Which Philadelphia 76ers Players Did ESPN's #NBArank Over and Undervalue?
Each year a panel of NBA writers for ESPN ranks all 500 players in the NBA on a scale from 1-10. Then, ESPN averages each player's rating and creates a list in order of the highest-rated NBA player (LeBron James) to the lowest-rated NBA player (Eddy Curry).
Every year there are people who disagree with portions of the rankings, but for the most part they are pretty accurate. So, lets take a look at the 2012 #NBArank rankings for the Philadelphia 76ers.
The team's highest-rated player is the Sixers' marquee acquisition of the offseason in Andrew Bynum, who is ranked 13th. The team's lowest-rated player is first-round pick Arnett Moultrie, who is ranked 400th.
Here are four Sixers who are either too high or too low on ESPN's 2012 #NBArank.
Evan Turner: Undervalued
2012 #NBArank: 119
2011-2012 Per Game Statistics: 9.4 points, 2.8 assists, 5.8 rebounds, 12.69 PER
In the 2011-12 season, Evan Turner finally cracked the starting lineup in the 76ers' rotation. He was a huge upgrade over previous starting shooting guard Jodie Meeks and was vital to the Sixers' postseason success.
However, Turner still needs to improve his jump shot if he wants to take the next step. Turner and Holiday could become a very good backcourt if they progress next season.
Turner is underrated in this year's #NBArank. He easily could be ahead of the following players who are ranked above him: Spencer Hawes, Mario Chalmers and Shane Battier. Although Battier and Chalmers were contributors to the Heat's championship season, they are very overrated in #NBArank simply because they play for the Heat.
Turner has improved in each of his two years in the league, so look for him to rise in next year's #NBArank.
Spencer Hawes: Overvalued
2012 #NBArank: 118
2011-2012 Per Game Statistics: 9.6 points, 7.3 rebounds, 2.6 assists, 18.2 PER
Spencer Hawes was a much-improved player last season for the Philadelphia 76ers, posting career-highs in rebounds, assists, and player efficiency rating.
However, Hawes got killed on the defensive end all year long. According to 82games.com, Hawes allowed his opponents to post an outstanding 19.5 player efficiency rating; the average PER for centers last season was 12.7.
So although he earned a very good PER, Hawes allowed his opponent a 1.3 higher PER than he was getting on a nightly basis.
His defensive struggles were put in the spotlight during the Sixers' series with the Boston Celtics. Coach Doug Collins simply could not afford to keep Hawes on the floor, because Kevin Garnett was abusing him down low. With the addition of Andrew Bynum, Collins is moving Hawes to the power forward position and is hoping he will have an easier time guarding opposing power forwards than centers.
A few players who are ranked lower than Hawes but should be ranked higher than him are Evan Turner, Gordon Hayward and Carl Landry.
Thaddeus Young: Undervalued
2012 #NBArank: 91
2011-2012 Per Game Statistics: 12.8 points, 5.2 rebounds, 1.2 assists, 18.93 PER
Thaddeus Young is one of the best bench players in the entire NBA. He provides immediate scoring and energy off the bench, and is a very valuable player.
However, Young has no real position, which hurts his production. He cannot shoot well enough to be a small forward and is too undersized to play power forward. Collins often plays Young at power forward because he is a matchup nightmare on offense, but he struggles defending power forwards.
Still, Young should be rated higher on this year's #NBArank. Here are some players who are rated above Young but should be ranked below him: DeAndre Jordan, O.J. Mayo and George Hill.
Royal Ivey: Overvalued
2012 #NBArank: 375
2011-2012 Per Game Statistics: 2.1 points, .3 assists, .7 rebounds, 4.66 PER
With Royal Ivey, you cannot rate him based on his stats because he only played 10 minutes per game.
However, Ivey is no more than a 12th man on an NBA team's roster.
It is hard to nitpick at the players ranked worse than 300 in ESPN's #NBArank, but Ivey should definitely be lower on these rankings. Some players who are ranked lower than Ivey but should be ranked higher are Andrew Nicholson, Tony Wroten and Jonny Flynn.