Howard Smith-US PRESSWIRE
Jrue Holiday, Philadelphia 76ers
The Philadelphia 76ers point guard has been absolutely sensational during his fourth year in the NBA. He's teetering on the brink of averaging 20 points and 10 assists per game, although his scoring figures will likely decline if Andrew Bynum ever gets healthy.
He's listed at the top of this slide because his last name comes first alphabetically, but Holiday was also the first player included in the honorable mentions based on merit.
Brandon Jennings, Milwaukee Bucks
Even though he's shot inefficiently, Brandon Jennings has been a constant scoring threat for the Milwaukee Bucks while coupling his scoring production with quite a few dimes per game—6.5 to be exact.
When you're standing out in a backcourt that also includes Monta Ellis, you're in pretty good shape.
Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers
If defense didn't exist, Damian Lillard would probably work his way into the numbered part of the rankings. Unfortunately for him, it does.
As a result, he's going to have to keep working to truly establish himself among the elites. But yes, he's been this good.
Joakim Noah, Chicago Bulls
We know how good Joakim Noah is on defense, as he's an absolute game-changer on that end of the court. However, the big man's offense has been vastly improved this season.
Noah is averaging 13.3 points per game—he could stand to get more efficient—but it's his passing that truly stands out. With 4.3 assists per game, it's pretty clear that Noah has been quite the spark-plug for the Chicago Bulls in the paint.
Anderson Varejao, Cleveland Cavaliers
I'm not sure that anyone expected Anderson Varejao to lead the league in rebounds, much less to have 2.6 more boards per game than anyone else in the NBA.
He's still a secondary player on the offensive end of the court, but his constant hustle and willingness to go get the ball after each and every missed shot has made him an incredibly valuable player for the Kyrie Irving-less Cleveland Cavaliers.