Sixers: Ranking James Harden, Tyrese Maxey, and every NBA backcourt

James Harden, Tyrese Maxey, Sixers (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
James Harden, Tyrese Maxey, Sixers (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

. . . Miami Heat. 24. team. 110

24. Kyle Lowry & Tyler Herro, Heat

It feels like Tyler Herro will finally graduate from his sixth man role to the starting five next season. He has obviously earned it, but the talented scorer will have to prove he can stay on the floor defensively. There are other quality options lurking in Miami’s rotation — most notably Victor Oladipo, who’s gearing up for his first full NBA season in a while. Meanwhile, Kyle Lowry is still a rock-solid floor general and two-way playmaker who is more willing than most stars to sacrifice his body to win games. Age is starting to catch up to Lowry, but depending on how Herro holds up in the starting five, we could need to bump Miami up a few spots next time we do this list.

. . Indiana Pacers. 23. team. 100.

23. Tyrese Haliburton & Buddy Hield, Pacers

Tyrese Haliburton could garner All-Star consideration as soon as this season. He elevated his game in a big way last season, especially after arriving in Indiana. He has the keys to the franchise, and his blend of team-oriented playmaking and improved self-creation could lead to some big numbers in year three. Buddy Hield is plenty flawed, but he’s still one of the best 3-point shooters in NBA history in terms of yearly volume. That has its benefits, especially when Haliburton is so good at setting Hield up.

team. 64. . . . Detroit Pistons. 22

22. Jaden Ivey & Cade Cunningham, Pistons

Cade Cunningham is about to take off into the stratosphere. It took him a couple months to get going as a rookie, but the former No. 1 pick eventually found his rhythm. The Pistons were compellingly competitive late in the season, and Cunningham showcased the full breadth of his offensive skill set. He can do it all. Now, he’s joined by another top-five pick in Jaden Ivey, perhaps the most explosive and electric guard to enter the NBA since Ja Morant. He can take pressure off of Cade’s shoulders, while also benefiting from Cade’s playmaking by attacking off the catch.