Ranking every NBA team’s Big 3

Joel Embiid, Tyrese Maxey, James Harden, Sixers (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Joel Embiid, Tyrese Maxey, James Harden, Sixers (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
(Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

. . . Los Angeles Lakers. 12. team. 20

12. Lakers — LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Patrick Beverley

We still cannot comfortably write off the Lakers because of LeBron James and Anthony Davis. The former put up MVP-caliber numbers last season, while the latter is arguably the best second option the in the NBA when he’s operating at full strength. Injuries and age have played an outsized role in LA’s last couple of seasons, but there’s still genuine star power at the top of the roster. Patrick Beverley is by no means a star, but he does provide plenty of grit and 3-point shooting while playing within himself (something Russell Westbrook, who is excluded from this list in Beverley’s favor, does not).

110. . . . Miami Heat. 11. team

11. Heat — Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, Kyle Lowry

Miami has already been written off by the majority of NBA fans despite making two conference finals appearances in three years with Jimmy Butler. Age is starting to become a factor, but Butler steps up to the plate in big games better than anyone. Bam Adebayo is still getting better and he’s already a perennial DPOY candidate. Kyle Lowry took a step back in his first season with Miami, but only slightly. Injuries made him a shell of himself in the playoffs, but a healthy Lowry can still impact winning in a big way. He was near the top of the league in assists last season and you won’t find many smarter or more engaged defenders at the lead guard spot.

86. . . . Minnesota Timberwolves. 10. team

10. Timberwolves — Rudy Gobert, Karl-Anthony Towns, Anthony Edwards

The Wolves spent big on Rudy Gobert in an effort to finally field a contender around Karl-Anthony Towns. It should work. Minnesota is going to win a lot of regular season games, and while the postseason outlook of the “Twin Towers” look is murkier, Gobert’s postseason track record is much better than his detractors would have you believe. Essentially, Minnesota will pair the best rim protector of the last decade-plus with arguably the best shooting 7-footer in league history. Then there’s Anthony Edwards, who is the prime breakout candidate in the NBA next season. It’s a matter of when, not if Edwards’ All-Star leap is coming.