Sports Illustrated released their annual list of Top 100 players entering the upcoming season. Where does a trio of Dallas Mavericks fall on the list?
With training camp starting in just a couple of weeks, Sports Illustrated took the opportunity to release their Top 100 players heading into the 2016-17 NBA season. Any time lists like these are made, arguments and discussions are bound to happen, but this list should bring some great discussions.
It didn’t take long for disagreements to start as the Portland Trail Blazers Twitter account already took issue with Damian Lillard outside of the top 20.
So with Lillard at 21, how many Mavericks are on the list and where are they ranked?
Wesley Matthews comes in as their 92nd ranked player headed into the season. I’ll admit, Matthews is a hard one to rank coming off somewhat of a weird season after his Achilles injury. But then you look at some players right in front of him in the rankings: Ryan Anderson, Kent Bazemore, and Amir Johnson.
I think I have to disagree with this one.
Andrew Bogut comes in at 83 as the Australian center comes off an impressive Olympic campaign. SI makes a point to note his health and the limited role he played in Golden State while praising his defensive abilities.
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Perhaps the only Mavs ranking I somewhat agree with is surprisingly Dirk Nowitzki coming in as the 31st ranked player. As Mavs fans, we are all used to Dirk never getting the respect he deserves, but after seeing the players that he is in front of on this list…I was quite impressed.
Chris Bosh, Rudy Gobert, Kemba Walker, Hassan Whiteside, Steven Adams and 63 other names were behind Dirk in the rankings. After putting up over 18 points a game at 37 years old last season, Nowitzki isn’t going anywhere just yet as he still has one of the best offensive games in the league.
See the full list of players on Sports Illustrated here.
One of the bigger surprises was the lack of Harrison Barnes on the list. There might not be a player with more wide-ranging opinions in the league, but having him outside of the Top 100 is a stretch for me.
Something tells me that these rankings might be a little higher by the end of the season.