 34.7 3PT% (68 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 93 (Up 28 Spots)

Aaron Gordon has morphed into a near-ideal complementary player. With Nikola Jokić's perimeter skills, he's willingly accepted more of a rim-running or dunker's-spot role on offense. And he'll ably guard just about any position on the other end.

The level of self-awareness and acceptance he's shown over the last couple years can be rare for someone of Gordon's pedigree (he was the No. 4 pick in 2014), but it's often an ingredient in championship runs.


2022-23 Stats — 14.3 PPG, 9.8 RPG, 1.7 APG, 64.4 FG%, 10.0 3PT% (68 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Rankings: 45 (Down 19 Spots)

Jarrett Allen has established himself as a rock-solid starting center, one who knows his role and executes it at a high level with his rim protection, rebounding and lob-finishing ability.

Still just 25, he has some room to grow, especially on the offensive end where he has yet to expand his shooting range.

For now, though, Gordon is an excellent defender who held opponents to a lower percentage at the rim than players like Anthony Davis, Rudy Gobert and Myles Turner.


2022-23 Stats — N/A

Last Year's Top 100 Rankings: N/A

In France's top pro league, Victor Wembanyama was able to finish second in scoring and first in rebounding and shot-blocking at 18-19 years old.

The No. 1 pick isn't going to need much time to make an impact and put up numbers with his 7'4" size, 8'0" wingspan, special mobility and obvious shot-making skill, especially with another high-usage role and a better passing point guard in Tre Jones.

At baseline, the 19-year-old should be good for elite finishing, putbacks and high-level shot-making. But with his advantageous measurements, he'll also have a dangerous green light that allows him to test his shooting range, ball-handling and post moves, which are all sharp enough for him to give defenses persistent problems.


2022-23 Stats — 13.4 PPG, 11.6 RPG, 1.2 APG, 65.9 FG% (70 games played)

Last Year's Ranking: 20 (Down 42 Spots)

After ranking no lower than the 94th percentile in Dunks and Threes' estimated plus-minus from 2014-15 to 2021-22 (and no lower than the 98th percentile in defensive estimated plus-minus), Rudy Gobert finally took a step back in both metrics in 2022-23.

However, the 31-year-old is still 7'1", as good as any big at reading an offense and one of the game's most fearsome rim protectors.

Tune into any Minnesota Timberwolves game this season and you'll see a few opposing drivers enter the paint, see Gobert and do an abrupt U-turn back to the perimeter.


2022-23 Stats — 21.5 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 4.4 APG, 47.9 FG%, 40.8 3PT% (58 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Rankings: 55 (Down 6 Spots)

Full disclosure: I had Desmond Bane about 20 spots higher than his final spot in our top 100. Not many players average over 20 points, four assists, shoot over 40 percent from three and play above-average defense.

If the 25-year-old has a similar performance this season and misses fewer games (he missed 24 last season), he'll skyrocket up the rankings for 2024-25.


2022-23 Stats — 21.9 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 2.4 APG, 43.6 FG%, 41.2 3PT% (69 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 43 (Down 17 Spots)

Klay Thompson continued his remarkable consistency on offense last season, averaging 20-plus points for the seventh consecutive season he's played in. And he's shot at least 40 percent from three in nine of his 10 seasons.

What keeps the 33-year-old this low in our order is his declining defensive impact. He's essentially a league-average defender in Dunks and Threes' EPM.

Shooting 25 percent in the last four playoff games against the Lakers didn't help, either.


2022-23 Stats — 19.3 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 7.2 APG, 39.3 FG%, 34.2 3PT% (69 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 41 (Down 18 Spots)

Fred VanVleet is equal parts fearless and relentless. He wouldn't be in this spot—inking a $130 million pact as a (generously listed?) 6'0" point guard who entered the league as an undrafted free agent—without those traits.

Houston needed a culture change, and he should be the perfect leader to usher one in.

However, he'll turn 30 soon, and you wonder if the aging process could be unkind to him on the court. He has always had trouble scoring inside the arc, and his three-point splash rate took a huge hit last season (career-worst 34.2 percent).

For all that VanVleet offers as an on-court communicator and connector, he'll have trouble handling so many minutes and touches if he can't get his shooting back on track.


Josh Giddey

2022-23 Stats — 16.6 PPG, 7.9 RPG, 6.2 APG, 48.2 FG%, 32.5 3PT% (76 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 91 (Up 34 Spots)

A 6'8" player listed as a guard by the Thunder (but listed as a forward here) who improved his three-point shot by a hefty 6.2 percentage points last season, Josh Giddey is yet to celebrate his 21st birthday heading into Year 3.

One of only five NBA players to average at least 16 points, seven rebounds and six assists last season, he is a nightly triple-double threat who's only just scratching the surface of what he can become.


Myles Turner

2022-23 Stats — 18.0 PPG, 7.5 RPG, 1.4 APG, 54.8 FG%, 37.3 3PT% (62 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 71 (Up 14 Spots)

Swatting trade rumors like he does opponents' shots, Myles Turner surprisingly stayed in Indiana last season while putting together the best season of his career with 18.0 points, 7.5 rebounds, 2.3 blocks and a 37.3 percent mark from three.

The 27-year-old's ability to stretch the floor and protect the rim is unique among centers and also allowed him to finish above other more paint-based centers like Rudy Gobert and Jarrett Allen here.


2022-23 Stats — 20.5 PPG, 4.5 RPG, 2.4 APG, 47.5 FG%, 40.1 3PT% (63 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 65 (Up 9 Spots)

Lost in the Damian Lillard drama, the Portland Trail Blazers have one of the NBA's better two-way wings in Jerami Grant.

He is a disruptive defender, strong on switches and has great length and mobility. The problem in Portland is one very good—among many poor—defender(s) can only do so much.

Additionally, Grant has prioritized scoring in recent years, dating back to his arrival in Detroit with the Pistons (2020). He averaged 20.5 points per game last season, including a stellar 40.1 percent from three-point range on high attempts (5.7).

The path forward in Portland is murky, and Grant's brand-new five-year $160 million contract may or may not be appealing on the trade market. He's clearly talented but is on the cusp of being 30 years old.


2022-23 Stats — 25.1 PPG, 10.0 RPG, 4.1 APG, 45.9 FG%, 34.3 3PT% (77 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 73 (Up 18 Spots)

Julius Randle made his second All-Star and All-NBA team in the last three seasons, rebounding from a down year in 2021-22 to help lead the Knicks back to the playoffs.

One of just three players to average at least 25 points, 10 rebounds and four assists (along with MVP Joel Embiid and third-place finisher Giannis Antetokounmpo), the 28-year-old impacts the game in a number of areas but falls in love with the three-ball (career-high 8.3 attempts per game) too often.


2022-23 Stats — 18.0 PPG, 10.0 RPG, 1.7 APG, 58.9 FG%, 29.2 3PT% (67 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 40 (Down 14 Spots)

Deandre Ayton was a solid double-double last season (18 points and 10 boards). He clearly wasn't on the same page as former Suns head coach Monty Williams but should be a better fit in Phoenix with new hire Frank Vogel.

The 25-year-old doesn't seem to view himself in the Tyson Chandler role (defend, rebound, but scoring is a low priority).

It will be interesting to see how Vogel utilizes him on a roster that may be an increasingly perimeter-heavy scoring team this season with Kevin Durant, Devin Booker and Bradley Beal.


2022-23 Stats — 15.3 PPG, 6.6 RPG, 4.8 APG, 45.6 FG%, 28.1 3PT% (77 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 41 (Down 12 Spots)

Scottie Barnes' stock skyrocketed in his first NBA season, and then it regressed in his second.

What could be on deck for his third go-round?

To borrow a phrase from legendary hoops orator Kevin Garnett, anything is possible.

If Barnes can harness his outside shot—admittedly a massive "if"—he'd have everything you want in a modern forward, as he's already a 6'9" shot creator with true five-position versatility on defense.

It could be tough sledding if he's operating in tight spaces again, but banking on someone with his size, skills and smarts still seems like a wise wager.


2022-23 Stats — 18.6 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 3.5 APG, 48.5 FG%, 36.1 3PT% (80 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 81 (Up 29 Spots)

He was sort of overshadowed by Rookie of the Year Paolo Banchero, but Franz Wagner was almost certainly the Orlando Magic's best player in 2022-23.

And his versatility at 6'9" makes him one of the game's more interesting prospects.

Last season, the 22-year-old averaged 18.6 points, 3.5 assists, 1.6 threes and 1.0 steals. There are only six other players in NBA history his height or taller who matched or exceeded all four marks in a 1,000-plus-minute season.


2022-23 Stats — 20.3 PPG, 2.9 RPG, 3.5 APG, 48.1 FG%, 43.4 3PT% (60 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 57 (Up 6 Spots)

The Philadelphia 76ers boast the league's reigning MVP in Joel Embiid, yet Tyrese Maxey might be the most beloved player on the team.

His rapid ascent into a dynamic, three-level scorer has surprised even the Sixers, as team president Daryl Morey is quick to admit.

The 22-year-old's development as a playmaker will be the biggest area of focus moving forward, particularly depending on how the ongoing James Harden trade saga plays out.

But whether he's a long-term complement to Embiid or the cornerstone of a rebuild if the Sixers eventually pivot from their star center, Maxey's exuberance and insatiable work ethic should make him a fan favorite in Philadelphia for years to come.


2022-23 Stats — 15.1 PPG, 4.2 RPG, 4.9 APG, 43.6 FG%, 31.5 3PT% (33 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 29 (Down 21 Spots)

Now 32 years old and coming off an injury-riddled season, Khris Middleton has some pressing question marks that could have leaguewide ramifications. If he's incapable of being the second-best player on a contender anymore, Milwaukee might have a hard time getting Giannis Antetokounmpo to buy into its long-term championship outlook.

But don't write off Middleton just yet.

Once the playoffs rolled around this past season, he was back to being his productive-in-all-facets self, averaging 23.8 points on 46.5/40.6/86.7 shooting with 6.4 boards and 6.2 dimes in 34.6 minutes per night.

Are those numbers sustainable for his age-32 season? Maybe not, but the 20-5-5 line he posted over the 2021-22 and 2020-21 campaigns seems both doable and hugely helpful to his team's title chances.


2022-23 Stats — 8.5 PPG, 7.2 RPG, 6.8 APG, 52.7 FG%, 30.5 3PT% (73 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 45 (Down 4 Spots)

In past years, I have bristled at Draymond Green's ranking in exercises like this one, as he is often much lower than I would have had him. But for this ranking, it seems about right.

Even at 33 years old, Green is still one of the most impactful defensive players in the NBA. But the Warriors' half-court offense was congested for much of the Western Conference semifinals series against the Los Angeles Lakers due in part to Green's reluctance to shoot from the perimeter and inability to score in traffic.

The Dubs simply weren't scoring with both Green and Kevon Looney on the floor, and when Green slid to the 5, they didn't get enough stops. For the first time in his career, Green had a negative net-rating swing in the playoffs.


2022-23 Stats — 23.3 PPG, 6.4 RPG, 8.4 APG, 41.1 FG%, 37.6 3PT% (36 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 32 (Down 16 Spots)

LaMelo Ball's contract extension (estimated at $205.9 million over five additional seasons) with the Charlotte Hornets suggests he's worth a higher ranking than No. 48 overall. That's for him to prove as one of the more exciting young guards in the NBA.

The Hornets were dreadful last season, partly because of roster composition, but injuries were a significant factor. Before a fractured ankle ended his season prematurely in late February, Ball averaged 23.3 points and 8.4 assists per game across 36 outings.

In his second season, Ball played a more robust 75 games and put up similar numbers (20.1 points and 7.6 assists per game). The Hornets are banking on his durability.

Ball, 22, is still very young and has a lot to learn, but a lot of what he can already do can't be taught. He's a bit wild and unpredictable, which is both a strength and a weakness. He needs to grow as a defender, though the front office may try to build around Ball with defensive-minded players who can shoot and finish. That he's 6'7" gives him potential on that end of the floor, unlike smaller guards who get targeted (especially in the playoffs).


2022-23 Stats — 20.5 PPG, 5.3 RPG, 6.1 APG, 46.4 FG%, 34.4 3PT% (74 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 36 (Down 11 Spots)

Having less responsibility (and opportunity) on both ends of the floor understandably limited Dejounte Murray's production a bit last season. His averages for points, rebounds, assists and steals all dropped from their 2021-22 levels.

Perhaps even more alarming than that, when he was on the floor, the Atlanta Hawks' net rating was significantly worse.

For at least the first year of the Murray-Trae Young partnership, things didn't go great. It's too early to give up on the experiment, though. In theory, it still makes sense.

Murray is undoubtedly a better perimeter defender than Young and can spare him some difficult matchups. He might also be able to generate a few more catch-and-shoot opportunities for his point guard. Hopefully, 2022-23 was just the adjustment period.

—Andy Bailey

2022-23 Stats — 16.8 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 2.0 APG, 47.6 FG%, 38.7 3PT% (67 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 63 (Up 17 Spots)

O.G. Anunoby is already one of the NBA's best three-and-D wings. He ranked third in Dunks and Threes' defensive estimated plus/minus and shot 38.7 percent from deep on 5.5 attempts per game last season. There's a chance that we have yet to witness Anunoby's best, too. According to Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports, he's "searching for greater ball-handling and playmaking duties in advance of his upcoming contract talks."

Unless the Toronto Raptors trade him in the coming weeks, Anunoby might get his wish. They signed Dennis Schröder after losing Fred VanVleet to the Houston Rockets in free agency, but that downgrade should open the door for both Anunoby and third-year forward Scottie Barnes to absorb some of the Raptors' playmaking responsibility.

Anunoby has a $19.9 million player option for the 2024-25 season that he's all but guaranteed to decline, and the Raptors can offer him no more than a four-year, $116.9 million extension until he becomes a free agent. Don't be surprised if Anunoby tries to show the full array of his skill set this season in a contract year.


2022-23 Stats — 17.1 PPG, 5.0 RPG, 2.3 APG, 47.3 FG%, 39.6 3PT% (37 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 53 (Up 8 Spots)

Andrew Wiggins missed 45 regular-season games last year, including the last 25 to be with his father, who was dealing with a serious medical situation.

It looks like the B/R voters are expecting Wiggins to return to playing 70-plus games this season, which is a good bet. Up until last year, he had never missed more than 11 games in a season.

The 28-year-old showed why he's a top-50 player with an excellent 2022 NBA Finals against the Boston Celtics. There's every reason to expect him to find that level again as he gets into a better rhythm by playing in more regular-season games.


2022-23 Stats — 24.8 PPG, 4.5 RPG, 4.2 APG, 48.5 FG%, 37.5 3PT% (77 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 27 (Down 17 Spots)

Zach LaVine steadily improved last season coming off summer knee surgery, averaging 26.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 4.2 assists and shooting 50.4 percent overall and 38.0 percent from three from December 23 on.

At age 28, LaVine should be in the prime of his career, and he's still a premier athlete. While his defense and impact on winning can be fairly questioned, LaVine is just one of nine players to average 23 points per game or more in each of the last five years.

Getting the Bulls back to the playoffs would do wonders for LaVine's standing here, especially as Chicago leans more on his playmaking ability with Lonzo Ball sidelined.


2022-23 Stats — 23.2 PPG, 8.4 RPG, 2.7 APG, 49.8 FG%, 38.5 3PT% (65 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 64 (Up 21 Spots)

Kristaps Porziņģis had arguably the best season of his NBA career in 2022-23. He put up career highs in points per game (23.2), assists per game (2.7) and effective field-goal percentage (56.5).

His presence and production as a rim protector aren't quite what they used to be, but those offensive numbers signify a game-changer on that end. And that's before you factor in his size and range.

Porziņģis being 7'3" commands opposing defenses to send bigs at him. That generally means they have to chase him out beyond the three-point line. Porziņģis is 12th in the play-by-play era (since 1996-97) in total makes from 28 feet and out. LeBron James and 10 guards are the only players ahead of him on that list.

Porziņģis' combination of range and still solid (though maybe not great) interior defense should make him an easy fit with the Boston Celtics and solidify his spot in our rankings.


2022-23 Stats — 24.5 PPG, 4.6 RPG, 5.1 APG, 50.4 FG%, 32.4 3PT% (74 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Rankings: 34 (Down 8 Spots)

In today's pace-and-space NBA, DeMar DeRozan is an anachronism. He's neither a high-volume nor a particularly accurate three-point shooter—he shot only 32.4 percent from deep on 1.9 attempts per game last season—which makes him stick out like a sore thumb.

Despite that, he's been an All-Star in each of the past two seasons. He averaged a career-high 27.9 points per game on 50.4 percent shooting during his first year with the Chicago Bulls in 2021-22, and he chipped in 24.5 points, 5.1 assists and 4.6 rebounds per game last year.

While most players have gravitated toward close-range attempts and three-point shots thanks to the rise of "Moreyball," DeRozan is one of the few remaining masters of the mid-range. He's been among the 80th percentile or higher in efficiency from that area of the court in each of the past four seasons, according to Dunks and Threes, which helped him be one of the league's most clutch players over that span.

DeRozan's underwhelming on-off splits and lack of playoff success raise questions about whether he could play a significant role on a championship team. Still, he's averaged at least 20 points per game in each of the past 10 seasons, which has to count for something.


2022-23 Stats — 16.2 PPG, 9.0 RPG, 2.8 APG, 55.4 FG%, 21.6 3PT% (79 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 39 (Down 2 Spots)

Mobley finished third overall in Defensive Player of the Year voting, earning his first of what should be a room full of All-Defensive first-team trophies. While he can still struggle one-on-one against bigger, stronger opponents near the rim, Mobley is perhaps the best perimeter defender of any power forward or center in the NBA.

The offense may never catch up to the defense for Mobley, but if it does, the 22-year-old should become a regular All-Star. After a transition period of learning how to play with Donovan Mitchell, Mobley averaged 18.2 points, 9.3 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 1.8 blocks and shot 55.4 percent over his final 34 regular-season games.

Adding a reliable three-pointer to his game is the next step, especially if he and Jarrett Allen want to maximize their frontcourt pairing.


2022-23 Stats — 20.0 PPG, 6.9 RPG, 3.7 APG, 42.7 FG%, 29.8 3PT% (72 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 78 (Up 38 Spots)

Paolo Banchero checks in at this point of the rankings after a convincing rookie season of proving his power, shot-making and passing all translate to No. 1-option scoring and secondary playmaking.

Assuming he builds on his 29.8 percent three-point shooting, last year's average of 20.0 points per game seems like a worst-case scenario for 2023-24. But he should also show up for season No. 2 with a better feel for NBA bigs' length and strength inside the arc.

While Banchero's assist numbers may stay the same with rookie guard Anthony Black expected to join the Magic's rotation, his ability to facilitate at 6'10" remains a clear strength and plus for Orlando's frontcourt.

—Jonathan Wasserman

2022-23 Stats — 19.9 PPG, 6.3 RPG, 6.0 APG, 41.5 FG%, 27.9 3PT% (12 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 48 (Up 9 Spots)

Slotting Cade Cunnington here means expecting he's ready to build off last year's start that a shin injury interrupted. At 21 years old, he was averaging 19.9 points despite shooting just 27.9 percent from three, a number he's sure to improve on throughout his third season.

At 6'7" and 220 pounds, Cunningham appears on track toward becoming one of the tougher ball-handlers to contain with his tight command, ability to rise and separate into pull-ups and bully smaller defenders on drives. But his passing is equally as impressive as the three-level scoring, and with the Detroit Pistons getting a second-year Jaden Ivey, explosive play-finishers in Ausar Thompson and Jalen Duren and sharpshooting Bojan Bogdanović, Cunningham suddenly has quality shot-making and athletic targets.

Though 2021 top-four picks Evan Mobley and Scottie Barnes had better rookie seasons than Cunningham, they stalled a bit as a sophomores at a time when Cunningham seemed poised to take a leap. The 2021 No. 1 overall pick seems like a good bet to quickly become one of the league's few players to average 20 points, five boards and five assists per game.

—Jonathan Wasserman

2022-23 Stats — 21.6 PPG, 2.7 RPG, 7.8 APG, 46.2 FG%, 41.0 3PT% (69 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 38 (Same Spot)

Donovan Mitchell's presence may have prevented Darius Garland from being named an All-Star for the second straight season, although it certainly didn't affect his production. The 23-year-old point guard's numbers were remarkably similar compared to the prior year's 21.7 points, 8.6 assists, 1.3 steals and 46.2 percent shooting, even while sharing the court with another premier scorer and playmaker.

Garland has the mechanics to become one of the best three-point shooters in the NBA and is coming off a career-high 41.0 percent mark from deep overall and 44.0 percent on catch-and-shoot looks.

Improving his defense and taking even more shots from three is the next step in Garland's evolution.


2022-23 Stats — 19.3 PPG, 5.1 RPG, 7.4 APG, 47.9 FG%, 38.4 3PT% (67 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 35 (Down 2 Spots)

In five of the past six seasons, Jrue Holiday has found his way onto an All-Defensive roster, with three first-team selections secured over this stretch. He has similarly blossomed on the offensive end, pairing solid support scoring with sound decision-making and accurate shooting, manifested in a stat line over the last six seasons featuring 19.1 points on 48.3/36.6/77.7 shooting with 6.8 assists against 2.8 turnovers.

If a healthy Khris Middleton can be Milwaukee's second in command again, then Holiday should rank among basketball's best third options. That may not sound like the most glamorous label, but his willingness to play his part—with job demands changing on a nightly basis—is a quietly massive part of the Bucks' success.

Holiday may not play the flashiest game, but he has mastered the art of bringing brute force to the backcourt. His physicality, poise and endless energy supply have helped him rank favorably among the league's most reliable lead guards, and the fact the 33-year-old isn't overly reliant on athleticism should allow him to continue aging gracefully.


2022-23 Stats — 24.0 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 6.2 APG, 49.1 FG%, 41.6 3PT% (68 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 61 (Up 25 Spots)

Jalen Brunson thrived in his first year as a starting point guard, averaging 24.0 points, 3.5 rebounds, 6.2 assists and shooting 41.6 percent from three.

The 26-year-old was exactly what New York needed, as Brunson's scoring, playmaking and lack of turnovers carried the Knicks to the best offense in franchise history (117.8 rating).

Winning a playoff series as a No. 5 seed was icing on the cake for Brunson, who should make his first All-Star Game this season while potentially making New York a home-court advantage team in the Eastern Conference playoffs.


2022-23 Stats — 19.1 PPG, 12.3 RPG, 7.3 APG, 61.5 FG%, 37.3 3PT%, (79 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 50 (Up 15 Spots)

Domantas Sabonis arguably deserves the most credit for the Sacramento Kings' historically good offense last season.

The center averaged 19.1 points and 7.3 assists, often acting as the offense's main hub. He also led the NBA with 12.3 rebounds per game.

However, the Golden State Warriors exposed Sabonis' weaknesses in the playoffs. They played way off him on offense, daring him to shoot, which limited his effectiveness. The bigger issue was his inability to protect the rim or offer any resistance to Stephen Curry off ball screens.

Sabonis has too much talent not to adjust to what the Warriors did to him on offense, but his defensive shortcomings might always follow him and prevent him from getting to the next rankings tier.


2022-23 Stats — 23.2 PPG, 3.9 RPG, 5.4 APG, 50.6 FG%, 36.5 3PT% (50 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 25 (Down 9 Spots)

Bradley Beal had some incredible individual seasons with the Washington Wizards. Across 2019-20 and 2020-21, he averaged 30.9 points, 5.2 assists and 2.6 threes per game. But the Wizards' lack of team success over that span suggested he may not be best suited for the kind of role that allows him to score like that.

With the Phoenix Suns, where he'll typically be the third option (maybe even the fourth, depending on how Deandre Ayton looks on a given night), Beal almost certainly figures to look better.

Opposing teams will often send their third- or fourth-best defender at Beal, allowing him to get cleaner looks on his jumpers and perhaps preserve a bit more energy for the defensive end.

Beal may have been miscast as a No. 1 option, but he now has a chance to be one of the league's best No. 3s in support of Kevin Durant and Devin Booker.


2022-23 Stats — 20.7 PPG, 3.7 RPG, 10.4 APG, 49.0 FG%, 40.0 3PT% (56 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 51 (Up 18 Spots)

Run this same exercise one year from now, and there's a non-zero chance Tyrese Haliburton jumps 20 spots in our final top 100 rankings. If you haven't fully bought into the idea of him becoming a franchise talent, this upcoming campaign should obliterate any lingering doubts.

No, he isn't the most explosive athlete, and yes, his shooting form is funkier than an Anderson .Paak album. None of that matters to Haliburton's impact, which has a chance to go from obvious to astounding over the course of the upcoming campaign.

Between Indy's offseason investments (Bruce Brown, Jarace Walker, Ben Sheppard and Obi Toppin) and Haliburton's summer spent with Team USA, his trajectory is pointed all the way up. He is a master manipulator of opposing defenses, using his handles, vision, eyes and creativity to consistently stay two steps ahead. Add a pull-up three and point-blank finishing to the mix, and you might be looking at the game's next unguardable floor general.

This past season, which was disjointed by injuries and spent alongside a developing supporting cast, saw Haliburton average 20.7 points and 10.4 assists while flirting with a 50/40/90 slash and coughing up just 2.5 turnovers in 33.6 minutes per game. He hasn't even celebrated his 24th birthday yet (that's coming in February).

If the Pacers sprint out of the gates, don't be surprised to hear Haliburton's name in early MVP talks. He could be that special.


2022-23 Stats — 25.6 PPG, 8.6 RPG, 1.9 APG, 49.9 FG%, 39.1 3PT% (66 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: N/A

No player broke out in 2022-23 quite like Lauri Markkanen, hence his Most Improved Player of the Year nod. His per-game averages skyrocketed from 14.8 points, 5.7 rebounds and 1.3 assists the year prior.

That boost in production not only sent Markkanen to his first All-Star game, but it also made him an All-Star starter. And by the end of the season, he had to be considered one of the best play finishers in the game.

Despite a lack of playmaking prowess or production, Markkanen ranked in the 96th percentile in Dunks and Threes' offensive estimated plus-minus. That had a lot to do with how economically he scored.

Markkanen finished the season fourth in catch-and-shoot threes made (and shot 40.7 percent on those attempts) and 17th in dunks. He's the first player on record to have a season with 200-plus threes and 100-plus dunks. To drive the point on economics home, Markkanen led the league in points per touch among players with at least 1,000 touches in 2022-23.

There is still some room for growth here. Markkanen could improve as a creator, passer and defender. But even if he doesn't, his ability to impact a game is unquestionable now.


2022-23 Stats — 18.6 PPG, 6.8 RPG, 1.0 APG, 50.6 FG%, 35.5 3PT% (63 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 54 (Up 23 Spots)

Jackson put on a masterful rim-protecting performance to earn Defensive Player of the Year last season. That may not be the only time he wins that award.

The 23-year-old led the NBA in blocks per game for the second straight season (3.0) while holding opponents to a measly 46.9 percent shooting at the basket. He's a skilled perimeter defender as well for his size, as Jackson has the strength and lateral quickness to defend nearly every position.

Add in career highs in points (18.6), rebounds (6.8) and effective field-goal percentage (56.7 percent) and it's easy to see why Jackson ranks higher than some fellow All-Star forwards in our top 100.


2022-23 Stats — 26.2 PPG, 3.0 RPG, 10.2 APG, 42.9 FG%, 33.5 3PT% (73 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 12 (Down 18 Spots)

World-class maestros would be impressed by Trae Young's ability to conduct an NBA offense. His pick-and-roll prowess is arguably unmatched, and his mere floor presence almost guarantees Atlanta a top-five attack.

Now, this is where some note that Young's defensive limitations (stemming mostly from his lack of size at 6'1" and 164 lbs) might also ensure a bottom-third defense. But that isn't our puzzle to solve; Atlanta's front office and head coach Quin Snyder have to crack that code.

Still, there's a reason the Hawks keep trying to make this work with Young. His all-caps ELITE offense offsets his negatives and then some. Only two players have ever averaged at least 25 points and nine assists in more than two seasons. One is Hall of Famer Oscar Robertson. The other is Young, a 24-year-old who has cleared those marks in four consecutive campaigns (a stretch that started in his sophomore season).

His lack of physical tools should be a hindrance—and are defensively—but he has hidden them on offense under a pile of deep threes, soft floaters, pocket passes and perfectly placed lobs. He is an offensive savant, and this league would be in real trouble if Atlanta ever figured out how to assemble a top-third defense around him.


2022-23 Stats — 24.7 PPG, 5.5 RPG, 5.8 APG, 48.4 FG%, 30 3PT% (45 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 24 (Down 5 Spots)

The 2022-23 campaign was a tale of two seasons for Brandon Ingram. He missed most of the first half of the year with a big toe injury on his left foot, but he flashed superstar upside upon his return.

In his 21 appearances after the All-Star Game, Ingram averaged 27.3 points on 49.9 percent shooting, 6.9 assists and 6.0 rebounds in 36.5 minutes per game. The Pelicans went only 11-10 over those games, although star forward Zion Williamson missed all of them with a hamstring injury, while CJ McCollum was playing through both a torn UCL in his right thumb and a torn labrum in his right shoulder.

Whenever Williamson is healthy, Ingram figures to slide down to the Pelicans' No. 2 scoring option. That makes his growth as a playmaker critical, especially since New Orleans doesn't have a traditional, ball-dominant point guard in its starting lineup.

Whenever the Pelicans decide to pivot off the Williamson-Ingram-McCollum core, Ingram's contract—he's owed only $33.8 million this year and $36.0 million in 2024-25—should make him an appealing trade chip. Until then, he should be in the All-Star mix moving forward if he can sustain his late-season production from last year.


2022-23 Stats — 26.0 PPG, 7.0 RPG, 4.6 APG, 60.8 FG%, 36.8 3PT% (29 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 22 (Down 6 Spots)

If we knew Zion Williamson would remain relatively healthy for the rest of his career, he'd be far too low in these rankings. There's no one in the NBA who can match his combination of strength and speed, as evidenced by the 26.0 points on 60.8 percent shooting that he averaged in only 33.0 minutes per game this past season.

We don't have the luxury of knowing the future, though. And with Williamson having played only 114 games across his first four seasons—he missed the entire 2021-22 campaign with a foot injury that required surgery—it remains unclear whether his body can hold up to the rigors of the 82-game regular season.

Williamson popped up in trade rumors this offseason, which perhaps speaks to the New Orleans Pelicans' ongoing frustration with his lack of availability. However, during an appearance on the Gil's Arena podcast (h/t Andrew Lopez of, Williamson said he's been "locking in on flexibility" and "band work" this offseason to improve his chances of staying healthy moving forward.

Before Williamson suffered the hamstring injury in early January that sidelined him for the rest of the year, the Pelicans were 23-14 and had the third-best record in the West. If he manages to dodge the injury bug this season, the Pelicans could be the out-of-nowhere team that goes on a surprisingly deep playoff run.


2022-23 Stats — 20.4 PPG, 9.2 RPG, 3.2 APG, 54.0 FG%, 08.3 3PT% (75 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 30 (Up 3 Spots)

An All-Defensive second-team selection each of the past four seasons, Adebayo has positioned himself for perennial Defensive Player of the Year consideration.

He is the defensive equivalent of a cheat code in the modern game—a 6'9", 255-pound center with the strength to battle bigs, the speed to keep in front of guards and the length to challenge, block or deter shots at the rim. Miami weaponizes him as a switch-everything stopper, since even the greatest perimeter scorers can't wiggle around him.

On offense, he has shown consistent growth as a scorer (each season produces a new career high in points) and an intriguing blend of ball-handling and playmaking. He can push the tempo off defensive rebounds, create out of short rolls, feed teammates from the elbow and free shooters with dribble handoffs.

Adebayo already has ascended to stardom, but his shot at superstardom depends on his assertiveness and ability to expand his range. Adding a three-ball would open even more opportunities, but Miami would be fine with him simply attacking the ones that are already there. The Heat could need more firepower with Jimmy Butler and Kyle Lowry advancing deeper into their 30s, and having Adebayo seek out more scoring chances for himself might scratch that itch.


Mikal Bridges

2022-23 Stats — 20.1 PPG, 4.4 RPG, 3.3 APG, 46.8 FG%, 38.2 3PT% (83 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 58 (Up 33 Spots)

Mikal Bridges was the designated defender with the Suns, taking on the opponent's top scorer. Any offense he brought was a bonus (he still averaged 17.2 points per game through 56 appearances last season with Phoenix).

Once Bridges was sent to the Brooklyn Nets, he got to show his complete skill set as an offensive player, averaging 26.1 points over 27 games. That's why the (almost) 27-year-old forward has jumped to a top-25 ranking—and how many of those listed ahead of Bridges are better defenders? Very few.

The bigger question is, how good can an NBA team be with Bridges as the top scorer? That may not matter much during the regular season. Brooklyn has enough talent to win over 40 games (though it has yet to make many changes since the Kevin Durant trade). But is Bridges a dynamic enough scorer and playmaker (2.7 assists per game with the Nets) to push his squad through much tougher playoff defensive schemes?


Kyrie Irving

2022-23 Stats — 27.1 PPG, 5.1 RPG, 5.5 APG, 49.4 FG%, 37.9 3PT% (60 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 23 (Down 2 Spots)

Kyrie Irving's talent is higher than his ranking in our final Top 100. But the voters may not trust him to reliably show up and play, whether due to health (a recurring concern) or personal matters (also a recurring concern). Otherwise, Irving's skill level is otherworldly.

Irving has scored in the 27-points-per-game range over the last few years. He will give the Dallas Mavericks five to six assists nightly, sharing creating duties with All-Star Luka Dončić. The team needed another playmaker to relieve some of that obligation from Dončić—and Irving, an excellent shooter, is a great fit on or off the ball.

The Mavericks will struggle on defense, with neither Irving nor Dončić significant factors. But Irving, who re-signed with the team this summer on a three-year, $120 million deal (including a player option on the final season), will help Dallas outscore many opponents throughout the regular season.

Whether it works in the playoffs is iffier, but the Mavericks should get there this year, provided Irving stays committed to playing and stays healthy.


2022-23 Stats — 24.2 PPG, 7.8 RPG, 5.8 APG, 48.0 FG%, 32.4 3PT% (71 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 28 (Up 4 Spots)

After winning the 2018-19 NBA championship as the No. 2 option behind Kawhi Leonard, Pascal Siakam scaled up his game over the past few seasons with the Toronto Raptors. Last year, he set new career highs in both points (24.2) and assists (5.8) per game while adding 7.8 rebounds, 0.5 steals and 0.5 blocks in a league-high 37.4 minutes per outing.

Siakam doesn't only do his damage around the rim. Although he isn't much of a three-point shooter—he averaged only 4.0 attempts per game last season—Siakam took nearly 30 percent of his shots from between 3-10 feet and another 29 percent from between 10 feet and the three-point line. He knocked down 46.9 percent of the closer attempts and 43.4 percent of the latter.

Siakam's growth as a playmaker in recent years was in part out of necessity given Toronto's personnel, but it turned him into a more well-rounded offensive threat. His defensive impact has slipped as he absorbed more responsibility on offense, but he showed significant potential on defense in a smaller role earlier in his career.

Siakam is heading into a contract year and could be one of the biggest prizes of the 2024 free-agent market. Unless he and the Raptors agree to an extension in the coming months, he'll have more than 200 million reasons to show out this coming season.


2022-23 Stats — 20.8 PPG, 8.1 RPG, 4.8 APG, 49.5 FG%, 36.6 3PT% (29 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 16 (Down 7 Spots)

Karl-Anthony Towns entered the 2022-23 season widely considered a top-20 player, including 16th in B/R's rankings. His drop in this year's version is warranted.

Towns' effective field-goal percentage, points and rebounds per game significantly dropped as he was forced to adjust his game while playing next to Rudy Gobert. The 2015 No. 1 pick also had the worst net-rating swing of his career and he missed more than 50 games with a calf strain.

As a center, Towns' offense exploits only fall short of those of Nikola Jokić and Joel Embiid. But as a power forward, Towns' effectiveness is limited with Gobert clogging the paint.

Towns is still an elite talent capable of dominating any game, but he simply has one of the worst offensive setups among star players.


2022-23 Stats — 21.0 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 10.7 APG, 44.1 FG%, 38.5 3PT% (58 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 18 (Down 4 Spots)

James Harden is currently embroiled in an ugly standoff with the Philadelphia 76ers over their refusal not to offer him a "long-term, maximum-level contract offer," according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. Based on what he did last season, it's easy to see why he's frustrated.

Harden led the NBA with 10.7 assists per game to go with 21.0 points on 44.1 percent shooting, 6.1 rebounds, 2.8 triples and 1.2 steals in 36.8 minutes across 58 appearances. Although he fell short of All-Star and All-NBA nods, he helped fuel Joel Embiid's MVP campaign, and he was the main reason why the Sixers won Games 1 and 4 against the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference semifinals.

Harden, who turns 34 toward the end of August, has lost some of the burst that made him one of the league's most feared scorers in the latter half of the 2010s. However, his playmaking should keep him in the All-Star conversation as he advances deeper into his 30s, assuming voters don't hold his three trade requests in as many years against him.

It's still unclear where Harden will be suiting up next season, or whether he'll be suiting up at all. Detach yourself from his off-court histrionics, though, and he remains one of the NBA's top floor generals.


2022-23 Stats — 26.2 PPG, 5.9 RPG, 8.1 APG, 46.6 FG%, 30.7 3PT% (61 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 10 (Down 11 Spots)

Voters were put in a difficult spot regarding Ja Morant's placement. He's suspended for the first 25 games, which on its own is worth dropping him a few spots.

The big question for these rankings and the future of the Grizzlies is: Will this suspension be his last? We all hope so, and he said all the right things when the suspension was announced.

When Morant returns, the key for him rising in our next top 100 ranking will be better shooting efficiency. His field-goal and three-point percentages dropped from 49.3 and 34.4 in 2021-22 to 46.6 and 30.7, respectively, last season.

On a positive note, Morant upped his assists to 8.1 per game, making him one of just three players to average at least 26 points and eight dimes.


2022-23 Stats — 28.3 PPG, 4.3 RPG, 4.4 APG, 48.4 FG%, 38.6 3PT% (68 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 21 (Up 1 Spot)

Slinging his way from Utah to Cleveland only increased Donovan Mitchell's production, as he made an All-NBA team for the first time in his career and finished sixth overall in MVP voting.

The 26-year-old guard's 28.3 points-per-game average was a career high, as was his 57.2 effective field-goal percentage. We saw Mitchell's best defensive effort since his rookie season, and he made his fourth All-Star Game and first as a starter.

At his best, Mitchell could be the best shooting guard in the NBA this season. At his worst, he's still in the top three to five overall as someone who can score in isolation, run the pick-and-roll or finish in transition.

His combination of speed, strength and shooting is everything you can ask for in a guard, particularly one who's yet to hit his peak.


2022-23 Stats — 26.6 PPG, 6.9 RPG, 3.5 APG, 49.1 FG%, 33.5 4PT% (67 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 19 (Same Spot)

The collective eyeballs of the basketball world will be firmly affixed to Jaylen Brown this season as he attempts to justify signing the richest deal in NBA history. He might be one of the best co-stars in the business, but $300 million is lead-actor money.

Boston doesn't need Brown to usurp Jayson Tatum, but it does need the 26-year-old swingman to tighten his handle and progress as a playmaker. Celtics fans will be overly eager for Brown to obliterate all lasting images of his final contest in 2022-23, a disastrous effort in a Game 7 loss of the Eastern Conference Finals lowlighted by 8-of-23 shooting (1-of-9 from distance) and eight turnovers.

The grading curve is up for Brown due to his historic pay raise, but he can absolutely earn his keep. Certain elements of his game need polishing, but he is a relentless attacker with a typically reliable outside shot who can seamlessly shift through different defensive assignments. He may not elevate other players around him, but he usually wins his one-on-one battles—often in knockout fashion.


2022-23 Stats — 23.8 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 5.1 APG, 45.7 FG%, 37.1 3PT% (56 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 15 (Down 3 Spots)

For Paul George, the question isn't talent; it's availability. Like his L.A .Clippers teammate Kawhi Leonard, George is one of the league's best two-way forwards. He's an elite scorer who can defend multiple positions with his athletic 6'8" frame.

He was named an All-Star last season but played in only 56 games, averaging 23.8 points with 6.1 rebounds and 5.1 assists. He missed time with knee and hamstring injuries, unable to get healthy for the postseason. Unfortunately, the 56 games were a personal best for George in Los Angeles—he averaged 78 for two years in Oklahoma City (2017-2019).

When he's at full strength, George must be guarded on the perimeter, where he took 7.6 attempts a game, hitting 37.1 percent. He's willing to play with or without the ball, creates for others and can guard the opponent's best scorer.

The key for George, who is extension-eligible and can opt out of the final year of his contract ($48.8 million) after this season, is staying healthy.


2022-23 Stats — 25.0 PPG, 4.2 RPG, 6.1 APG, 51.2 FG%, 32.4 3PT% (73 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 47 (Up 30 Spots)

De'Aaron Fox just authored the best season of his career. The scary thing is that he should be even better during the 2023-24 campaign.

Fox mastered scoring inside the three-point line, shooting a career-high 58.4 percent on twos. His pull-up jumper was devastating against defenders who played off him out of respect for his incredible speed. His scoring and playmaking were big reasons for the Kings posting the best offensive rating in the NBA.

Fox's biggest offensive weakness is three-point shooting, but there's reason to believe he'll improve his 32.4 percent rate from last season. After all, he made 21 threes (33.3 percent) against the Warriors in seven playoff games, and he played about half of that series with a broken finger on his shooting hand.


2022-23 Stats — 20.0 PPG, 4.0 RPG, 6.2 APG, 45.4 FG%, 39.8 3PT% (65 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 37 (Up 21 Spots)

Few players in NBA history get up for the playoffs quite like Jamal Murray.

For his career, he has a 0.5 regular-season box plus/minus, which is around the value of a "decent starter or solid sixth man," according to Basketball Reference's scale. In the postseason, that mark jumps to 4.7, which is somewhere between All-Star and All-NBA level. But even that doesn't quite do the difference justice.

For his career, Murray has averaged 25.0 points, 6.3 assists, 5.0 rebounds and 1.2 steals per game in the playoffs. Among players with at least 1,000 minutes, LeBron James and Luka Dončić are the only two in NBA history who match or exceed all four marks.

Murray's sense of big moments—and more importantly, his ability to rise to them—are what make his placement here fair. Seeing that ability on vivid display throughout a championship run makes it tough to dispute.


2022-23 Stats — 24.6 PPG, 5.8 RPG, 4.4 APG, 45.9 FG%, 36.9 3PT% (79 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 26 (Up 9 Spots)

While Anthony Edwards' jump in our final Top 100 rankings is notable, it's fair to wonder if we've actually placed Edwards too low. That includes being outside the top five of guards.

Currently the best player on Team USA despite having just turned 22 years old, Edwards is the next great NBA shooting guard and should push Devin Booker for the title of league's best already this season.

At ages 20 and 21, Edwards gained playoff experience with series of 25.2 points and 31.6 points, respectively, showing his ability to only get better when the lights get brighter. He turned in his best defensive season in 2022-23 as well and could become an All-Defensive team member in a few years.


2022-23 Stats — 32.2 PPG, 4.8 RPG, 7.3 APG, 46.3 FG%, 37.1 3PT% (58 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 14 (Same Spot)

Assuming his wish for an overdue exit out of Portland is granted, Damian Lillard will take his razor-sharp talents away from the only NBA home he's known. Depending on his destination, he may greatly impact the 2024 championship race.

High-mileage, athletically gifted point guards aren't supposed to age gracefully, but Dame Time clearly moves at a different speed. His 2022-23 effort was maybe his best to date, as he pumped in a career-high number of points, matched his third-highest assists average and splashed a personal-best 4.2 triples per night (at a 37.1 percent clip, no less).

Ducking the injury bug could prove increasingly difficult as he gets older, but Lillard's offensive concerns start and stop with that worry. If he's healthy, he'll be slaying defensive dragons and steering what should be a high-powered attack, regardless of where he's suiting up.


2022-23 Stats — 23.8 PPG, 6.5 RPG, 3.9 APG, 51.2 FG%, 41.6 3PT% (52 Games Played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 9 (Down 4 Spots)

Kawhi Leonard is the face of "load management." It's not ideal for the L.A. Clippers, who never seem to know when Leonard will be available to play.

When he's right, he's the dominant mid-range scorer who led the Toronto Raptors to a title in 2019 and one of the league's best players.

The Clippers tried to manage his games last season to keep him ready for the postseason. He played in only 52, averaging 23.8 points on an efficient 51.2 percent from the field and 41.6 percent from three-point range. But he couldn't get through the first round of the playoffs, suffering a torn meniscus (knee) that all but ended the Clippers' title chances.

Leonard can carry a team's offense while disrupting opponents as an elite defender when he is healthy. The Clippers would love just one season with Leonard, Paul George and the rest of the roster at full strength for an entire postseason run.

The talent is there, especially with an elite talent like Leonard. The luck just hasn't lined up.


2022-23 Stats — 22.9 PPG, 5.9 RPG, 5.2 APG, 53.9 FG%, 35 3PT% (64 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 11 (Down 1 Spot)

You wouldn't think playing hard would be a defining characteristic in a professional sports league. But if Jimmy Butler has a standout skill, his exhaustive effort and competitive drive might be it.

That isn't intended to diminish his actual basketball talent, by the way. He can create off the bounce, score on the move and always fills out his punch card for frequent trips to the foul line. While outside shooting has rarely been a strength, his inside-the-arc touch is among the best around. The Jimmy Buckets moniker is far more than a clever nickname.

Despite spending his first eight seasons outside of South Beach, he's become the living embodiment of Heat culture. He can out-skill his opponents, but he'd rather outwork them with full-speed runouts, downhill drives, relentless rebounding, on-ball tenacity and off-ball chaos-creation.

Injuries are a worry with the soon-to-be 34-year-old, as are the high-mileage minutes he's so often tallied. But he'll never go down without a ferocious fight, and he has given no indication to think that will change any time soon.


2022-23 Stats — 31.4 PPG, 4.8 RPG, 5.5 APG, 51.0 FG%, 34.5 FG% (68 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 33 (Up 22 Spots)

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander had one of the best campaigns of anyone in 2022-23. He was named an All-Star for the first time and earned a spot on the All-NBA first team.

Leading a young Thunder team to 40 wins and a spot in the play-in tournament was a pleasant surprise, as the then-24-year-old guard averaged a career-high 31.4 points while shooting 51.0 percent overall.

Only four players in the NBA had more estimated wins contributed than Gilgeous-Alexander's 14.4, per Dunks and Threes, and only Luka Dončić scored more total isolation points than his 472.

One of the best players in the NBA at getting to the basket, Gilgeous-Alexander may only be a reliable three-point shot away from reaching top-10 status in our overall top 100.


2022-23 Stats — 25.9 PPG, 12.5 RPG, 2.6 APG, 56.3 FG%, 25.7 3PT% (56 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 17 (Up 7 Spots)

After the 2022-23 season, people have seemed to remember that Anthony Davis is excellent at the game of basketball.

Since winning the title in 2020, the last few years have been a journey for the Los Angeles Lakers. They made a painful Russell Westbrook excursion, but after rectifying that ahead of the trade deadline, the Lakers advanced to the Western Conference Finals. Davis was a huge part of that, carrying a heavy scoring load and quarterbacking the team's defense.

Davis, an elite scorer (25.9 points per game last season), is arguably the best defender in the league. He didn't fare well in voting for Defensive Player of the Year, but his biggest flaw may have influenced that—availability. Davis has struggled to stay healthy through his tenure in L.A., playing in 56 games last season.

When he's at his best, Davis almost single-handedly disrupts a team's offensive attack. The Denver Nuggets, who went on to win the title, were better than the Lakers. Davis has become a full-time center but has some physical limitations against bigger-bodied centers like Nikola Jokić. But that's more of a roster and schematic issue for the Lakers.

Davis is a tremendous scorer at the basket. Defenders aim to push him out to the mid-range or even to the three-point line, where he shot just 25.7 percent last season. An entire season with the team's roster upgrades (dating back to the trade deadline) should lead to another strong year for Davis and the Lakers, provided he can stay healthy.


2022-23 Stats — 27.8 PPG, 4.5 RPG, 5.5 APG, 49.4 FG%, 35.1 3PT% (53 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 13 (Up 4 Spots)

How much weight should the postseason have in comparison to the regular season? That's the Devin Booker ranking dilemma.

In Dunks and Threes' Estimated Plus-Minus for the regular season, Booker was tied for 24th. But then the playoffs happened, and Booker put on a show.

The Suns' star guard averaged 33.7 points per game on 58.5 percent shooting. That alone gives him an argument for top-five placement in our top 100. But he also averaged 7.2 assists (and just 2.9 turnovers) and showed more defensive ability than ever before.

For an 11-game playoff sample size, Booker was arguably the second-best player in the NBA. Voters decided that was enough to get him in the top 10, but not enough to pass Kevin Durant and LeBron James in a rare loss for recency bias.


2022-23 Stats — 29.1 PPG, 6.7 RPG, 5.0 APG, 56.0 FG%, 40.4 3PT% (47 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 5 (Down 3 Spots)

Kevin Durant's 35th birthday is fast approaching, but evidence of his aging process is tricky to find beyond some recent availability issues. If he plays, he's still the same soul-snatching scorer he's always been.

He is one of the game's premier point-producers (in both the present and historical context), as a true three-level scorer and rock-solid secondary playmaker. He not only made his second entry into the famed 50/40/90 club this past season, but he also made it look absurdly easy, converting 56 percent of his field-goal attempts, 40.4 percent of his long-range looks and 91.9 percent of his free throws.

His shot-making is spectacular, to the point he has found uber-efficiency in the analytical dead zone known as the mid-range. Nearly half of his shots this past season were taken between 10 feet from the basket and the three-point arc. That would be an unhealthy shot diet for most, but Durant feasted to the tune of a 54.7 percent conversion rate in that range.

You wonder if his age, injury history and heavy offensive workload might damage his defense at some point, but that's as far as the concern grows, since he hasn't down-shifted at all on that end. In fact, the 1.2 defensive box plus/minus he posted this past season was his best mark since 2016-17.


2022-23 Stats — 28.9 PPG, 8.3 RPG, 6.8 APG, 50.0 FG%, 32.1 3PT% (55 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 8 (Up 1 Spot)

LeBron James has scored more points than anyone in NBA history. He would scoff at his final rating in our top 100, especially with a few key rivals just above him (and he'd undoubtedly disagree with a certain young star as well).

James is headed into his 21st NBA season and will turn 39 in late December. Even if he's not where he should be on our lists (from James' point of view), he's already made his case for top five on the GOAT list. And how many GOATs before him were still contributing at this high a level this deep into their careers?

Last season, James averaged 28.9 points, 8.3 rebounds and 6.8 assists per game. While his assists are down from the Lakers' 2019-20 championship run (where he peaked at 10.2), his scoring has climbed (from 25.3 points per game that season). James is still capable of taking over playoff games (see the first-round series against the Memphis Grizzlies or the final game of the Western Conference Finals) and remains the primary force whom teams have to game-plan for defensively.

Where he's fallen off some is on the defensive end, where he measures his effort. He can no longer guard faster, shiftier guards or wings. The Lakers play him more at power forward and aim to give him easier defensive assignments to save his strength to drive the offense. James has also seemingly lost his three-point shot, hitting just 32.1 percent last year.

Another concern, given his age, is availability. James has struggled through injuries the last few seasons, including playing through the playoffs with a damaged foot tendon. Through five seasons with the Lakers, he's averaged just 55.6 games.

That, if any, may justify his final ranking in our top 100—though good luck selling LeBron on that.


2022-23 Stats — 29.4 PPG, 6.1 RPG, 6.3 APG, 49.3 FG%, 42.7 3PT% (56 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 4 (Down 2 Spots)

Stephen Curry is still in his prime.

That's not supposed to be the case for a 35-year-old, but how can anyone deny it after he averaged 29.4 points per game on great efficiency in the regular season and upped his scoring average to 30.5 points in the playoffs?

Though he did have a few empty possessions in big moments of Games 1 and 4 against the Lakers in the Western Conference semifinals, it's perhaps harsh that on this list he's below a player who didn't make the playoffs and another who had a dismal postseason.

Of the top six players, Curry played the fewest number of regular-season games last year, and he's six years older than Joel Embiid, the second-oldest of the group. Of the six, he's easily the most likely to decline this season, and that surely was a reason he finished outside the top five.

If Curry maintains his 2022-23 play this season, even this ranking—including a second-place finish among guards—could prove to be too low when the year comes to a close.


2022-23 Stats — 30.1 PPG, 8.8 RPG, 4.6 APG, 46.6 FG%, 35.0 3PT% (74 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 7 (Up 2 Spots)

Jayson Tatum has taken his superstar ascension to such a towering height that very few rungs on the NBA ladder remain. There just aren't many boxes to check at this point, and the biggest ones—MVP honors and a championship—are now distinct possibilities in each season he plays.

With his methodical and mega-productive play style, he is someone who so often makes you forget he's all of 25 years old. It's very possible (and maybe probable) we haven't even seen him at his best yet, which is a nightmarish thought for 29 fanbases.

He is a scorer, first and foremost, and wholly dominant in that respect. In 2022-23, he nudged his scoring average north of 30 for the first time, and he is skilled enough to keep it there for the foreseeable future. He is comfortable, capable and confident in isolations, which are only growing harder to handle as his willingness and ability to distribute perpetually increase.

His defense is an underrated piece of the puzzle, too. He has both the physical tools and competitive edge to defend anyone but centers, and he has no hesitations about doing the dirty work necessary to grind out defensive possessions.

He still has room to grow in terms of shooting efficiency and creating for others, but again, time is on his side. If he adds that final coat of polish over the course of this campaign, he could easily exit it as the top two-way talent in the game.


2022-23 Stats — 33.1 PPG, 10.2 RPG, 4.2 APG, 54.8 FG%, 33.0 3PT% (66 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 6 (Up 2 Spots)

After falling just short in back-to-back years, Joel Embiid finally took home his first MVP award last season. The Sixers' playoff collapse coupled with the Denver Nuggets' march to the NBA championship might make that look questionable in retrospect, but make no mistake: Embiid was a worthy choice.

With a career-high 33.1 points per game last season, Embiid became the first center since Bob McAdoo in the mid-1970s to lead the NBA in scoring in back-to-back years. He did so on a career-high 54.8 percent shooting, fueled by a seemingly endless barrage of pick-and-pop elbow jumpers courtesy of James Harden and Tyrese Maxey.

Embiid is by no means the playmaking savant that Nikola Jokić is, but he's made strides in that department in recent years. After failing to crack 4.0 assists per game across his first five seasons, he's gone back-to-back years with 4.2 helpers per outing. The Brooklyn Nets relentlessly double-teamed him in the first round of this year's playoffs, and he calmly dissected them en route to a sweep.

Embiid also makes a fair share of highlight-reel plays on defense, although it's fair to wonder whether his playing style on that end of the floor is conducive to him staying healthy. In each of the past two playoffs, he got injured trying to make a defensive stand rather than living to fight another day.

Outside of the Sixers' first-round sweep in the bubble in 2020, Embiid has yet to make it through a playoff run unscathed, which is by far the biggest question about him moving forward. But if we do ever get a healthy postseason from Embiid, perhaps he'll be the one hoisting the Larry O'Brien Trophy one day rather than Jokić.


2022-23 Stats — 32.4 PPG, 8.6 RPG, 8.0 APG, 49.6 FG%, 34.2 3PT% (66 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 3 (Same Spot)

Still just 24 years old, Luka Dončić is coming off a career high in scoring and effective field-goal percentage (56.0 percent). No player in the NBA scored more isolation points than Dončić's 523, and he also got to the free-throw line at a personal-best 10.5 times a game.

In an NBA seemingly adding more and more oversized playmaking guards and wings, Dončić may be the very best of the bunch with the way he can methodically break down a defense using his bag of tricks and superb footwork. He's an elite passer who can snap defenders' necks by finding open teammates at a moment's notice.

Dončić may still be a step behind a few players in the league in terms of personal accolades and team success, but he's easily one of the game's greatest talents. He'll be coming for his crown soon enough.


2022-23 Stats — 31.1 PPG, 11.8 RPG, 5.7 APG, 55.3 FG%, 27.5 3PT% (63 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 1 (Down 1 Spot)

Giannis Antetokounmpo' scoring efficiency dipped a noticeable amount in 2022-23, and he's averaged only 65 appearances per season over the last two years. But when healthy, he remains one of the most physically dominant two-way performers the NBA has ever seen.

In 2022-23, despite the slight dropoff in his shooting percentages, he put up a career-high 31.1 points, was ninth in the league in points per game off drives and eclipsed five assists per game for the fifth season in a row. And he remains a defensive menace as well, particularly in rotations, where his size and athleticism allow him to make up ground in a way few (if any) others can.

So, why the drop after Giannis spent most of the last few years widely regarded as the world's best player by most (though not all) fans and analysts?

First, there's the somewhat superficial bump that a championship gives a player, and our top-ranked player is coming off one of those. Second, shooting is basketball's most important skill, and Giannis is perhaps the worst high-volume shooter in the league.

That he's still a rightful No. 2 on this list is a testament to everything else he does at a superstar level.


2022-23 Stats — 24.5 PPG, 11.8 RPG, 9.8 APG, 63.2 FG%, 38.3 3PT% (69 games played)

Last Year's Top 100 Ranking: 2 (Up 1 Spot)

Statistically, Nikola Jokić has been the best player in the NBA for three years. He's led the league in Dunks and Threes' estimated plus-minus in each of those three seasons, is an overwhelming No. 1 in Basketball Reference's box plus/minus over the last three years and has a chasm between himself and second-place Giannis Antetokounmpo in value over replacement player (the cumulative version of box plus/minus) over the same time period.

The distance between Jokić and Giannis in VORP is the same as the distance between Giannis and 17th-place Julius Randle.

Beyond the advanced numbers, Jokić is coming off a 2022-23 in which he averaged 24.5 points, 11.8 rebounds and 9.8 assists with an astronomical 70.1 true shooting percentage. Then, he backed that up with 30.0 points, 13.5 rebounds, 9.5 assists, 1.1 steals and 1.0 blocks in a 20-game, championship-winning playoff run.

At this point, there just aren't any questions left. Jokić is the most efficient, dominant offensive engine in basketball. He more than held up defensively in the playoffs and is now certified by a Finals MVP. Comparisons to the all-time greats are more appropriate than comparisons to what any current player is doing right now.


Atlanta Hawks: Trae Young (30), Dejounte Murray (47)

Boston Celtics: Jayson Tatum (5), Jaylen Brown (19), Kristaps Porziņģis (43), Derrick White (68), Robert Williams (87), Malcolm Brogdon (81)

Brooklyn Nets: Mikal Bridges (T-25), Cameron Johnson (67), Nic Claxton (96)

Charlotte Hornets: LaMelo Ball (48)

Chicago Bulls: DeMar DeRozan (42), Zach LaVine (44), Nikola Vučević (81)

Cleveland Cavaliers: Donovan Mitchell (20), Darius Garland (38), Evan Mobley (41), Jarrett Allen (64)

Dallas Mavericks: Luka Dončić (3), Kyrie Irving (T-25)

Denver Nuggets: Nikola Jokić (1), Jamal Murray (16), Aaron Gordon (65), Michael Porter Jr. (71)

Detroit Pistons: Cade Cunningham (38), Bojan Bogdanović (94)

Golden State Warriors: Stephen Curry (6), Andrew Wiggins (45), Draymond Green (49), Klay Thompson (60), Chris Paul (69), Kevon Looney (98)

Houston Rockets: Fred VanVleet (59), Jalen Green (80), Alperen Şengün (82), Jabari Smith (84)

Indiana Pacers: Tyrese Haliburton (33), Myles Turner (T-57), Bruce Brown (88), Bennedict Mathurin (94)

LA Clippers: Kawhi Leonard (13), Paul George (18)

Los Angeles Lakers: LeBron James (7), Anthony Davis (10), Austin Reaves (T-69)

Memphis Grizzlies: Ja Morant (21), Jaren Jackson Jr. (31), Desmond Bane (61), Marcus Smart (71)

Miami Heat: Jimmy Butler (12), Bam Adebayo (27), Tyler Herro (66)

Milwaukee Bucks: Giannis Antetokounmpo (2), Jrue Holiday (37), Khris Middleton (50), Brook Lopez (79)

Minnesota Timberwolves: Anthony Edwards (15), Karl-Anthony Towns (23), Rudy Gobert (62), Jaden McDaniels (97)

New Orleans Pelicans: Zion Williamson (28), Brandon Ingram (29), CJ McCollum (75)

New York Knicks: Jalen Brunson (36), Julius Randle (55), RJ Barrett (91), Josh Hart (99)

Oklahoma City Thunder: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander (11), Josh Giddey (T-57), Chet Holmgren (73), Jalen Williams (85)

Orlando Magic: Paolo Banchero (40), Franz Wagner (52)

Philadelphia 76ers: Joel Embiid (4), James Harden (22), Tyrese Maxey (51), Tobias Harris (100)

Phoenix Suns: Kevin Durant (8), Devin Booker (9), Bradley Beal (34), Deandre Ayton (54)

Portland Trail Blazers: Damian Lillard (14), Jerami Grant (56), Anfernee Simons (74), Scoot Henderson (83)

Sacramento Kings: De'Aaron Fox (17), Domantas Sabonis (35), Keegan Murray (92)

San Antonio Spurs: Victor Wembanyama (63), Keldon Johnson (78), Devin Vassell (90)

Toronto Raptors: Pascal Siakam (24), O.G. Anunoby (46), Scottie Barnes (53)

Utah Jazz: Lauri Markkanen (32), Walker Kessler (86), John Collins (93)

Washington Wizards: Jordan Poole (76), Kyle Kuzma (77)