Projecting the top 125 NBA players for 2022-23 season

Joel Embiid, Luka Doncic, ranking NBA players Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports
Joel Embiid, Luka Doncic, ranking NBA players Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports /
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(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

De'Aaron Fox. 65. player. 84. . G. Sacramento Kings

Ranking NBA players — 65. De’Aaron Fox, Kings

De’Aaron Fox put up impressive numbers following Tyrese Haliburton’s departure at the trade deadline. He remains an extremely productive lead guard who collapses the defense at will with his speed and aggression. Fox generates a lot of open looks for teammates, and he’s quite skilled at getting his own points around the rim. If he can improve the jumper, his stock will rise even higher.

. G. Boston Celtics. Malcolm Brogdon. 64. player. 18

Ranking NBA players — 64. Malcolm Brogdon, Celtics

The Celtics are stupid deep. Malcolm Brogdon is the early favorite for Sixth Man of the Year. He proved he could be the No. 1 scoring option on a fairly competitive team in Indiana, but now he’s returning to his role player roots. Think back to his days in Milwaukee, when Brogdon was threatening 50/40/90 every season on fewer touches. He’s efficient, he’s smart, and he’s a selfless teammate who should adjust quickly to his new role.

27. . G. New York Knicks. Jalen Brunson. 63. player

Ranking NBA players — 65. Jalen Brunson, Knicks

At long last, the New York Knicks have a starting-caliber point guard. There are defensive concerns with the smaller Brunson, but his offensive value to the Knicks is hard to overstate. He will make life easier on R.J. Barrett and Julius Randle, supplying the Knicks with a steady playmaking hand that was entirely absent the year before. He can also create his own offense, with a sublime in-between game at his disposal.

C. Orlando Magic. Wendell Carter Jr.. 62. player. 38.

Ranking NBA players — 62. Wendell Carter Jr., Magic

It wasn’t hard to miss what Wendell Carter Jr. accomplished in Orlando last season. The Magic were bad. Carter, however, looked the part of a cornerstone player. He scored from multiple spots on the floor, he crashed the glass prolifically, and he played flat-out stellar defense in the post. His blend of size, strength, and lateral quickness is not common, nor are his instincts on the defensive end. He can shut down high-level interior scorers better than most.

61. player. 69. . C. New Orleans Pelicans. Jonas Valanciunas

Ranking NBA players — 61. Jonas Valanciunas, Pelicans

Jonas Valanciunas does a little bit of everything. He’s immensely strong, with the footwork, touch, and power to dominate smaller defenders on the block. Put him on the elbow, and he can make every pass in the book. He’s also a reliable 3-point shooter, which is especially important now that Zion is rejoining the rotation. While not great defensively, Valanciunas can dominate the defensive glass and block his share of shots. The Pelicans aren’t a Big Three — they’re a Big Four.