This will be the seventh of a 10-part series ranking the Top 100 players in the NBA for the 2023-24 season.
Keep in mind, these are projections for the upcoming season. So does track record matter? Absolutely. Does last year matter? It matters the most. This list is based on what the players have shown they can do during the previous three years and how much it will carry over to this upcoming year.
Without further ado, here are the Top 40-31 players for the 2023-24 season.
Click here for a full archive of Driscoll’s Top 100.
40. Bradley Beal
Probably the best third option in the league, Beal has been in a weird place for a couple of years now since John Wall went down with an injury. He was never good enough to be a No. 1 option on a team that could make the second round, but his team was still good enough to where they were not one of the worst teams in the league. Beal is now in a spot where he has two superstars surrounding him, and while it will be the best team he has been on, he will also be in a role where he has to sacrifice more than ever.
39. DeMar DeRozan
The 34-year-old All-Star comes in at No. 39. Despite playing on a disappointing team, the past couple of years, DeRozan has been super solid. Last year, he averaged 25 points and five assists per game while amassing a 59 percent True Shooting Percentage. The Bulls are not true threats to win anything this year, but DeRozan has shown very few signs of slowing down, so do not be surprised if you see him make another All-Star Game (or even All-NBA Team) this year.
38. Darius Garland
Despite being a major playoff disappointment alongside teammate Donovan Mitchell, Garland deserves his flowers for how he has performed the past two seasons. He has been an elite playmaker and three-point shooter and plays very good perimeter defense. Last season, he averaged 22 points and eight assists per game while shooting 41 percent from three. Mitchell deserves the most credit for leading the Cavs to their first playoff run, but Garland deserves a whole lot of credit as well.
37. Jrue Holiday
The 2021 champion has a new home for the 2023-24 season. Despite being beloved by his fans and teammates (especially Giannis Antetokounmpo), the Bucks could not pass on the chance to trade for Damian Lillard, so they had to give up their second star to get him. With this being said, Holiday was not left out to dry because, less than a week later, he was traded to the Celtics, where he will likely have as good of a chance to win as if he stayed in Milwaukee. He will be in a slightly smaller role than he was last year, so it will be interesting to see how Boston utilizes him on a very deep roster.
“Jrue Holiday can’t shoot” pic.twitter.com/twVzBPamGk
— mr.perfect 🍀 (@emswym) October 19, 2023
36. Jaren Jackson Jr.
The 2023 Defensive Player of the Year comes in at No. 36. Despite only playing 63 games last season, Jackson was so good in the games he played that he won DPOY. He averaged three blocks per game, and every single advanced stat suggests he was one the best defenders in the league. Jackson also shot 36 percent from three last year. His offensive role will likely grow a little bit for the first 25 games without Ja Morant. It will be fascinating to see if we get two different versions of Jackson this year.
35. Brandon Ingram
Ingram only appeared in 45 games last year, but he was debatably playing his best basketball for the time he was on the court. He averaged 25 points and six assists per game while shooting 39 percent from three. What holds him back is his below-average defense and inability to stay healthy. It certainly does not help that his co-star, Zion Williamson, is even worse at staying healthy than Ingram is. If the two of them can stay on the court this year, their ceiling might be making the NBA Finals, but unfortunately, that’s a big “if.”
34. Pascal Siakam
Despite playing on worse teams, Siakam has been super solid the past two years. Last season, he averaged 24 points, eight rebounds, and six assists per game. I, however, expect him to take a slight step back due to off-the-court issues. He is not to blame for this situation at all, but Toronto wants to hit the reset button sooner rather than later, and Siakam just wants to stay home. I would not be surprised if towards the end of the year the Raptors started drawing up fewer plays for Siakam and more for Scottie Barnes. Regardless of what happens, Siakam is still an All-Star-caliber player who he has not shown many signs of regression.
33. Julius Randle
Does anyone else think it’s weird that after Randle retires he is going to have at least two All-NBA selections to his name? I sure do. After dropping off big time from 2021 to 2022, he went back to his All-Star form in 2023. Randle averaged 25 points and 10 rebounds per game while shooting 34 percent from three. He fell off big in the playoffs, but this should not take away from how great he was in the regular season. Despite not being the best player on his team anymore, he has the potential to be one of the better No. 2 options in the league if the Knicks win another playoff series.
JULIUS RANDLE POSTER 😤 pic.twitter.com/SNdnb9fEvb
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) October 19, 2023
32. Draymond Green
The four-time champion comes in at No. 32. Sure, his offense has taken a hit, but he can guard any position just as well as anyone else in the league, and he anchors defenses like nobody else. At the end of the day, I value winning. Has he had it easier than most? Sure. But come playoff time, you need guys who can play defense and guys who know how to win, which is exactly what Green does.
31. Jamal Murray
The Robin on the 2023 NBA Championship team comes in at No. 31. Despite being doubted by too many people (myself included), Murray thrived in his role as the No. 2 on a championship team. Though Jokic had one of the best playoff runs in recent history, I honestly do not know how far the Nuggets would have advanced without Murray. He is slightly lower just because we have not seen him play at an All-Star level for an entire season yet, but if he has another elite playoff run, it sure would be hard to leave him out of the top 25.
Jamal Murray tonight:
21 Minutes pic.twitter.com/EZbX5RvOeX
— Hoop Central (@TheHoopCentral) October 16, 2023
Main Image Credit: