It’s been a topsy-turvy world in the NBA recently, but one thing remains pretty constant, and that’s the list of who the best players in the league are…
1. LeBron James (1) – Still not a believer… in Cleveland. But LBJ? Could he be the second coming?
Guy is flat-out amazing.
2. Kobe Bryant (2) – Several times of late, the Lakers have hopped on #24′s back and said “giddy-up”. And Kobe’s taken the bit between his teeth, and just run.
3. Chris Paul (3) – Having had a look at some of the plays that get credited as assists for Paul, I feel obliged to state that his statistics are more than a bit bloated by extremely lax definitions of what actually make up an ‘assist’. Not that it’s particular to him, but he’s the one benefiting the most from this injudicious allocation of dimes.
4. Dwight Howard (5) – The Dwightmare is simply a beast. Around him, Orlando are becoming a definite threat.
5. Tim Duncan (6) – Tim Duncan. Just like the Spurs, no stopping this guy. The Timinator anyone?
6. Dwyane Wade (4) – Wade’s good, there’s no doubting he’s one of the best in the game. But sooner or later part of the process (of MVP voting) has to be measuring how well Miami are doing under his tenure. And they’re not doing so well.
7. Joe Johnson (7) – Like the Hawks, Johnson is just flying under the radar. Getting the job done.
8. Dirk Nowitzki (9) – Possessing one of the purest shots in the game, could actually move higher if he wasn’t deserving of the name ‘Irk’.
9. Chauncey Billups (new) – Whilst Melo’s out, even more will fall to Billups to get the Nuggets to be all they can be.
10. Brandon Roy (8) – Missed time out injured, but make no mistake: Brandon Roy is the reason the Blazers are as good as they are.
1. OJ Mayo (1) – Whilst Memphis are sinking, Mayo’s still the pick of the crop of the rookies thus far this season.
2. Derrick Rose (2) – Whilst Rose is ranked number 2 at the moment, he’s still probably the guy I’d pick if I had the draft once more (and I was responsible for actually selecting!).
3. Russell Westbrook (5) – Westbook’s playing quite well of late. Not well enough to impact the top 2, but pretty well.
4. Michael Beasley (3) – Beasley’s doing well, but far too erratically so. Thing is, no-one else is stepping up to take his place.
5. Marc Gasol (4) – Gasol maintains a tenuous presence inside the top 5 rookies. Probably the fact that he presents something different to those who could take his place. Not often a rookie center has any big impact at all.