The NBA draft is sort of a game of Russian roulette. One pick and your franchise’s future can either be set to construct around and turn out to be successful or it might send that franchise right into a tailspin. pick can energize a fanbase giving them hope for the longer term and excitement about their team over again. A lousy pick can send a fanbase into more profound despair with zero hope for brighter days. The NBA Draft is a lovely time of the 12 months but it might even have entire cities on edge waiting to see in the event that they made the best move or not.
The teams and picks you see today fall on each side of the spectrum I explained above. A few of these picks become franchise cornerstones. A few of them didn’t pan out in addition to the team and fanbase would have hoped. A few of these players were even traded on draft day, catapulting a distinct franchise in a positive direction. A few of these players’ stories are still being written while others have cemented their legacy either with the team that drafted them or elsewhere.
Listed here are the best current players drafted by every NBA team.
Atlanta Hawks – Luka Doncic (2018 third Overall Draft Pick)
Profession Stats: 26.4 PPG, 8.5 RPG, 8.0 APG, 1.1 SPG, 0.4 BPG
Luka Doncic was drafted third overall in 2018 by the Atlanta Hawks and immediately traded to the Mavericks on draft night for Trae Young. Mavericks fans like myself are eternally grateful. Now the trade happened to work out for each teams as Young and Doncic are 2 of the league’s biggest young talents. They’ve each elevated their franchises in their very own unique way but Doncic might just be on a complete different level.
The Mavericks were desperately looking for answers with Dirk Nowitzki’s profession coming to an end. Enter Luka Doncic. Just 4 years into his young profession, Luka had the Mavs back in serious championship contention in 2022. He has elevated the Mavs back into relevance together with his incredible feel for the sport, elite scoring, and other world-like playmaking. Just 4 years into his profession and he already ranks eighth in Mavs franchise history in points and is the franchise’s all-time leader in triple-doubles. The draft night trade for Doncic could thoroughly change the course of Mavericks history. All Mark Cuban and Nico Harrison need to do now are fill in the best pieces around their star.
Boston Celtics – Jayson Tatum (2017 third Overall Pick)
Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 20.9 PPG, 6.6 RPG, 3.0 APG, 1.1 SPG, 0.7 BPG
Since entering the league within the 2017-2018 season, Jayson Tatum has made leap after leap en path to becoming a franchise cornerstone for the Boston Celtics. His scoring has improved every season and it isn’t nearly numbers and statistics. It’s the best way that Tatum gets his buckets that has also improved. He has vastly improved his ending on the rim shooting 74.1% from 0-3 feet within the 2021-22 season. He has evolved right into a real three-level threat and considered one of the more serious offensive threats within the NBA.
The 2021-22 season was his best yet. Yes, his percentages from three dropped and he struggled within the NBA Finals with turnovers and shot selection. Let’s not let that distract us from how much his game has gotten higher. Defensively he has turn out to be a near lockdown defender evidenced by his performance in the primary round guarding Kevin Durant in a 4- series sweep against the Nets. Entering his sixth season the 12 months after leading the Celtics to the Finals, Tatum is looking to determine himself as a Top 10 player within the NBA and hopefully turn out to be an NBA champion.
Brooklyn Nets – Brook Lopez (2008 tenth Overall Pick)
Credit: Sam Sharpe-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 16.4 PPG, 6.2 RPG, 1.4 APG, 0.6 SPG, 1.8 BPG
Brook Lopez spent the primary 9 seasons of his profession with the Recent Jersey/Brooklyn Nets. He quickly became considered one of the best players in franchise history. He’s the team’s all-time leader in points, field goals made, blocks, and offensive win shares. He’s just considered one of two players in Nets history to attain over 10,000 points with the franchise. 12 months after 12 months, even when battling injuries, Lopez improved his game and have become more versatile.
Lopez had 4 different seasons where he averaged at the least 20.0 PPG and 5.0 RPG as a Net. He made the one All-Star appearance of his profession back within the 2012-13 season when he averaged 19.4 PPG, 6.9 RPG, and a pair of.1 BPG. Today Brook Lopez is a member of the Milwaukee Bucks where he starts because the team’s center alongside Giannis Antetokounmpo. He has regressed a bit right into a 12.0 PPG and 4.0 RPG type of player but provided an enormous spark to the Bucks on their 2021 title run. Lopez averaged 13.0 PPG and 5.9 RPG within the 2021 playoffs and earned the primary NBA championship of his profession.
Charlotte Hornets – Kemba Walker (2011 ninth Overall Pick)
Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 19.5 PPG, 3.8 RPG, 5.3 APG, 1.2 SPG, 0.4 BPG
Kemba Walker isn’t just the Charlotte Hornets’ best current player drafted, he might be the franchise’s biggest player ever. Walker began his profession with 8 seasons with the Bobcats/Hornets. He ended his tenure because the franchise’s all-time leader in minutes, field goals made, three-pointers, free throws, points, and offensive win shares. He made three All-Star teams and peaked in 2019 when he averaged 25.6 PPG and 5.9 APG while playing all 82 games.
Since being traded to the Celtics in 2020, Walker has had a number of ups and downs. He was an All-Star again his first season in Boston with 20.4 PPG and 4.8 APG. Nonetheless, since 2020, Walker has failed to look in greater than 56 games with the Celtics and Knicks. Knicks Head Coach Tom Thibodeaux couldn’t seem or didn’t want to search out a spot for him in his rotation in 2022 and he was shut down just about after appearing in only 37 games. Recently he was traded on draft night by the Knicks with Jalen Duren to the Pistons where he is anticipated to be bought out and seek employment elsewhere.
Chicago Bulls – Derrick Rose (2008 1st Overall Pick)
Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 18.2 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 5.4 APG, 0.8 SPG, 0.3 BPG
Each time I actually have to write down about Derrick Rose’s time with the Chicago Bulls I feel I shed a bit of tear. Rose’s profession was presupposed to be considered one of the best we had ever seen from some extent guard. It was actually on that style of trajectory when he became the league’s youngest MVP in history at just 22 years old in 2011. That season he was a 25.0 PPG and seven.7 APG player who led the Bulls to the perfect record within the East with a 62-20 record. Then 2012 got here when Tom Thibodeaux left him in a playoff game just a bit of too long in a blowout victory.
Now, Derrick Rose has had some great moments for the reason that injury but never returned to the MVP form he once was in his MVP season. As NBA fans, we were robbed of his peak which makes every victory he has had since just so far more rewarding to see. His 50-point game in 2018 felt like we saw him win a championship and the raw emotion Rose showed afterward was felt by all of us. Regardless that he could never be the player he was before, he continues to be by far the best Bulls player that’s currently energetic within the NBA.
Cleveland Cavaliers – LeBron James (2003 1st Overall Pick)
Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 27.1 PPG, 7.5 RPG, 7.4 APG, 1.6 SPG, 0.8 BPG
On and off the court, LeBron James is the best player to ever come out of Cleveland. Never mind what he did to bring them to relevance in his first stint with the Cavaliers, James brought home the primary major sports championship in the town’s history. LeBron has an argument to go down as the best player to ever live and his story began and peaked with the Cleveland Cavaliers. In considered one of the best NBA Finals performances of all time, James brought the Cavs back from a 3-1 deficit to defeat considered one of the best teams ever assembled. He averaged 29.7 PPG, 11.3 RPG, and eight.9 APG.
At 38 years old, James continues to be putting up ridiculous numbers, nearly winning a scoring title within the 2021-22 season. He has won 4 championships with 3 different franchises in his profession. Wherever he goes, immediately that team is a contender to compete for a title. As he gets set to interrupt Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s all-time scoring record, LeBron seems to have just one thing on his mind. Get back to the playoffs and convey the Lakers yet one more championship before he rides off into the sunset. It’s a shame that such an awesome profession could also be coming to an end in only a number of years but man, what a ride it has been.
Dallas Mavericks – Trae Young (2018 fifth Overall Pick)
Profession Stats: 25.3 PPG, 3.9 RPG, 9.1 APG, 0.9 SPG, 0.2 BPG
As discussed earlier, the second half of the Luka Doncic draft night trade was the Atlanta Hawks’ acquisition of Trae Young. Since entering the league, Young has wowed audiences together with his unbelievable shooting range and natural knack for playmaking. Possibly essentially the most impressive thing about Young is his ability to thrive in hostile environments. With fans spitting at him in Madison Square Garden and hurling personal insults, “Ice Trae” had no issues stepping up and sending them packing within the 2021 NBA playoffs.
The 2020-21 NBA playoffs were the perfect playoff run of his young profession. He led the Hawks to the Eastern Conference Finals behind averages of 28.8 PPG and 9.5 APG. Regardless that he shot just 31.3% from three, Trae looked as if it would hit every big shot in crunch time that the Hawks needed to regain momentum. The 2021-22 season for the Hawks led to disappointment but Young had the perfect season of his 4 within the NBA. He averaged 28.4 PPG and 9.7 APG on 46/38/90 splits. Trae Young is the longer term in Atlanta needless to say and with the addition of latest backcourt teammate Dejounte Murray, fans in Atlanta are chomping on the bit to get the season began.
Denver Nuggets – Nikola Jokic (2014 forty first Overall Pick)
Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 19.7 PPG, 10.4 RPG, 6.2 APG, 1.2 SPG, 0.7 BPG
When the Denver Nuggets chosen Nikola Jokic forty first overall in 2014, I don’t think even they knew what type of steal they were getting. After a quiet first 3 seasons to begin his profession, Jokic has developed right into a back-to-back MVP and a top 2 center in basketball. His 4 All-Star selections are synonymous together with his 4 All-NBA Team selections and he has earned the title of the perfect big man passer the sport has ever seen.
Let’s take a have a look at Jokic’s historic MVP seasons. Within the 2020-21 season, Jokic put up 26.4 PPG, 10.8 RPG, and eight.3 APG. Towards the top of the season, Denver lost their 2nd best player in Jamal Murray and Jokic was still in a position to make them the third seed within the West. A 12 months later, Murray still wasn’t back and Denver lost rising star Michael Porter Jr. to back issues as well. Jokic put the team on his back and averaged 27.1 PPG, 13.8 RPG, and seven.9 APG while leading the Nuggets to the 6 seed with none real help. As we head into 2022-23, we anxiously anticipate what Jokic has for us as a follow-up to his amazing past 2 seasons.
Detroit Pistons – Khris Middleton (2012 thirty ninth Overall Pick)
Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 17.1 PPG, 4.9 RPG, 3.8 APG, 1.2 SPG, 0.2 BPG
Khris Middleton spent only one season with the team that drafted him during which he only appeared in 27 games. Within the offseason of 2013, Middleton can be traded to the Bucks with others for Brandon Jennings. I bet Detroit wishes they might have that one back as Middleton has developed into an All-Star and NBA champion with a clutch gene that shows up on the largest of stages. I mean Middleton’s play was so good within the 2021 playoffs, that Kendrick Perkins even called Middleton Batman to Giannis’s Robin.
The past 5 seasons have been the meat of Middleton’s development. He has matured right into a consistent 20.0 PPG, 6.0 RPG, and 5.0 APG player. Within the 2020-21 playoffs that saw the Bucks win their first championship for the reason that 70s, Middleton stepped up big time they usually probably don’t win without him. He averaged 23.6 PPG, 7.6 RPG, and 5.1 APG while shooting 41.7% from the sphere. Sorry, Pistons fans.
Golden State Warriors – Stephen Curry (2009 seventh Overall Pick)
Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 24.3 PPG, 4.6 RPG, 6.5 APG, 1.7 SPG, 0.2 BPG
Nobody knew that Stephen Curry can be the best shooter to ever live when the 2009 NBA Draft rolled around. The Minnesota Timberwolves actually didn’t. All Curry has done since entering the league is turn out to be a 4x champion, 2x MVP, 1x Finals MVP, and the all-time leader in three-point field goals. Again, Curry is one other player who everyone knows doesn’t shrink back from the large moment. He thrives in it and needs the ball in his hands late in the sport regardless of the result.
Stephen Curry’s 2016 season that saw him named the league’s 1st ever unanimous MVP was considered one of the best single-seasons ever. He led the league in scoring with 30.1 PPG and in addition led the league in steals with 2.1 SPG despite being generally known as a comparatively negative defender. Even with 2 MVP seasons under his belt and 4 titles, 2021-22 was a very powerful season for his legacy. When the Warriors were counted out by just about every media pundit and expert analyst, Curry led the Warriors to their 4th championship in 8 years while finally grabbing his 1st Finals MVP award. When most thought he wouldn’t be as successful as he has been in his profession, the Warriors helped to mold him into considered one of the best to ever play.
Houston Rockets – Rudy Gay (2006 eighth Overall Pick)
Credit: Spruce Derden-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats:16.3 PPG, 5.8 RPG, 2.1 APG, 1.1 SPG, 0.7 BPG
Rudy Gay had all of the tools when coming into the league to be probably the greatest scorers we had seen. He was fluid, agile, athletic, and fast. When he was working toward the basket he was just about unstoppable together with his Durant-like ability to make use of his length to rise above defenders and get his shot off. He showed his ability as a defender as well when focused on using his length to disrupt passing lanes repeatedly.
He was drafted by the Rockets after which traded to Memphis Grizzlies for Shane Battier. In Gay’s first few seasons with Memphis, he developed right into a 19.0 PPG and 6.0 RPG star for them. After a brief stint in Toronto, Rudy moved on to Memphis where he kept his scoring prowess and upped his game to a peak 21.1 PPG scoring average in 2015. It is tough to imagine that Rudy Gay is on the point of turn 36 and is on the last legs of his profession however it was quite the ride to look at.
Indiana Pacers – Kawhi Leonard (2011 fifteenth Overall Pick)
Profession Stats: 19.2 PPG, 6.4 RPG, 2.9 APG, 1.8 SPG, 0.6 BPG
Imagine being the team that traded Kawhi Leonard for George Hill on draft night. That is strictly what then Pacers GM Larry Bird did. All Leonard did to reply was go on to turn out to be probably the greatest two-way players in NBA history while being a 2x Finals MVP. Leonard has all the time been a defensive stopper tasked with taking up an opponent’s best player. It’s his developing offense that has made him an all-time great.
In Leonard’s third season within the NBA, he became a Finals MVP with the San Antonio Spurs. It was his defensive efforts that won him the celebrated award but in 2019 with the Toronto Raptors, it was each his defense and offense that got here into play. The Toronto Raptors had Kawhi Leonard for one season and in that season, they made history. Kawhi led the Raptors to their only title in franchise history behind Finals averages of 28.5 PPG, 9.8 RPG, 4.2 APG, and a pair of.0 SPG. We anticipate his return to the Clippers lineup within the upcoming 2022-23 season. Can he lead the third franchise to a championship and take home a third Finals MVP award?
Los Angeles Clippers – Blake Griffin (2009 1st Overall Pick)
Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 19.8 PPG, 8.2 RPG, 4.1 APG, 0.8 SPG, 0.5 BPG
When the Clippers chosen Blake Griffin 1st overall within the 2009 draft, they’d hoped he can be a franchise changer, they usually were right. It gave the impression of every night Griffin was making SportsCenter’s Top 10 with one other highlight reel dunk. He was explosive and built like a brick wall with hops that were out of this world. In his first 5 seasons with the Clippers, Griffin was named an All-Star and a member of 4 All-NBA teams.
The Clippers hadn’t had much luck with draft picks in recent history before Griffin made his debut. I mean, Elton Brand was pretty good but never to the degrees that Blake Griffin reached. He helped the Clippers reach latest heights with division titles and better expectations than ever before. Regardless that it can have not worked out for the perfect, the excitement that Griffin brought around the town for the Clippers was a game changer for a franchise that was desperately clinging to life.
Los Angeles Lakers – Brandon Ingram (2016 2nd Overall Pick)
Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 18.5 PPG, 5.2 RPG, 5.6 APG, 0.7 SPG, 0.6 BPG
Brandon Ingram lasted just 3 seasons in Los Angeles with the Lakers before he was shipped out to Recent Orleans within the blockbuster deal that sent Anthony Davis back in return. His third and final season with the Lakers was the primary glimpse at his true potential as a rising star within the league. He averaged 18.3 PPG and 5.1 RPG that season shooting 49.7% from the sphere overall.
Since arriving in Recent Orleans, Ingram’s game has reached one other level. In his first season with the team, he was chosen to his first All-Star team and averaged 23.8 PPG and 6.1 RPG on 46.3% shooting. His best performance with the Pelicans nonetheless got here this past season within the playoffs. Within the first-round series against the Phoenix Suns, Ingram averaged 27.0 PPG, 6.2 RPG, and 6.2 APG. The arrival of CJ McCollum has helped Ingram tremendously to take the pressure off of him to be their primary option with Zion Williamson out as a consequence of injury. Ingram looks primed to make it back to the All-Star Game and much more essential to make the Pelicans playoff contenders once more.
Memphis Grizzlies – Ja Morant ( 2019 2nd Overall Pick)
Credit: Petre Thomas-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 21.2 PPG, 4.5 RPG, 7.1 APG, 1.0 SPG, 0.3 BPG
After completing just his third season within the NBA, Ja Morant has made the Memphis Grizzlies appear to be geniuses for choosing him 2nd overall in 2019. The potential showed itself in his rookie and sophomore seasons but in his third 12 months, Ja made the leap from star to superstar. He made it look effortless as he led the Memphis Grizzlies to be true contenders within the West with a 56-win season and a 2nd place finish within the conference.
In 2021-22, Morant took home the NBA’s Most Improved Player award, and rightfully so, although he won’t inform you that. Ja has much higher expectations for himself but fans know just how special this past season was. He averaged 27.4 PPG, 5.7 RPG, and 6.7 APG for the Grizzlies while leading a really young team to the 2nd round of the playoffs. Sure, he struggled with some injuries but that does not take away from the season that was. If the primary 3 years of his profession are an indication of things to return then look out for the young start in 2022-23.
Miami Heat – Bam Adebayo (2017 14th Overall Pick)
Profession Stats: 13.5 PPG, 8.3 RPG, 3.5 APG, 1.0 SPG, 0.9 BPG
Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
After a slow begin to his profession in Miami, Bam Adebayo has flourished into an integral a part of the Heat’s recent success. The primary 2 seasons of Adebayo’s profession saw him mostly come off the bench in South Beach with little to no impact. When he was finally named a starter within the 2019-20 season, he blossomed into an All-Star. It isn’t his impact on offense that has pushed Miami to the highest of the Eastern Conference standings, but his ability to defend every position on the court that stands out.
Adebayo is a middle trapped in an influence forwards frame but that doesn’t matter in the case of his play on the court. He can easily switch onto guards on the perimeter and don’t have any problem slowing down their production. At the identical time, he can control the paint on defense making big men’s lives miserable and attempting to get things going. Although his defense is the glaring strength for him, Adebayo did average a career-high 19.1 PPG in 2021-22 and is improving every 12 months. Many greats have come through Miami but there is no such thing as a higher energetic player drafted by the franchise than Bam Adebayo.
Milwaukee Bucks – Giannis Antetokounmpo (2013 fifteenth Overall Pick)
Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 21.8 PPG, 9.4 RPG, 4.6 APG, 1.2 SPG, 1.3 BPG
Giannis Antetokounmpo has actually come a good distance from the thin kid out of Athens, Greece drafted in 2013. Since then, he has bulked up and brought over the NBA claiming the highest spot because the league’s best player. His first 3 seasons in Milwaukee were met with growing pains and even rumors of his departure amid an absence of team success and failure to construct around their budding superstar. Since 2018, Giannis has averaged a minimum of 26.9 PPG and 10.0 RPG en path to claiming 2 MVPs, 1 Defensive Player Of The 12 months, 1 championship, and 1 Finals MVP.
Giannis has all the time been incredible on the defensive side of the ball nearly making it unimaginable for opponents driving the lane to have a straightforward basket. It’s his offense that continues to rapidly improve whilst we head into 2023. His 202-21 playoff run is considered one of the all-time greats even when met with a gruesome injury that may sideline most human beings for an prolonged period. After dropping the primary 2 games within the 2021 NBA Finals to Phoenix, Giannis had seen enough and reached a complete different plane of NBA greatness. He averaged 35.2 PPG, 13.2 RPG, and 5.0 APG including a 50-point performance to shut out the series. He took home the Finals MVP award and gave the Bucks their first title for the reason that days of Kareem-Abdul-Jabbar.
Minnesota Timberwolves – Karl-Anthony Towns (2015 1st Overall Pick)
Credit: Nick Wosika-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 23.2 PPG, 11.3 RPG, 3.1 APG, 0.8 SPG, 1.4 BPG
In a number of years, we could also be having a conversation about the perfect current player drafted by the Timberwolves but for now, it stays Karl-Anthony Towns. Towns has emerged as considered one of the league’s best big men improving in every aspect of his game, especially on offense. Towns has emerged as probably the greatest shooting big men the league has ever seen shooting 40.0 % from three 3 separate times in his profession including 2021-22. It has been greater than that to propel him to the highest of the league’s center rankings together with his insatiable appetite to win and drive to the basket.
The one other player to have more success driving to the ring than Towns in 2021-22 was Giannis. Incredible company to be a component of. After coping with tremendous loss in his family during Covid-19, Towns had a resurgent season in 2022. He averaged 24.6 PPG, 9.8 RPG,3.6 APG, and 1.1 BPG. The Timberwolves found themselves within the playoffs for the primary time since 2018 and left fans excited concerning the future despite a first-round exit. With the offseason addition of Rudy Gobert, the sky is the limit for Minnesota and Towns shall be at the middle of it.
Recent Orleans Pelicans – Chris Paul (2005 4th Overall Pick)
Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 18.1 PPG, 4.5 RPG, 9.5 APG, 2.1 SPG, 0.1 BPG
There isn’t a way around it, Chris Paul is probably the greatest point guards to ever play this game. It began in Recent Orleans where he transformed before our very eyes into one of the vital outstanding two-way guards within the league. With the Hornets, he led the league in assists twice and steals 3 times. He has the perfect offensive 12 months of his profession with the Hornets when he averaged 22.8 PPG, 11.0 APG, and a pair of.8 SPG. in 2009. His assists and steals led the league that 12 months.
Since leaving the Hornets, Paul has still playing two-way ball at an elite level. He has led the league in steals 3 times in addition to assists including a spectacular 2021-22 season. In 2021, he had the Suns just 2 wins from his 1st NBA championship but fell just shy due to a person named Giannis. In 2021-22, Paul kept it up even at 37 years old. He led the league in assists once more and averaged 14.7 PPG and 1.9 SPG. The window could possibly be closing on his likelihood at a hoop but with Phoenix’s talent, anything is feasible for them to be right back in contention.
Recent York Knicks – Kristaps Porzingis (2015 4th Overall Pick)
Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 18.9 PPG, 7.9 RPG, 1.6 APG, 0.7 SPG, 1.9 BPG
Kristaps Porzingis has all of the tools on the planet to be considered one of the league’s best bigs. He just cannot keep himself healthy enough to remain on the ground. Porzingis has not played greater than 57 games in a season since 2017 including a 12 months hiatus as a consequence of a torn ACL. When he was with Recent York for the primary 3 seasons of his profession is when all of the previously mentioned tools were on full display. He was named an All-Star for the one time in his profession with the Knicks in 2018 averaging 22.7 PPG.
Since being traded to Dallas in 2019, Porzingis has struggled to stay healthy but when on the court continues to be living as much as “The Unicorn” nickname. He can still provide you with 20.0 PPG and eight.0 RPG when available which is a virtually priceless piece to have on a roster. Dallas traded Kristaps to the Wizards at this 12 months’s trade deadline to Washington where he appeared in only 17 games. In those 17 contests, he put up 22.1 PPG and eight.8 RPG while shooting 47.5 % from the sphere. He appears to be within the Wizards’ plans as of now and with Bradley Beal’s contract extension has the potential to form a dominant duo depending on each players’ health.
Oklahoma City Thunder – Kevin Durant (2007 2nd Overall Pick)
Credit: Mark D. Smith, USA Today Sports
Profession Stats: 27.2 PPG, 7.1 RPG, 4.3 APG, 1.1 SPG, 1.1 BPG
The primary 9 seasons of Kevin Durant’s profession were spent with the team that drafted 2nd overall within the 2007 NBA Draft. During that point he became one of the vital feared scorers in league history. He won 4 scoring titles and an MVP award while pushing Oklahoma City to the brink of a championship on a couple of occasion. Durant is actually a special talent the likes of which we had never seen beforehand. A 7-footer who can handle the ball like a guard and knock down jumpers at an especially efficient rate. It is almost unguardable.
The best way things ended with the Thunder was not ideal when he left for Golden State in the summertime of 2016. It paid off though to the tune of two championships and a pair of Finals MVPs. Despite a setback with a torn Achilles within the 2019 NBA Finals, Durant has stayed consistent as considered one of the league’s top players. Now in Brooklyn with the Nets, he’s seeking to finally get back to championship glory. Can he and Kyrie stay together long enough to succeed in that goal together?
Orlando Magic – Dwight Howard (2004 1st Overall Pick)
Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 15.7 PPG, 11.8 RPG, 1.3 APG, 0.9 SPG, 1.8 BPG
As basketball fans, all of us remember the dominant force that was Dwight Howard with the Orlando Magic. He was a 3x Defensive Player Of The 12 months, 6x All-Star, 4x rebounding champ, and a 2x blocks leader. He was unstoppable on each ends of the ground. Nobody could contain him on offense and he wasn’t the person you desired to see across from you on defense. When you’re consistently putting up 20.0 PPG 10.0 RPG or more, and over 2.0 BPG, you might have to be considered probably the greatest to ever grace the court.
Although he was robbed of a spot on the NBA’s Top 75, Howard’s impact on the sport doesn’t go unrecognized. Basketball was dying in Orlando before Howard got here along and saved it. He made the Orlando Magic perennial championship contenders and it culminated in 2009 with a visit to the NBA Finals. Howard averaged 20.9 PPG and 15.3 RPG with 2.6 BPG within the 2009 playoffs and even though it led to heartbreak, Howard was in a position to hold his head high. Who knows? Possibly in 15 years, we shall be talking about Paolo Banchero as the perfect player to be drafted by the Magic.
Philadelphia 76ers – Joel Embiid (2014 third Overall Pick)
Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 26.0 PPG, 11.4 RPG, 3.3 APG, 0.9 SPG, 1.7 BPG
As of 2022, Joel Embiid has established himself as a Top 2 center in basketball. He’s a flexible scoring threat who brings an intensity and keenness for the sport that the City Of Philadelphia just loves and gets behind. For his size, his athleticism and footwork are on a distinct level which helps him as a disruptive pain presence, grab rebounds, and get high-percentage baskets.
Within the 2021-22 season, Embiid became the primary center to guide the league in scoring since Shaq in 2002. He finished 2nd in MVP voting behind Nikola Jokic, sparking debates worldwide about comparisons between the 2. He’s just 1 of three energetic players to average 20.0 PPG and 10.0 RPG for everything of his profession. If all “The Process” finally ends up producing is Joel Embiid’s profession, then we as basketball fans should just be grateful to have witnessed it.
Phoenix Suns – Devin Booker (2015 thirteenth Overall Pick)
Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 23.5 PPG, 3.9 RPG, 4.7 APG, 0.8 SPG, 0.3 BPG
Over the past 7 seasons, we’ve got watched Devin Booker become a serious three-level offensive threat. His scoring is flawless, in a position to pick apart opponents on the basket, from the mid-range, and three-point range as well. Since his 2nd season within the league, Booker has been in a position to consistently put up 22.0 PPG or more every season, making him considered one of the league’s premier shooting guards.
The past 4 seasons of Booker’s profession have been the largest evidence of his elite status. He has earned it by averaging at the least 25.0 PPG annually. Alongside Chris Paul, Booker’s playmaking has taken an enormous breakthrough as well. He can find his spots pretty much as good as anyone else within the league but when his shot isn’t there he also can find his teammates for good open looks. He’s at his best when he puts the ball on the ground and heads toward the ring. He can either stop on a dime and rise for a shot that he loves or kick to his teammates for an open look when the defense inevitably collapses on him. Without Booker, The uns aren’t finalists in 2021 they usually actually wouldn’t be contenders moving forward.
Portland Trail Blazers – Damian Lillard (2012 sixth Overall Pick)
Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 24.6 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 7.3 APG, 1.0 SPG, 0.3 BPG
One of the crucial exciting players of the past decade has been Portland’s, Damian Lillard. He’s an electrical scorer, savvy playmaker, and as clutch as anyone to ever pick up a basketball. Not to say that his loyalty is unmatched across the NBA, especially on this era. He also happens to be one of the vital efficient high-usage playmakers in all of basketball.
After an injury-plagued 2021-22 season, Lillard is seeking to return to form for Portland in 2023. The Blazers are a greater basketball team when he’s on the ground and what team wouldn’t be? In his last full season, Lillard averaged 28.8 PPG and seven.5 APG. In 2021, he shot 63% from the sphere in clutch situations and there is sort of nobody in basketball you’ll fairly the ball be of their hands than “Dame Time”. As we move into 2022-23, I do know that every one basketball fans are looking forward to seeing him back at full strength.
Sacramento Kings – DeMarcus Cousins (2010 fifth Overall Pick)
Credit: Sergio Estrada-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 19.6 PPG, 10.2 RPG, 3.0 APG, 1.3 SPG, 1.1 BPG
At his peak with the Sacramento Kings, DeMarcus Cousins was considered the league’s top big man and considered one of the easiest overall. He was a walking video game stat line, often putting up numbers that resembled an NBA2K stat line in easy mode. He was a bully within the paint, unwilling to back down from any challenge that opponents threw at him. When he finally began to hit his stride, there was simply no stopping him.
Before an Achilles injury completely modified the trajectory of his profession, Cousins was a consistent 26.0 to 27.0 PPG scorer and double-digit rebounder. Not only was his offense unstoppable, but his defense began to shut down opposing bigs at a high clip too. He was never afraid to get physical or get his grievances off his chest at any given time. “Boogie” might have been classified as an all-time great with the trail he was on. Injuries can just break your heart sometimes.
San Antonio Spurs – Dejounte Murray (2016 twenty ninth Overall Pick)
Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 12.5 PPG, 6.0 RPG, 4.8 APG, 1.4 SPG, 0.3 BPG
Dejounte Murray is coming off of the perfect season of his skilled profession up to now in 2021-22. Under the tutelage of Coach Gregg Popovich, Murray has turn out to be probably the greatest young two-way point guards within the NBA. In 2021-22, he led the league in steals with a median on 2.0 SPG. Greater than his defensive efforts, his offensive game has turn out to be far more polished and well-rounded.
Murray has a career-high 21.1 PPG in 2021-22 and eight.3 RPG together with 9.2 APG. his leadership skills were on full display too. He became the go-to guy in San Antonio, often being the one they might turn to in clutch situations. Regardless that it didn’t all the time end well, he still all the time wanted the ball which speaks volumes concerning the leader he’s. Murray does most of his damage from the mid-range although his abilities as a finisher and creator have improved vastly. Now with the Hawks after an offseason trade, I do know I’m considered one of those who cannot wait to see what they create together.
Toronto Raptors – DeMar DeRozan (2009 ninth Overall Pick)
Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 20.8 PPG, 4.4 RPG, 3.9 APG, 1.0 SPG, 0.3 BPG
So far as consistency goes, DeMar DeRozan is towards the highest of the list of current players. He is great as a scorer, Above average as a defender, and one of the vital reliable in clutch situations. Eben though he has never been generally known as a consistent three-point shooter, DeRozan can change the flow of a game in lots of other ways, He’s deadly from the mid-range and has considered one of the quickest first steps in the sport that always makes defenders look lost.
One other thing that goes unnoticed by others from DeRozan is his toughness. He never goes away from contact, all the time going right at a defender’s chest able to draw contact and finish through it. In 2021-22, DeRozan had a resurgent season of sorts. After 4 All-Star seasons with the Raptors, he found himself back within the mid-season classic with the Bulls after a 3-year stop in San Antonio. His first season in Chicago saw him average a career-high 27.9 PPG to go along with 5.2 RPG and 4.9 APG. Heading into 2023, he shall be seeking to lead the Bulls back to the postseason over again to compete in a heavily loaded Eastern Conference.
Utah Jazz – Gordon Hayward (2010 ninth Overall Pick)
Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 15.6 PPG, 4.5 RPG, 3.5 APG, 1.0 SPG, 0.4 BPG
The primary 7 seasons of Gordon Hayward’s profession were spent in Utah with the Jazz where he did eventually prove himself to be an All-Star caliber player. It wasn’t without some growing pains though. Hayward struggled early on to insert himself as a mainstay in Utah’s lineup. With exertions and the best guidance, he would turn out to be a premier player and All-Star for the Jazz in 2017.
The 2016-17 season saw Hayward average 21.9 PPG and 5.4 RPG. The season earned him a lucrative contract with the Boston Celtics which saw him team up with Kyrie Irving in Beantown. Unfortunately, Hayward’s begin to his Celtics profession was short-lived after he suffered a gruesome leg injury on opening night against the Cavaliers. Hayward has fought back and located a latest role with the Charlotte Hornets as a complimentary scorer next to LaMelo Ball and Terry Rozier. In 2021-22, Hayward averaged 15.9 PPG. Even though it was a drop from 2021, Hayward still shows flashes of the potential he showed early in Utah.
Washington Wizards – Bradley Beal (2012 third Overall Pick)
Credit: Mike Watters-USA TODAY Sports
Profession Stats: 221. PPG, 4.1 RPG, 4.2 APG, 1.1 SPG, 0.4 BPG
Over the past decade, Bradley Beal has turn out to be probably the greatest scorers in your complete NBA. He’s reliable as they arrive from all 3 scoring levels and shows zero signs of slowing down. Beal has been particularly efficient from throughout the three-point arc, shooting over 50.0% from that range every 12 months since 2016-17. He has also turn out to be a premier distributor amongst combo guards within the league, rating within the ninetieth percentile in assist percentage.
The 2021-22 season wasn’t the perfect given Beal’s horrible wrist injury that ended his season early. The Wizards would really like to see their $248 million man return to his 2020-21 form. That season, Beal averaged 31.3 PPG on 45.3% shooting overall. If he can mix his newfound passing skills together with his elite scoring of the past, the Wizards shall be in good condition in a really competitive Eastern Conference.