By: Will Stevenson
Basketball is back! There are a few conversations within basketball that get people riled up: Jordan, Lebron, Super teams, The Warriors, and other mindless semantics that get us nowhere. The one thing I hate about sports is the fact that my mortality lives vicariously through the athletes. For instance, Richard Jefferson is still out there for the Cavaliers. I remember when he played for Arizona! Then I was like; who else played for Arizona that makes me feel old? Mike Bibby (retired), Jason Terry (still at it), Michael Dickerson (who knows). What hell happened to Miles Simon? Anyway, the yearly basketball rankings came out, which always brings joy to see who’s still in the league and productive. We also get a chance to debate who’s better than who.
I’ll be going through every single player on the rankings. 1. I need to familiarize myself with who these guys still are. 2. I only know their rankings from 2k17. I’m sure to surprise myself with who’s on the list and who’s still getting those checks.
*Each name is linked to each player’s stats*
- I only know who this is because of NBA 2k17. He’s starting over Zach Randolph which either means he’s good, or new Head Coach Fizzdale wants to increase their pace of play. Looks like he can shoot, defend the post, and stretch the floor.
I don’t know if Ben is not a good player, or if this just happens to the majority of Kings players. Every year it seems he will relish, but then the Kings either draft someone at his position or bring in a vet who isn’t too old not to get playing time. Having Rudy Gay and Demarcus Cousins can have an affect on your team growth, but his individual growth is up to him. The Dave Joeger offense seems to open up for McLemore, but now it’s time to put it all together and get paid, or bounce around the league.
I didn’t know he was still in the league. I remember when the Sixers drafted him out of high school. That’s right ladies and gentlemen, he’s one of those prep to pro draftees. Can’t figure out why he went to the Lakers, but with Byron Scott gone, he’s sure to get more playing time and production.
Something has been a trend with the Jazz for a few years now: They have established bigs on the team and also have young bigs that will eventually take their spot on the team. Trey Lyles fits the description as the replacement for Derrick Favors when the time presents itself. Favors and Gobert replaced Al Jefferson and Paul Millsap. I think Millsap replaced Carlos Boozer. Oh yeh, I have no clue who this guy is. I heard he’s a stretch four.
Holy *bleep*, Dion Waiters is on the list. I don’t know why, but he is. I thought he was going to be able to sucker either the Kings or the Nets into a long-term deal, but it never happened. With Josh Richardson injured, Waiters has the opportunity to show is worth to the Heat and the league. The Heat don’t have a pure backup point guard at the moment, so this means “Heat Check” will have plenty of opportunities as the Heat go uptempo. He’s shooting 32% from the field right now. That’s funny.
Justin Anderson went 1-8 for 2pts, 5 reb in 12 minutes against the Nuggets. That’s who he is. He can’t shoot at the moment, but he hustles and plays defense. Can’t blame his for not getting consistent minutes yet, but they say he’s 195… So, ok.
He reminds me of a young Shaun Livingston; and that’s not good. He’s returning from his ACL last season, and with Mack, Neto and Hill at the same position I believe he’ll outshine Mack and Neto for minutes.
The above table is representative of Buddy Hield’s 3pt’s this season. Welcome rookie, it’s rough out here. He’s also 6-24 from the field.
Without Lebron, where would Shump be? Probably on somebody’s roster making the league minimum like Dion Waiters and Lance Stephenson. A 40 million dollar contract after losing in the Finals in which his value went up because the Cavs had nobody healthy. Last year he’s injured, but paid. This year, he’s starting slow and not the open three-point maker the Cavs paid for. Shump is more of a playoff performer.
He went 48% from the field and 41% from beyond the arc for the Kings last year. He always sticks around in the league and loves when the tempo is fast. The fact he’s ranked higher than Ben McLemore is saddening for Ben, and the Kings. This is not how they wanted it, but it’s exactly who the Kings have been.
Is it okay to say I’m surprised he survived the Bulls? His rookie season was abysmal mainly because it was new and the Bulls have veterans all over the place with Thibs at the helm. Last year he got more minutes and shot 45% and 40% respectively from the field and from three. This year his scoring has increased, right on time for the restricted free agency this year. Most players need time, opportunity and a system that works for them. The Bulls don’t have much shooting, so Dougie McD’s is perfect for the job.
Jeff Green was a power forward for the Thunder when they lost to Lebron and the Heat in the Finals. I don’t think Jeff Green has changed since then. He’s still inconsistent. He’ll still posterize you. He’ll occasionally drop 30 and remind you of why he keeps getting paid. It’s gone downhill since Boston for Green as he’s seen his value drop as his age rises. They are starting Aaron Gordon over him. Poor Jeff. Maybe someone will fall for his “potential” at the age of 30.
Keep getting that money Ish. He can’t shoot, but he can periodically run an offense. That’s all I have.
Remember when the cops broke his leg? I can’t believe that was never a big story. Thabo will keep an NBA spot until he can’t run anymore. He’s the Raja Bell of the league.
He’s injured, but Jared is Glen Davis 2.0 after steroids wore off. Jared is the epitome of the evolution in the NBA: Sullinger was big, not the best rebounder, and undersized, so he had to develop a 3pt shot. He did. It’s not deadly, but it’s enough to keep him in the league and paid.
He just got traded to the Sixers. That bites. He’s a good percentage shooter. A below average stretch four.
Al is bowing out slowly. He’s big, and now in an offense that doesn’t particularly need him. Funny thing is he has a coach in Nate Mcmillan that wants to give him the ball in the post. From 50 to 169, that’s quite a drop.
Why couldn’t they get an updated picture? This is a picture from NBA Live 05. He’s starting and pushing the pace of the Sixers, which is nice for them. 13 ppg and 7 apg in two games this season. That’s cool.
He’ll be returning from surgery soon, and the opportunity to get a mid-max deal in two summers. He shot 45% from the field and from three last year. He’s tall, active, plays defense and is a bright spot now that Dwayne Wade is with the Bulls.
A stretch four that plays no defense. Still have no idea what the Bucks and Jason Kidd are doing.
I keep hearing he’s good, but I don’t see him surviving. I do see him getting paid once they find a suitor for Tyson Chandler.
This guy. Every opportunity has been given for him to be a starter. He can’t shoot, is inefficient and doesn’t give the defense you want. They brought in Demarre Carroll, and kept him. He’ll be traded soon.
He’ll, dunk on you. He’s athletic. He can sometimes shoot. He rebounds very well. He’ll have the opportunity to play in Brooklyn.
This guy will be unemployed soon if he doesn’t find a consistent 3pt shot. He’s been on the Sixers long enough to put up good stats, yet he hasn’t developed into the player that can stat-stuff into a contract.
Still glistening off the Raptors playoff run last year. He’ll be taking Terrence Ross’s spot and minutes. He can dunk, occasionally shoot and play tough defense; Perfect for the Raptors.
Ever since he took out Russell Westbrook’s knee during that sideline timeout, life hasn’t been the same. He’s injured every year, but his ability to make jumpers and play hella defense will keep him in the league. I don’t know how he fits with Mike Antoni or with Harden at the point surrounded by shooters. Whether he sits the bench or is trade bait, somebody will welcome his services.
Darren Collinson, Russell Westbrook, Luc Richard, Kevin Love, and Aaron Afflalo were all on those UCLA Final Four teams. They are all starting in the NBA, that’s pretty impressive. Collison is suspended for domestic violence. Other than that, he shot 49% from the field and 40% from threes last year. For Collison, that’s very good considering he was never looked at as a spot up shooter. With Rondo gone, he’ll have the ball to himself, so to speak.
The way the Thunder are giving out contracts, Andre should be next up to get paid. If he’s able to knock down a meaningful three, he will be. I have a feeling that he and Cameron Payne will not get those dollars Kevin Durant left behind. He’ll get paid for his defense, but he could earn a lot more with a corner three or something near to it.
Last of a dying breed. Monta Ellis is the inefficient undersized 2-guard that doesn’t play good team defense but does gamble on steals. He shoots midrange jumpers, drives to the rim, but doesn’t shoot threes well. Those 25 ppg season are over for Monta, but he still provides scoring for a team that wants to score as many points as possible.
He’s a rookie. I guess he’s good. He’s the team’s leadership, remember.
I heard this guy was good on defense. He can’t shoot nor dribble, so he’s not useful on 2k. In real life, he can’t do either, he’s just what Brooklyn needs. They need someone to hustle and defend. He’ll get a contract somewhere else once Brooklyn changes ownership and gets the players they actually want.
This guy can score and shoot. He has a brother who even better and younger than he. If Bojan doesn’t go back overseas, he could earn a good deal with a contender, or he can be the next Peja Stojakovic and sign a big deal with a losing organization.
Why won’t thy trade him? They don’t need him, nor does he fit their scheme in Phoenix. He was duped by Lamarcus Aldridge and the Phoenix brass. Aldridge signed with the Spurs and the Mavericks couldn’t get DeAndre Jordan. Tyson is in purgatory. I hope the Suns trade him soon to a contender, he deserves it.
I don’t know how or why he got paid. He’s not young, not still developing, nor does he have the skills that warrant the deal. Nevertheless, he’s with Portland who took care of their backup swiss-army-knife all in one player. He can’t shoot, not efficient, plays defensive and can run an offense. He’ll be coming off the bench mostly as well. Sheesh. You see what playoff performances can do for you in a contract year.
Still ticking. He’ll come off the bench, be injured, and try to summon greatness in the playoffs while failing to do so. He’s had a good run, and now he’s getting those faithful Spurs checks. If only Jonathan Simmons were younger…
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