NBA Starting Five Predictions and Rankings

The Kyrie Irving – Isaiah Thomas trade has mixed up the starting lineups for the top two teams in the East. What will the NBA starting fives look like now? And where do they rank amongst each other?

30. Brooklyn Nets
PG- D’Angelo Russell
SG- Allen Crabbe
SF- DeMarre Carroll
PF- Rondae Hollis-Jefferson
C- Timofey Mozgov
They improved from last year, but not by much and still suck.

29. Sacramento Kings
PG- George Hill
SG- Buddy Hield
SF- Garrett Temple
PF- Skal Labissiere
C- Willie Cauley-Stein
The additions of De’Aaron Fox, Vince Carter, and Zach Randolph provide depth but don’t really improve this starting lineup.

28. Atlanta Hawks
PG- Dennis Schroder
SG- Kent Bazemore
SF- Taurean Prince
PF- Ersan Ilyasova
C- Dewayne Dedmon
From this lineup, it’s clear to see that the Hawks are in full rebuilding mode now.

27. Chicago Bulls
PG- Kris Dunn
SG- Dwyane Wade
SF- Zach LaVine
PF- Lauri Markkanen
C- Robin Lopez
An aging Dwyane Wade and a few young projects will not take this team near the playoffs.

26. Orlando Magic
PG- Elfrid Payton
SG- Evan Fournier
SF- Aaron Gordon
PF- Jonathan Isaac
C- Nikola Vucevic
The addition of rookie Jonathan Isaac won’t do much to help this starting five.

25. Indiana Pacers
PG- Darren Collison
SG- Victor Oladipo
SF- Bojan Bogdanovic
PF- Thaddeus Young
C- Myles Turner
Losing Paul George hurts the Pacers a lot, but they a probable breakout season from Myles Turner to fall back on.

24. Phoenix Suns
PG- Eric Bledsoe
SG- Devin Booker
SF- Josh Jackson
PF- Marquese Chriss
C- Tyson Chandler
The Suns have a very solid backcourt, but Jackson and Chriss will need to mature a lot.

23. Detroit Pistons
PG- Reggie Jackson
SG- Avery Bradley
SF- Tobias Harris
PF- Jon Leuer
C- Andre Drummond
Avery Bradley will be a great player for Detroit, but Jon Leuer is a massive downgrade from Marcus Morris.

22. Los Angeles Lakers
PG- Lonzo Ball
SG- Kentavious Caldwell-Pope
SF- Brandon Ingram
PF- Julius Randle
C- Brook Lopez
Lonzo Ball and Brook Lopez will be an exciting duo to see, but the others are overhyped and just not good.

21. Memphis Grizzlies
PG- Mike Conley
SG- Ben McLemore
SF- Chandler Parsons
PF- Brandan Wright
C- Marc Gasol
Besides Conley and Gasol, the rest of this lineup is average at best, even if Parsons has a bounce-back year.

20. New York Knicks
PG- Frank Ntilikina
SG- Tim Hardaway Jr.
SF- Carmelo Anthony
PF- Kristaps Porzingis
C- Willy Hernangomez
The Knicks are slowly improving but will have to wait a year until they’re back into playoff contention.

19. Philadelphia 76ers
PG- Markelle Fultz
SG- JJ Redick
SF- Ben Simmons
PF- Dario Saric
C- Joel Embiid
This team is young and has major upside but are extremely injury prone and haven’t accomplished much in the NBA.

18. New Orleans Pelicans
PG- Rajon Rondo
SG- Jrue Holiday
SF- Solomon Hill
PF- Anthony Davis
C- DeMarcus Cousins
The best front court in the league could be successful if Rajon Rondo plays like he’s in the playoffs.

17. Dallas Mavericks
PG- Dennis Smith Jr.
SG- Wesley Matthews
SF- Harrison Barnes
PF- Dirk Nowitzki
C- Nerlens Noel
The Mavs have a pretty decent starting five mixed with youth and experience. But what will happen in Noel leaves or is injured again?

16. Miami Heat
PG- Goran Dragic
SG- Dion Waiters
SF- Justise Winslow
PF- James Johnson
C- Hassan Whiteside
Justise Winslow takes his place back in this starting five which will definitely overachieve under Spoelstra.

15. Utah Jazz
PG- Ricky Rubio
SG- Rodney Hood
SF- Joe Ingles
PF- Derrick Favors
C- Rudy Gobert
As you can tell by their lineup, the Jazz are good, but not good enough to pose a threat. Hayward will be missed.

14. Portland Trail Blazers
PG- Damian Lillard
SG- CJ McCollum
SF- Maurice Harkless
PF- Noah Vonleh
C- Jusuf Nurkic
A great backcourt and a decent center accompanied by two players who haven’t reached their potentials highlights this lineup.

13. Milwaukee Bucks
PG- Malcolm Brogdon
SG- Khris Middleton
SF- Tony Snell
PF- Giannis Antetokounmpo
C- Thon Maker
Malcolm Brogdon is a great guard and the Greek Freak is a beast, but Tony Snell and Thon Maker have no business starting.

12. Charlotte Hornets
PG- Kemba Walker
SG- Malik Monk
SF- Nicolas Batum
PF- Marvin Williams
C- Dwight Howard
Expect rookie Malik Monk to remove draft letdown Michael Kidd-Gilchrist from the starting five and provide a scoring boost.

11. Denver Nuggets
PG- Jamal Murray
SG- Gary Harris
SF- Wilson Chandler
PF- Paul Millsap
C- Nikola Jokic
All-star forward Paul Millsap joins a starting lineup that looks likely to have a breakout year.

10. Los Angeles Clippers
PG- Patrick Beverley
SG- Milos Teodosic
SF- Danilo Gallinari
PF- Blake Griffin
C- DeAndre Jordan
Beverley, Teodosic, and Gallo could very well go farther in the playoffs than the Clippers did with Paul and Redick.

9. Washington Wizards
PG- John Wall
SG- Bradley Beal
SF- Otto Porter Jr.
PF- Markieff Morris
C- Marcin Gortat
This very strong all-around lineup remains unchanged and would be higher if other teams hadn’t improved.

8. Toronto Raptors
PG- Kyle Lowry
SG- DeMar DeRozan
SF- CJ Miles
PF- Serge Ibaka
C- Jonas Valanciunas
CJ Miles is a scoring improvement over DeMarre Carroll, and the Raptors are looking dangerous after resigning Lowry and Ibaka.

7. San Antonio Spurs
PG- Patty Mills
SG- Danny Green
SF- Kawhi Leonard
PF- LaMarcus Aldridge
C- Pau Gasol
The pure dominance of Kawhi Leonard ranks this starting five over the Raptors and Wizards.

6. Oklahoma City Thunder
PG- Russell Westbrook
SG- Andre Roberson
SF- Paul George
PF- Patrick Patterson
C- Steven Adams
The defense of Roberson and Adams will go well with the scoring of Westbrook and George. OKC would be higher if it wasn’t for Patterson.

5. Minnesota Timberwolves
PG- Jeff Teague
SG- Jimmy Butler
SF- Andrew Wiggins
PF- Taj Gibson
C- Karl-Anthony Towns
With this lineup, it’s clear to see why the Timberwolves will most likely get to the playoffs for the first time since 2004.

4. Houston Rockets
PG- Chris Paul
SG- James Harden
SF- Trevor Ariza
PF- Ryan Anderson
C- Clint Capela
Get ready for the Chris Paul and James Harden show this year. Their partnership will be accompanied by three other good starters.

3. Boston Celtics
PG- Kyrie Irving
SG- Jaylen Brown
SF- Gordon Hayward
PF- Marcus Morris
C- Al Horford
The Celtics will miss Isaiah Thomas and Avery Bradley, but the additions of Kyrie Irving and Gordon Hayward more than make up for the loss. Plus, Crowder is gone.

2. Cleveland Cavaliers
PG- Isaiah Thomas
SG- JR Smith
SF- LeBron James
PF- Kevin Love
C- Tristan Thompson
The King of the Fourth will take over at point guard. Enjoy this lineup, Cavs fans. It’s probably going to be the last year with LeBron.

1. Golden State Warriors
PG- Stephen Curry
SG- Klay Thompson
SF- Kevin Durant
PF- Draymond Green
C- Zaza Pachulia
The defending champions come back with the same starting five as last year. Was there ever any doubt who would be first?



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