As part of our NBA preseason coverage I will breakdown the top players by division. Here are the best players in the Southeast Division.
PG John Wall- Washington Wizards- 16.3 pts. 8.0 ast. There really isn’t an elite point guard in this division. I put him ahead of Mario Chalmers for two reasons. One, he is the star of his team, and two, he has a significant amount of upside and Chalmers doesn’t on his current team. Wall was a complete non-factor from beyond the arc last year, which will need to improve this year.
SG- Dwayne Wade- Miami Heat- 22.1 ppg. 4.8 reb. Wade started to fade a bit down the stretch last year and that was on a shortened regular season. I expect him to come back strong this year and even out play LeBron for stretches. He will benefit from the addition of Ray Allen, who will keep defenses stretched out of the paint.
SF LeBron James- Miami Heat- 27.1 pts. 8.7 reb. James the best player in basketball right now after winning his first NBA championship and Olympic gold in the same year. I still think he can improve as a shooter, but he’s so physically imposing in the lane it might be unnecessary.
PF Josh Smith- Atlanta Hawks- 18.8 pts. 9.6 reb. Smith’s really stepped up and become the star everyone imagined him to be over the last couple years. He uses all of his physical gifts to dominate on both ends of the floor, and he’s still on the rise.
C Al Horford- Atlanta Hawks- 12.7 pts. 7.0 reb. Horford needs to stay healthy this year to complete one of the strongest frontcourts in the league. His rebounding ability is second only to Dwight Howard, and his offensive game might even be a little bit better.
Bench- Chris Bosh- Miami Heat- 18.0 pts. 7.9 reb. Bosh with the Raptors would be in the starting line-up, but his role with the Heat makes him take a backseat there and here. He’s still one of the best