We Asked Experts Who Their Top-10 NBA Players Were And Here’s What They Said

Photo Credit: Jon Carmelli @ https://www.instagram.com/blackout.panda/

The NBA season is fast-approaching and as NBA fans look forward to the start of the season, we see the demand being met with lists, ratings, rankings and reviews. Lineups decided to poll a number of NBA analysts, writers and former and current players to see the differences and similarities of their respective Top-10 NBA players.

Here is the average ranking of each player and then below that is the individuals lists.

10. Kyrie Irving (Average Vote: 10.0)

Irving was a huge reason for the Cavaliers winning the championship in 2016. His ability to read defenses, understand when to pass and when to take control, and handles are extremely unique from any other guard in the game. If he can stay healthy with Boston this season, he’ll likely be a candidate for MVP based on the Celtic’s chances of having the best record and team in the Eastern Conference.

9. Joel Embiid (Average Vote: 9.70)

Embiid (and his teammate Ben Simmons) are the catalysts for Philadelphia’s meteoric rise to becoming one of the contending teams in the NBA. Although he’s had his struggles staying healthy, Embiid is one of the most skilled big-men in the league. Defensively, he’s in the Defensive Player of the Year conversation and offensively, he has a full array of post-moves and an ability to score the basketball from anywhere on the floor.

8. Russell Westbrook (Average Vote: 7.82)

The 2016-2017 MVP Westbrook basically averages a triple-double and has led Oklahoma City to the playoffs in the three seasons after Kevin Durant’s departure. Expectations after his MVP campaign coupled with adding players like Paul George and Carmelo Anthony may’ve moved him down a few spots in the top-10, but he’s still a player that drastically changes the outlook of your team.

7. Giannis Antetokounmpo (Average Vote: 6.76)

Commonly known as the greek-freak, Antetokounmpo has the prototypical elite size, strength and versatility to be an all-time great. Although the Milwaukee Bucks haven’t had much postseason success, voters still felt he was one of the best players in the league. Antetokounmpo has a new coach and is one of the youngest players on the list, which makes you extremely hopeful and optimistic about his future.

6. Kawhi Leonard (Average Vote: 6.24)

After sitting out for basically the entire season with San Antonio, Leonard is now in Toronto and it seems that voters felt he was still one of the best players in the league regardless of his strange and injury riddled season last year. He’s the definition of an elite two-way player and at age 27, he’s in what should be the prime of his career.

5. Anthony Davis (Average Vote: 5.25)

Davis, when healthy, is the best big-man in the league. His defensive and offensive versatility at seven-foot is remarkable and it showed with the votes. Many had him above Curry or Harden and you can’t fault them based on the talent and ability that Davis possesses.

4. James Harden (Average Vote: 4.80)

Harden won the MVP last year and did just about everything he could for a Rocket’s team that was one win away from an NBA Finals berth. Under Mike D’Antoni, Harden has been fantastic and with the addition of Chris Paul, it looks like Houston has a tandem that can play with the best.

3. Stephen Curry (Average Vote: 3.52)

Arguably the greatest shooter in the NBA’s history, Curry still seems to be the most valuable player on Golden State, even with Kevin Durant. In terms of the skill and size combination, I think most would say that Kevin Durant is better, but Curry makes Golden State’s offense hum and his play seems to set the tone for others on his team. A number of voters had Curry as fourth-best or lower, but ultimately number-three is where he landed.

2. Kevin Durant (Average Vote: 2.35)

After everyone picked LeBron as their best player, Kevin Durant was next up. However, there wasn’t a unanimous vote for him as the second-best player. Four of the 18 selected Durant as the third or fourth-best player in the league. Considering the fact that Durant went to a team that was historically great and had another great player next to him in Stephen Curry, it probably hurt Durant individually. He may present more problems defensively than any other player in the league due to his combination of size and skill, but Curry’s value on Golden State in many team-driven statistics is the same or higher.

1. LeBron James (Average Vote: 1)

Nobody out of the 18 people polled took LeBron as the second-best player in the world. Every single person on the list picked LeBron James as the greatest player in the game today. Not a surprise, after what he accomplished in this past postseason but it will be interesting to see how he fits in with the Lakers and how people view him after this season with a new team, coach and city.

Jorge Sedano

ESPN NBA, Sportscenter and ESPN Radio Host

10. Chris Paul

9. Joel Embiid

8. Giannis Antetokounmpo

7. Russell Westbrook

6. James Harden

5. Anthony Davis

4. Kawhi Leonard

3. Stephen Curry

2. Kevin Durant

1. LeBron James

 

Alex Kennedy

HoopsHype Writer

10. Joel Embiid

9. Kyrie Irving

8. Russell Westbrook

7. Kawhi Leonard

6. Giannis Antetokounmpo

5. James Harden

4. Anthony Davis

3. Stephen Curry

2. Kevin Durant

1. LeBron James

 

Jared Greenberg

SIRIUSXM NBA Host & NBATV Host

10. Kyrie Irving

9. Joel Embiid

8. Russell Westbrook

7. Giannis Antetokounmpo

6. James Harden

5. Kawhi Leonard

4. Anthony Davis

3. Stephen Curry

2. Kevin Durant

1. LeBron James

 

Ben Alamar

ESPN Director Of Analytics

10. Karl Anthony-Towns

9. Chris Paul

8. Giannis Antetokounmpo

7. Anthony Davis

6. Russell Westbrook

5. Kawhi Leonard

4. Stephen Curry

3. James Harden

2. Kevin Durant

1. LeBron James

 

Justin Termine

SIRIUSXM NBA Host

10. Jimmy Butler

9. Kawhi Leonard

8. Giannis Antetokounmpo

7. Joel Embiid

6. Russell Westbrook

5. James Harden

4. Anthony Davis

3. Kevin Durant

2. Stephen Curry

1. LeBron James

 

Sekou Smith

NBATV & NBA.com Writer

10. Kyrie Irving

9. Paul George

8. Giannis Antetokounmpo

7. Russell Westbrook

6. Kawhi Leonard

5. James Harden

4. Anthony Davis

3. Stephen Curry

2. Kevin Durant

1. LeBron James

 

Ryan Hollins

Former NBA Player, Current ESPN Host

10. Ben Simmons

9. Donovan Mitchell

8. Jayson Tatum

7. Kawhi Leonard

6. Joel Embiid

5. Russell Westbrook

4. Kevin Durant

3. James Harden

2. Stephen Curry

1. LeBron James

 

Andy Bailey

NBA Writer For Bleacher Report

10. Russell Westbrook

9. Chris Paul

8. Nikola Jokic

7. Kawhi Leonard

6. Giannis Antetokounmpo

5. Anthony Davis

4. James Harden

3. Kevin Durant

2. Stephen Curry

1. LeBron James

 

Michael Pina

VICE Sports Writer

10. Kyrie Irving

9. Damian Lillard

8. Russell Westbrook

7. Giannis Antetokounmpo

6. Kawhi Leonard

5. Anthony Davis

4. Stephen Curry

3. James Harden

2. Kevin Durant

1. LeBron James

 

Tony Jones

NBA Writer For Salt Lake Tribune

10. Chris Paul

9. Paul George

8. Giannis Antetokounmpo

7. Russell Westbrook

6. Anthony Davis

5. James Harden

4. Kawhi Leonard

3. Stephen Curry

2. Kevin Durant

1. LeBron James

 

Anonymous Current Player

10. Kyrie Irving

9. Damian Lillard

8. Russell Westbrook

7. Kawhi Leonard

6. Anthony Davis

5. Giannis Antetokounmpo

4. James Harden

3. Stephen Curry

2. Kevin Durant

1. LeBron James

 

Anonymous NBA Executive

10. Nikola Jokic

9. Kyrie Irving

8. Joel Embiid

7. Kawhi Leonard

6. Giannis Antetokounmpo

5. Anthony Davis

4. James Harden

3. Stephen Curry

2. Kevin Durant

1. LeBron James

 

Tim Cato

NBA Writer For The Athletic

10. Al Horford

9. Victor Oladipo

8. Damian Lillard

7. Joel Embiid

6. Giannis Antetokounmpo

5. James Harden

4. Kevin Durant

3. Anthony Davis

2. Stephen Curry

1. LeBron James

 

Josh Eberley

NBA Writer For NBA.com’s HoopMag

10. Jimmy Butler

9. Chris Paul

8. Russell Westbrook

7. Anthony Davis

6. James Harden

5. Giannis Antetokounmpo

4. Kawhi Leonard

3. Stephen Curry

2. Kevin Durant

1. LeBron James

 

Marcelas Howard

YouTube Basketball Host & Impersonator

10. Joel Embiid

9. Chris Paul

8. Russell Westbrook

7. Stephen Curry

6. Giannis Antetokoumpo

5. Kyrie Irving

4. James Harden

3. Anthony Davis

2. Kevin Durant

1. LeBron James

 

Paige Dimakos

Host For Draft Network, Co-Host of Cold-Taker Podcast

10. Chris Paul

9. Kyrie Irving

8. Russell Westbrook

7. James Harden

6. Anthony Davis

5. Giannis Antetokounmpo

4. Stephen Curry

3. Kawhi Leonard

2. Kevin Durant

1. LeBron James

 

Kristian Winfield

SB Nation NBA Reporter and Writer

10. Chris Paul

9. Jimmy Butler

8. Giannis Antetokoumpo

7. Russell Westbrook

6. James Harden

5. Stephen Curry

4. Kawhi Leonard

3. Anthony Davis

2. Kevin Durant

1. LeBron James

 

Chris Walder

NBA News Editor at The Score

10. Kyrie Irving

9. Joel Embiid

8. Russell Westbrook

7. Stephen Curry

6. Giannis Antetokounmpo

5. James Harden

4. Kawhi Leonard

3. Anthony Davis

2. Kevin Durant

1. LeBron James

  
Oliver has written and broken news about the NBA and sports for over eight years at publications such as Dime Magazine, UPROXX, Basketball Insiders and About.com. Oliver recently finished hosting his second season of the BIG3’s official podcast and show.