Every offseason, ESPN goes through and ranks the top 100 players in the NBA, and every offseason we all get mad about it. It ultimately doesn’t matter, but it sort of does, at least in terms of recognition. After all, fans want to see their favorite players properly rated and players don’t want to be overlooked.
Of course, when rating the top 100 players, there are going to be plenty of controversies, and this year is no different, with several blatantly bad player rankings. Here are five of the most head-scratching NBA player rankings in ESPN’s Top 100.
NBA player rankings #5: Dejounte Murray listed at 42
Dejounte Murray, (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Now that Dejounte Murray is a member of the Atlanta Hawks, the general consensus is that he’ll take a back seat to fellow All-Star guard Trae Young. That may be true, but he’s still the same player that put up huge numbers in San Antonio last season and could find a different way to be equally impactful in Atlanta.
Last season, Murray averaged 21.2 points, 8.3 rebounds, 9.2 assists, and a league-leading 2.1 steals per game. In Atlanta, his scoring will likely dip, as will his assists, while his rebounding and ability to force turnovers will likely be unaffected.
His well-rounded game is better suited as a second option anyway, and despite some fit issues with Trae Young, he could still be in line for another all-star caliber year. That would make his ESPN rank of 42 seem quite low since he’d be both an All-star and the second-best player on a good playoff team.
In regard to where Murray should actually be listed, the late twenties would be more accurate. After all, there aren’t many guards who can defend like he can, not to mention pass and rebound like he can either. He’s only 25, so there’s also the possibility that he will continue to get better next season.