Sports Illustrated lists their 100 top NBA players of 2019 (full list)

It’s that time of year again. We’re in mid-September which is about a month out from the start of the NBA season.

We’re dusting off the cobwebs from rumors, trades, and watching Instagram videos of high schoolers pulling crossovers and superstars scrimmaging. Now that we’re a few weeks out, it’s also the time when the big sports media sites start making predictions, making odds at making odds on sites like bettingtop10 USA as well as creating controversial lists of the best players of the upcoming season.

Everyone loves lists, but no matter what list it is, one ever agrees on where and when their favorite players should appear on them. One of our most popular posts from the last year was when SLAM created their 100 best NBA players of all-time for that reason. And though Sports Illustrated isn’t quite getting that deep into the annals, the global sports magazine published out their full list of their top 100 NBA players for the 2019 season.  The problem with these lists is that they’re very rarely listed out… in a list.

nba player collage 2018-19

SI’s Top 100 NBA Players of 2019

Sports Illustrated's Top 100 NBA Players of 2019
Rank Player Team
1 LeBron James Los Angeles Lakers
2 Kevin Durant Golden State Warriors
3 Stephen Curry Golden State Warriors
4 James Harden Houston Rockets
5 Anthony Davis New Orleans Pelicans
6  Giannis Antetokounmpo Milwaukee Bucks
7 Russell Westbrook  Oklahoma City Thunder
8 Chris Paul Houston Rockets
9 Joel Embiid Philadelphia Sixers
10 Jimmy Butler Minnesota Timberwolves
11 Paul George Oklahoma City Thunder
12 Kawhi Leonard Toronto Raptors
13 Draymond Green Golden State rriors
14 Rudy Gobert Utah Jaz
15 Damian Lillard Portland Trailblazers
16 Al Horford Boston Celtic
17 Kyrie Irving Boston Celtics
18 Nikola Jokic Denver Nuggets
19 Karl Anthony-Towns Minnesota Timberwolves
20 Victor Oladipo Indiana Pacers
21 LaMarcus Aldridge San Antonio Spurs
22 Klay Thompson Golden State Warriors
23 Kyle Lowry Toronto Raptors
24 John Wall Washington Wizards
25 Gordon Hayward Boston Celtics
26 Ben Simmons Philadelphia Sixers
27 Bradley Beal Washington Wizards
28 Khris Middletown Milwaukee Bucks
29 Jrue Holiday New Orleans Pelicans
30 DeMar DeRozan San Antonio Spurs
31 Kevin Love Cleveland Cavs
32 Kemba Walker Charlotte Hornets
33 CJ McCollum Portland Trailblazers
34 Donovan Mitchell Utah Jazz
35 Clint Capela Houston Rockets
36 Mike Conley Jr Memphis Grizzlies
37 Paul Millsap Denver Nuggets
38 Steven Adams Okalhoma City Thunder
39 Jayson Tatum Boston Celtics
40 Marc Gasol Memphis Grizzlies
41 Blake Griffin Detroit Pistons
42 Otto Porter Washington Wizards
43 DeAndre Jordan Dallas Mavericks
44 Gary Harris Denver Nuggets
45 Goran Dragic Miami Heat
46 Andre Drummond Detroit Pistons
47 Jaylen Brown Boston Celtics
48 Robert Covington Philadelphia Sixers
49 Eric Gordon Houston Rockets
50 Devin Booker Phoenix Suns
51 Derrick Favors Utah Jazz
52 Kristaps Porzingis New York Knicks
53 Eric Bledsoe Milwaukee Bucks
54 Dario Saric Philadelphia 76ers
55 Jamal Murray Denver Nuggets
56 Joe Ingles Utah Jazz
57 Ricky Rubio Utah Jazz
58 Jeff Teague Minnesota Timberwolves
59 Harrison Barnes Dallas Mavericks
60 Nikola Mirotic New Orleans Pelicans
61 Lou Williams Los Angeles Clippers
62 J.J. Redick Philadelphia 76ers
63 Jonas Valanciunas Toronto Raptors
64 Jusef Nurkic Portland Trailblazers
65 Tobias Harris Los Angeles Clippers
66 Aaron Gordon Orlando Magic
67 Myles Turner Indiana Pacers
68 DeMarcus Cousins Golden State Warriors
69 Dwight Howard Washington Wizards
70 Will Barton Denver Nuggets
71 Josh Richardson Miami Heat
72 Julius Randle New Orleans Pelicans
73 Nicolas Batum Charlotte Hornets
74 Andrew Wiggins Minnesota Timberwolves
75 Brandon Ingram Los Angeles Lakers
76 Thaddeus Young Indiana Pacers
77 Trevor Ariza Phoenix Suns
78 Serge Ibaka Toronto Raptors
79 Domantas Sabonis Indiana Pacers
80 Dennis Schroder Oklahoma City Thunder
81 Al-Farouq Aminu Portland Trailblazers
82 Terry Rozier Boston celtics
83 Taj Gibson Oklahoma City Thunder
84 Lauri Markkanen Chicago Bulls
85 PJ Tucker Houston Rockets
86 James Johnson Miami Heat
87 Andre Iguodala Golden State Warriors
88 Kyle Anderson San Antonio Spurs
89 Dejounte Murray San Antonio Spurs
90 Nikola Vucevic Orlando Magic
91 Kent Bazemore Atlanta Hawks
92 Evan Fournier Orlando Magic
93 Kelly Olynyk Miami Heat
94 Fred Vanfleet Toronto Raptors
95 Demarre Carroll Toronto Raptors
96 Dirk Nowitzki Dallas Mavericks
97 Reggie Jackson Detroit Pistons
98 Pau Gasol San Antonio Spurs
99 Brook Lopez Milwaukee Bucks
100 Lonzo Ball Los Angeles Lakers

Lists to Provoke and Excite

There you have it. Now let’s hear all your complaint as the list seems to be all over the place. Let’s first talk about whether Al Horford is better than Kyrie Irving and whether Kyle Lowry is better than John Wall — and is Horford better than all three of those players, much less a top 20 player in the NBA. Listen, I love Horford from a team standpoint, but he’s often referred to as a “no-stats star” for a reason. He’s not a player that’s carrying you — he’s a fantastic piece and even better role player, but #17?

Not to take anything away from J.J. Redick, but is he really that much better than both Andrew Wiggins and DeMarcus Cousins? The answer might be based on effective they were last season, but then how is Gordon Hayward at #25?

And that’s what these lists do, they take subjective factors and measures from a couple people (or panel) and applies them broadly. And with a list, a player has to come after another — pretty black and white even though #50 Devon Booker may be significantly better than #51 Derrick Favors, we don’t know by how much. Not to mention whether Favors is better than #52 Kristaps Porzinigis.

That’s why lists are so great for news sites, they provoke, bring page views, and gets us talking and excited for the NBA season. I know it got me hype — did it get you excited for the 2019 NBA season?


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  • you spelled Fred VanVleet’s last name wrong (VanFleet)

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