The Top Ten NBA Players Right Now in the 2014-2015 Season

The 2014-2015 NBA season has been loaded with storylines so far. There’s Klay Thompson unloading 52 in a game, and then there’s his bro Steph Curry unloading 51 a little more than a week later. There’s Damian Lillard’s getting snubbed as a reserve, as a sub for Kobe, and then finally getting named an All-Star after he sounded off on Instagram. Of course, there’s the news that not one, not two, not three, but FOUR ATL HAWKS (kakaw!!!) are going to play in the All-Star Game!!! And, well, what would this season be without the almost daily dose of melodrama from the Cleveland Cavaliers?

Westbrook, Gasol, Harden, Davis, and... Whitside?! Are all of them in our top ten?!

It’s all been hella fun and crazy, which is why I wanted to look at something that has me going, “Well, will you look at that?” I wanted to see who have actually been performing at the top of their games right now in the Association, right now that we’re approaching what, to many, is the halfway point of the season (it really isn’t, though, because all teams will have played 50+ games by this weekend).

Without further ado, here they are – the top ten players RIGHT NOW in the 2014-2015 NBA regular season (this is based on the Player Efficiency ratings as calculated by as of the evening of February 11, 2015 – Manila time):

10. Nikola Vucevic (ORL) – 19.4ppg, 11.2rpg, 1.9apg, 53.5 FG%, 23.9 EFF
- Let it sink in that Vucevic is the only guy on this top ten list who is NOT an All-Star this season. When one looks at his production, though, one just has to wonder about what else this kid can do to get the nod? Sure, the Magic suck, but don’t let that cloud the fact that Vucevic has just been superb. Sure, eating vanilla ice cream would probably be more fun than watching Vucevic in NYC, but the thing is he deserves to be there and he isn’t. Boo.

9. LaMarcus Aldridge (POR) – 23.7ppg, 10.3rpg, 1.8apg, 1.2bpg, 87.0 FT%, 24.5 EFF
- His recent injury notwithstanding, LMA has been terrific for the Blazers, who are among the top four teams in the West as of this writing. I mean, he’s just a machine. He has scored fewer than 15 points in only four games this season, and there’s still no stopping that step-back J. Definitely one of toughest one-on-one match-ups in the block bar none.

8. Chris Paul (LAC) – 17.8ppg, 4.8rpg, 9.7apg, 1.9spg, 1.6 triples per game, 38.5 3pt%, 88.5 FT%, 24.6 EFF
- A lot of people are hating on CP3, and for good reason, too, but that shouldn’t muddle up the reality of his awesome production. Paul is no longer as cat-quick as he used to be, but he’s still as efficient as hell. The Clips may go through a rough patch due to Blake Griffin’s injury, but CP3 should be able to carry them through enough games to remain a legit threat in the Western Conference.

7. Russell Westbrook (OKC) – 25.9ppg, 6.3rpg, 7.6apg, 2.2spg, 1.0 triple per game, 25.2 EFF
- For the first time ever, I think OKC looks like Westbrook’s team. Yes, KD is still the MVP till he gets dethroned by one of the guys further down on this list, but the fact is, this season, it’s been Westbrook really carrying the Thunder. If in the past, OKC has had Durant as #1 and Jet Zero as #2, now I believe it’s more of a 1A and 1B scenario. Still hoping they make the postseason.

6. LeBron James (CLE) – 26.0ppg, 5.6rpg, 7.3apg, 1.5spg, 1.6 triples per game, 49.1 FG%, 25.3 EFF
- It’s been a tale of two LeBrons this season, with post-vacation LeBron looking more and more like his best self while early-season-over-the-hump LeBron slowly fades into the footnote section. The Cavs have been winning, and winning pretty, since the King’s return, and I think they have more than a fair chance of still finishing among the top three teams in the East.

5. Pau Gasol (CHI) – 18.4ppg, 12.2rpg, 2.9apg, 2.1bpg, 49.5 FG%, 25.6 EFF
- The super Spaniard is putting double-doubles again, he’s in the All-Star Game again, and, well, he’s with a title contender again. It’s been a fairy tale of a season so far for Gasol, which is just great, especially after his Spanish squad got the boot a little too early in the 2014 FIBA World Cup. Oh, and I love how he kinda sorta endorsed Manila to be the host of the 2019 FIBA World Cup.

4. Steph Curry (GSW) – 23.6ppg, 4.7rpg, 7.9apg, 2.1spg, 48.3 FG%, 40.4 3pt%, 3.2 triples per game, 89.7 FT%, 26.3 EFF
- If the season ended today, Curry would be the hands-down sexy pick to be league MVP, and there’s good reason, too. For most of the season, his Warriors have been the best team out there. He’s one of the most explosive and exciting players to watch, and, for the first time in a looong time, GSW may just prove to be more than a dark horse. If Curry leads the Warriors in winning the West, making the Finals, or copping the title, then, golly, we’ve got the new face of the NBA right here.

3. DeMarcus Cousins (SAC) – 23.6ppg, 12.3rpg, 3.3apg, 1.4spg, 1.6bpg, 26.6 EFF
- He’s still pouty as hell, and it didn’t help that his favorite coach just got sacked, but beyond all the sound and fury, Cousins is certainly the planet’s best center. Oh, sorry, I meant POINT CENTER. In a league full of hybrids (stretch four, point forward, or combo guard, anyone?), Cousins has redefined the slotman spot to an unprecedented degree.

2. James Harden (HOU) – 27.7ppg, 5.7rpg, 6.8apg, 2.0spg, 2.7 triples per game, 39.0 3pt%, 27.9 EFF
- Everyone thought the Rockets would stink this season, but they didn’t. And then Dwight Howard went down with an injury. They still didn’t stink. They went out and got, gasp, Josh Smith. Miraculously, they still didn’t stink. Props, all of it, goes to the trigger-happy Harden, who has just been absolutely spectacular. He has become so good that, man, had OKC just kept him, maybe they would’ve won AT LEAST two titles by now.

1. Anthony Davis (NOP) – 24.5ppg, 10.3rpg, 1.7apg, 1.5spg, 2.7bpg, 55.1 FG%, 30.7 EFF
- The Brow beats the Beard. Yes, the Pelicans are still outside looking in when it comes to the West’s playoff picture, but, by far, Davis has been, individually, the best player of the 2014-2015 season. He’s impossible to guard around the bucket, impossible to stop when he’s in full power mode, and he’s even added a reliable outside shot! He stuffs the sheet in fantasy leagues from Manila to Mumbai and to California, and he has also been stuffing the sheet in real life. Curry might be the sexy MVP choice, but, especially if New Orleans makes the postseason, Davis is the correct choice.

Outside looking in (ranked 11-15):
Blake Griffin (LAC) – 23.7 EFF
DeAndre Jordan (LAC) – 22.8 EFF
Marc Gasol (MEM) – 22.7 EFF
John Wall (WAS) – 22.0 EFF
Zach Randolph (MEM) – 21.7 EFF

*Kevin Durant (OKC) was not included despite being #5 overall because he’s played only 25 games so far for the Thunder. That’s just too few for me to consider, even if he is the reigning MVP.

Next Post »
0 Comment