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Jun 21, 2012; Miami, FL, USA; Miami Heat small forward LeBron James (6) drives to the basket as he is defended by Oklahoma City Thunder small forward Kevin Durant (35) during the fourth quarter of game five in the 2012 NBA Finals at the American Airlines Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE

NBA's Top Players

Yesterday, I took a look at what guys can make breakthroughs this coming season. But what about the top guys right now?  There’s some obvious choices, and I think the difference between those elite guys and everyone else is huge.  Also this coming week, I’ll look at top guys at each position, point guards, shooting guards, small forwards, power forwards, and centers.

Lebron James

Jun 21, 2012; Miami, FL, USA; Miami Heat small forward LeBron James (6) and Oklahoma City Thunder small forward Kevin Durant (35) go for a loose ball during the third quarter of game five in the 2012 NBA Finals at the American Airlines Arena. Mandatory Credit: Robert Mayer-US PRESSWIRE

Do I need to say anything more about Lebron James? I could say that the difference between how good James is and everyone else is huge.  Sure, Kevin Durant is great.  Kobe Bryant can still play.  Even teammate, Dwayne Wade, is up there in top star players.  Lebron James can do it all and play it all at any position.  There’s already been the ongoing debate of Lebron and Jordan, and now that James has a championship, that might be fuel for the fire.  If Lebron wins number two, and can get close to averaging a triple double, like I think he can, that would bring some critics over to his side.

Kevin Durant

Jun 17, 2012; Miam, FL, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder small forward Kevin Durant (35) is guarded by Miami Heat small forward LeBron James (6) during the fourth quarter in game three in the 2012 NBA Finals at the American Airlines Arena. Miami won 91-85. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-US PRESSWIRE

The silky smooth shooter who has length that looks to just go on for ages is up there for the top of the top.  I love watching this guy shooting because his form is perfect.  You feel like everything shot is going in, and he makes it look so easy.  He can score at will as he’s been the league’s leading scorer for the past three years.  If it weren’t for Lebron’s season last year, you’re looking at an MVP for Durant at 23 years old.  What more can he do to get up there?  Possibly improve his defensive game.  That’s the area, where I don’t hear his name mentioned a lot.  This coming season should be his for MVP.

Chris Paul

May 13, 2012; Memphis, TN, USA; Los Angeles Clippers power forward Blake Griffin (32) gestures to point guard Chris Paul (3) during the first half of game seven in the Western Conference quarterfinals of the 2012 NBA Playoffs against the Memphis Grizzlies at FedEx Forum. Mandatory Credit: Spruce Derden-US PRESSWIRE

Here’s one of the few true point guards, who can look for guys first, and still get his own points when needed. He’s also a defensive player, and showed that by leading the league in steals.  He was able to step up for the Clippers, and get third in MVP voting.  Quite the turnaround for him after an off year in New Orleans.  Another season working with Blake Griffin should help out both guys.

Derrick Rose

Apr 28, 2012; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose (1) brings the ball down the court during the first quarter in the Eastern Conference quarterfinals of the 2012 NBA Playoffs against the Philadelphia 76ers at the United Center. Mandatory Credit: Dennis Wierzbicki-US PRESSWIRE

This is someone that I think people forget about as he was injured for a good part of last season and then got injured in the post season. But there’s no denying that the Bulls are not the same team without him. It’s amazing to think they finished up with the top record in the NBA without Rose. But the playoffs showed how much he was needed. He’s such an aggressive player that even coming back I don’t think he’ll change his game. He’s a guy out there that really leads the team.  He’s got a killer instinct and he can play his position quite well.

 

Who would you say is the cream of the crop in the NBA?

Tags: Chris Paul Derrick Rose Kevin Durant LeBron James

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