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Tuesday, September 27th, 2011 at 2:53 pm  |  134 responses

Top 50: Carlos Boozer, no. 38

The definitive ranking of the NBA’s best players.

by Aggrey Sam / @CSNBullsInsider

Since when is a former second-round pick, two-time All-Star and Olympic gold medalist a bum after averaging 17.5 ppg and 9.6 rpg, while shooting 51 percent from the field? Apparently when he misses 23 regular-season games and his Playoff numbers sink to 12.6 ppg and 43 percent shooting (his boards actually went up slightly, to 9.7 per), after getting a five-year deal for almost $80 million.

That’s the polite way of expressing the general sentiment I heard around Chicago last spring. Even with the Bulls having their most successful campaign since the Jordan era—best record in the League, Coach of the Year in Tom Thibodeau, League MVP in Derrick Rose and an unexpected run to the Eastern Conference Finals—fans in the Windy City couldn’t stop griping about Booz.

Jazz fans would probably say, “I told you so” (and before “The Decision,” Cavs supporters would have had a lot worse to say, but that’s neither here nor there) and I won’t argue against their reasoning. But the fact of the matter is Utah didn’t make the Playoffs (and even if you don’t think Boozer’s departure was a big reason, it wouldn’t be illogical to say it was a factor in Deron Williams leaving for Jersey), while the Bulls became an upper-echelon NBA team.

True, his D leaves a lot to be desired. At the same time, whether it was despite his presence on that end or not, Chicago was the League’s top defensive team. And yeah, he wasn’t always the dominant low-post force some people expected, but opponents had to least account for his presence, and he was probably the best inside scorer the City of Big Shoulders has seen since the days of recent HOF inductee Artis Gilmore. But none of that mattered.

Chicago is still the Midwest, a region where fans want their players to grind. None other than former Bulls greats like Scottie Pippen and Dennis Rodman called the Alaska native out for his post-season disappearing act, even insinuating he should become an enforcer to counteract teams playing physical with Rose. I can’t truly defend the way he came up short when it counted, but as somebody who spent all season around the team—from his infamous training-camp injury through his failure to come through in the clutch against Indiana, Atlanta or Miami—perhaps I can offer some perspective.

I’m not from Chicago, I wasn’t a Bulls fan coming up (I actually preferred the Bad Boy Pistons and while I acknowledged Mike’s greatness, I was more of a Pip guy), I’m no apologist and unlike GM Gar Forman, Thibs or any of the players, I don’t have a vested interest in team harmony, although the Bulls’ amazing on and off the court chemistry certainly made my job easier, so please don’t call me biased.

‘Los will never be the most athletic cat in the NBA, but it was obvious that his late start affected his bounce, conditioning and rhythm. On top of that, both he and his teammates seemed to overcompensate for his early absence by forcing him the rock—Thibs designed it that way, in an effort to take pressure off Derrick—something that affected their intended transition style of play, being that he’s much more of a half-court guy. Also, he was paired up with Joakim Noah, a unique player who was used to being a facilitaor (as is Booz) and being able to roam from low post to high post, and with both of them being out of the lineup at different times, they never fully jelled, affecting the team’s spacing.

Then, you have the “backup quarterback syndrome,” in which Taj Gibson, coming off an All-Rookie Team debut season, starting (and doing it well) when Booz was out and often sparking the team off the bench, was the talk of the town and in the minds of most observers, should have usurped Booz’s spot. Now, I love Taj to death and I think he’s a hell of a player now and will continue to develop into an even better one (one of the Bulls assistant coaches compares him to a more athletic young PJ Brown, the ultimate role player and the type of dude who should have a long, successful pro career on teams that excel), but Booz brings some things to the table that Gibson doesn’t.

First, understand that Carlos and I both graduated high school in ’99 (as did another much-maligned Bull, Keith Bogans, my fellow DMV native) and being a hoops junkie from an early age, I knew about him early on and saw him play in the McDonald’s All-American Game and at Duke, where he battled my man Lonnie Baxter in the ACC. Booz has always been extremely polished, with comfortable range on his J and nifty post moves to go along with that big body.

Obviously, Jason Williams was the man in Durham and being regarded as “undersized” (something I don’t get; he’s certainly not extremely tall for his position, but it’s not like he’s Barkley’s height out there), he slipped in the Draft, leading to him having a chip on his shoulder. He put in work for Cleveland, bounced for Utah (we all know the blind-man handshake story by now) and continued to put in work, elevating his game to the point where he was considered a top player at his position and even got on with USA Basketball. That jumper has only become more consistent out to 20 feet; he’s effective as both a roll or pop guy as a screener; he’s physical; rebounds well enough (if not above average) for a 4; is a crafty finisher; an underrated passer; and somebody who can operate on the low block or high post.

Basically, talent isn’t the issue.

But there’s something about buddy that makes it rain down “boos” (he claims it’s all “Booz” to him, but he knows the difference) when things go the slightest bit wrong. Maybe it’s the fact that he screams like a maniac after the smallest play, how he feels the need to rub the ball between somebody else’s free throws like he has OCD or even that he’s polite enough, but doesn’t really open up to the media (and therefore, fans), although after some of the stuff that’s leaked out about his personal life, I can’t blame him on that front.

As a beat reporter, would I like him to share a little more, not just answer questions on his terms and take a little more personal responsibility when he’s in the wrong on the floor? Sure, but that’s being picky and honestly, he’s a lot better than most dudes around the League on other teams and since the Bulls as a whole are some of the most easygoing players you’ll come across (including Booz, who, at least on a surface level, got along fine with each and every one of his teammates, going out of his way to do so from the jump), I probably got a little spoiled.

At the same time, Booz was probably smart to be on the defensive after some of what he went through in Utah and likely expected the media in a city the size of Chicago to be just as rough, if not worse. I won’t speak for my peers, but we basically gave him the kid-glove treatment until the last month or so of the season, even as we observed his teammates either seemingly becoming more frustrated or defending him to the point of pleading for us to leave him be.

All that’s well and good, and perhaps with this extended break the NBA is on, he’ll have the chance to get completely healthy, hone his game and redeem himself next season, whenever that may be. Because if he doesn’t, his ranking in next year’s SLAMonline Top 50 is the last thing he’ll need to worry about.

But for now, just going by his numbers (regular season, that is) and track record (when healthy, of course), then assuming another year in Thibs’ system (if he plays D) and building chemistry with Derrick, Jo and the rest of the squad, I’m betting that his pride has him bouncing back strong, silencing the critics and reclaiming his status as one of the better power forwards in the game. I know that’s a lot of variables, but call it an educated guess. At the end of that contract, however…that’s another story, so let’s just stick with the present.

Aggrey Sam covers the Chicago Bulls for Comcast SportsNet Chicago.

SLAMonline Top 50 Players 2011
Rank Player Team Position Pos. Rank
50 Luol Deng Bulls SF 8
49 Andrew Bogut Bucks C 7
48 Ray Allen Celtics SG 9
47 Marc Gasol Grizzlies C 6
46 David West Hornets PF 15
45 Kevin Martin Rockets SG 8
44 Andrew Bynum Lakers C 5
43 Brandon Jennings Bucks PG 11
42 Lamar Odom Lakers PF 14
41 Gerald Wallace Blazers SF 7
40 Brook Lopez Nets C 4
39 Joakim Noah Bulls C 3
38 Carlos Boozer Bulls PF 13

Notes
• Rankings are based solely on projected ’11-12 performance.
• Contributors to this list include: Maurice Bobb, Shannon Booher, David Cassilo, Bryan Crawford, Sandy Dover, Adam Figman, Jon Jaques, Eldon Khorshidi, Ryne Nelson, Doobie Okon, Ben Osborne, Quinn Peterson, Dave Schnur, Abe Schwadron, Dan Shapiro, Irv Soonachan, Todd Spehr, Tzvi Twersky, Yaron Weitzman, DeMarco Williams and Ben York.
• Want more of the SLAMonline Top 50? Check out the archive.

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  • http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/7021031/the-nets-nba-economics Allenp

    Oh sh*t.

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    I was planning on writing nothing but “BWAHAHAHAHAHA” on here and carrying on.
    BUT since Aggrey Sam wrote the write-up, and I have mad respect for dude, not only his work with SLAM but also with Comcast in Chicago, and his dope play-by-plays on Twitter, I’ma read the write-up first….

  • http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/7021031/the-nets-nba-economics Allenp

    That said, I appreciate Aggrey’s point. People do focus on the negatives with Boozer, and that is wrong. Dude kills inferior big men.
    The problem is that in the playoffs, the inferior bigs are already gone. You get to play talent in the playoffs, and Boozer is inconsistent against talent. He always has been. He’ll have monster games, then disappear. He did it in Utah and he’s doing it now.

  • http://www.optimabbc.be Max

    It’s about to go down..

  • Irfan

    Well seems quite fair. I hope he’ll improve next season especially in the playoffs. He quite fell off from his Jazz years. The PF position is very strong and it may have 10 of the top 30…
    The Bulls have 4 players in top 50, so will have the Celtics & Lakers. Miami is behind with three.

  • http://www.optimabbc.be Max

    Cosign Allenp
    but Booz isn’t better than those 12 guys chosen before him with the exception of DWest.

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    Loved the write-up.
    Aggrey is always on point with his writing.
    But still can’t cosign Boozer making this list.

  • http://www.optimabbc.be Max

    Irfan, Grizz are ganna have 3 guys too.

  • Shem

    This dude is getting payed 16 mill a year. The Bulls could have an above average shooting guard and power forward with that money. Whenever I talk about Boozer with people they say everyone focuses on what he doesn’t do rather then what he does do. At 16 mill a year you should be doing everything. You shouldn’t be a defensive liability and lack mental toughness. I think he’s a great player and honestly, I wouldn’t give him so much grief if he didn’t have the contract he has. But he does, so if you have an 80 million dollar contract play like you have an 80 million dollar contract.

  • ctkennedy

    Boozer D is no worse than Kevin Love n Love gon be top30 easily
    Boozer is one of the best 10-15 scoring BIG MEN in the league …that means alot
    he gets more boards than Aldridge n Amare they both gon be higher than him
    if your team is top5 n 10 in overall D n u a Big than u matter on D period
    All D starts in the paint

  • http://slamonline.com Ben Osborne

    Mr. Sam!

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    This has to joke, right? Booooooooooooooooooooooooooozer over Noah?
    “Honey!, get my tachi ready. I’m about to perform Seppuku”

  • Chitownrepa74

    why is this piece of bench warming, no defense playing,injury prone,sorry as all hell player on this list? the only thing he good for is gettin dunked on and screamin to the top of his lungs whenever rose do somethin hard.

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    ctkennedy – Chicago’s great interior defense was a result of the play of Joakim Noah, Taj Gibson, Omer Asik and Kurt Thomas, NOT Carlos Boozer.
    Trust me, I watched almost every single Bulls game last year except for like three or two that weren’t on League Pass.
    Boozer’s D is horrendous, save for an occasional strip or benefiting from another player stripping the ball and getting credited with the steal.
    And he is injured way too much for the team to really, truly benefit off his above average work in the post.
    But most off, his disappearing act in the playoffs in inexplicable and unforgivable.

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    Went in thinking this was too high, read Mr. Sam’s write-up, and changed my opinion. Good placement and superb writing.

  • ctkennedy

    @Enigmatic Carlos is another big body that rebounds his position …im not sayin he a great defender but he aint that bad either
    im not sayin the man a great player but there aint 50 better than him either
    Noah cant up just as small or smaller than Boozer n the playoffs

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    I am saying, he is that bad defensively.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Wayno

    GTFOH….Boozer is overrated. It’s great that he can get 30-15 against terrible teams, he doesn’t show up when it counts. Boozer makes LeBron look clutch.

  • http://redoftoothandclaw.ca/ niQ

    I will always remember Boozer’s defense on the play he jogged behind Andray Blatche…Incidently, Blatche missed the open lay-up. LOL.

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    He’s a horrible defender. Both team and individually

  • ctkennedy

    yall wildin its aint TOO MANY 20/10 50percent from the field 75ft walkin around 17/10 for that matter
    is he a franchise player HELL NO
    but he CLEARLY is one on the best bigs in the league after the elite
    he in the next tier

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    He’s clearly a good player, and a regular season producer, but he is going to Disappear against the better competition despite demanding elite money. If Boozer made 7-8 Million a year I would have no issues with him, you get what you pay for.

  • rainman10

    there are a lot of “horrible” defenders that will be higher on this list than Boozer. I think we all know the things Boozer does well, and the things he doesn’t. His ranking on this list is right about where it should be.

  • Irfan

    The main question for me is: which PF will be left over? We will have 12 other players above him. My guess: Nowitzki, Gasol, Bosh, Garnett, Griffin, Duncan, Randolph, Stoudemire, Aldridge, Love and two of {Scola, Lee, Millsap, Brand – and Smith if he is to be considered a PF}.
    For me, Scola is above Love and should be on that list. I think Scola & Smith ot Lee make the cut. Then it’s quite fair, although David West could be ranked ahead of Carlos Boozer.

  • http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/7021031/the-nets-nba-economics Allenp

    I don’t think Millsap or Brand make the list, to be honest. Ibaka makes it, probably, as should Scola.
    And Scola will not be ranked ahead of Kevin Love, not on this list. If David Lee makes the list that would be surprising too.

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    I dont see scola making the list at this point. David Lee will prolly show up in the next 2-3 spots, Josh Smith will follow closely after

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    Let me clarify, I am not saying Lee is better then Scola cuz he isnt, I’m saying based on the rankings thus far, and where the various players did and didnt fall last season. Unless Duncan is off this list all together? He was no.50 last year

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    Ibaka won’t make the list. He doesn’t score enough.
    Even though he probably deserves to, cause if the Thunder play him more than 35 mins per next season, he’ll probably give them like 13, 11 and over 3 blocks per.

  • http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/7021031/the-nets-nba-economics Allenp

    Wait, you think Lee makes the list instead of Scola? That would be crazy.

  • http://sajkflf.com Jukai

    My guess: Nowitzki, Gasol, Bosh, Griffin, Love, Stoudemire, Randolph, Garnett, Alrdige, Scola, Lee and…. damn…. I really… I mean, how does Duncan get on this list if he was so low last year and so high this year when he was so statistically worse?

  • ctkennedy

    Duncan play good last yr …he got his numbers in what 28mins a game …ill take that all day long

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    Maybe Horford will be a PF on here?

  • http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/7021031/the-nets-nba-economics Allenp

    I think Duncan is off the list.
    I would wager Blake is higher than Bosh and Aldridge is higher than Garnett, if I was guessing.
    Slam must really expect David Lee to bounce back hard for some reason. And, to be honest, I would rather have Boozer than David Lee.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Amare should be ranked above Gasol/Griffin/Love and right there with Bosh. Even though he plays lackluster D and puts up measly rebouding numbers for someone with his size and athletic ability, he’s still a better player than those 3.
    Also, even though it’s unlikely to happen, LA was a better player than KG and ZBO. He finally proved that he could be the “man” and carried POR to the playoffs without BRoy. He also was a top-2 if not the best PF for a considerable stretch last season.

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    Allen David West just appeared on this list after tearing his AcL. Yes i think slam rated Lee over Scola

  • http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/7021031/the-nets-nba-economics Allenp

    Man, I feel bad for Scola. He gets no love.
    I would rather have him any day. I love his post moves.
    Aldridge deserves to leapfrog KG on projected performance. KG is getting old, Aldridge is getting stronger, and now he has Crash to run with him and they dumped that pouting loser Rudy Fernandez.
    However, he will miss the genius of Andre Miller. Nobody appreciates Dre until he’s gone.

  • MLK4Life

    I’m not sure if Amar’e should be ahead of Griffin honestly. If so, it’s not that much of a difference between the two. Amar’e doesn’t grab rebounds the way Blake does, he’s never averaged more than 9 a game in a season. If Blake continues to improve his offensive skillset, I’d give him a season or two at the most before he’s convincingly better than STAT.

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    If Aldridge is not above KG then this is more about name recognition then skill, or offense, whatever it has appeared to be about all along

  • MLK4Life

    @nbk
    I agree. Can’t name that many PFs before you get to Aldridge.

  • http://redoftoothandclaw.ca/ niQ

    Sucks that Ibaka won’t make the list. He defintely will be here next year thought!

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    I’d take Ibaka as my center over Brook Lopez…. yup..

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    I’m trying to think of teams who will have no one on this list…Charlotte, Toronto, Cleveland, Detroit, and Utah (?!).

  • http://www.danchamb.com.br Lz – Cphfinest3

    Co-sign on Caboose at 3:44 pm & Allenp’s take on Scola.

  • http://slamonline.com datkid

    I’m really not sure amare is better than griffin right now.. Griffin at least tries on defense even though he’s terrible.. plus he rebounds more. and does amare REALLY have that big of an edge on griffin skill wise? I doubt it.

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    Datkid: Back to the basket game and shot blocking. But honestly, I think STAT and Gryffindor should be within 2 or 3 spots of each other.

  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BlD1Uhs0mTQ what

    Marc Gasol, a healthy Andrew Bogut, and Gerald Wallace are each a LOT better than Boozer.

  • ai come back

    uhm bulls have 5 players in the top 50…luol deng 50 joakim 39 carlos boozer 38 drose top 10 BRIAN SCALABRINE number 1

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    ^ WHITE MAMBA!!! :D

  • r13

    Man this is just a laundry list of excuses why Booz sucks. Everyone hates him for a reason you cannot trust him to show up. As a Bulls fan i was shouting at the TV to give Gibson more burn, all season but especially in the playoffs because he added INTENSITY to the game, and he fits with the bulls. Bulls have a badass team of tough defenders. With Booz its not just defense its O, watch the games he gets a lot of easy buckets but then in the playoffs when opposition D is ratcheted up he cannot produce. The fans know he does not have the mental toughness and should be shipped.

  • Harlem_World

    Funny, last season Deng was the Bulls 2nd best player – no question. On here, both Boozer and Noah are ranked higher. Noah I can hear, Boozer? His D is so bad it negates whatever advantages he brings on offense. He needs a full season to redeem himself in my opinion.

  • davidR

    i have no idea how new coach jackson will handle the warriors offense, but if he opens it up and lets them run (like he should), david lee will have a very productive year. his passing skills are criminally underrated. with all the slashers on that warriors squad, and lee’s midrange jumper, he could be a real problem on the elbow with the pick and roll

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    There’s no way Tim Duncan doesn’t make the list if Ray Allen was on it.
    Also, Scola is a fantastic player with the coolest post moves in the league, but sometimes–and this isn’t often, but sometimes–he’ll blow wide open layups, or have a really bad turnover that just leaves you going wtf?!?!
    Still, he’s one of the best PFs in the league and should be on this list.

  • Spades

    Dukies always choke

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    Teddy: Check my list on the Noah page. I honestly don’t think there’s room for Duncan if Scola is on it.

  • T-Money

    POPCORN MUSCLES. “AAGGGHHHH!” “GIMME THAT!” “AGHHH!” “GRAB THAT SH-T JO!!” “AGGGGHHHH!!!!”

  • MUBWAR

    First Toronto should have Demar Derozen here. Beside the order of Wade, Bryant, Eric Gordon, Jo Johnson, Monte Ellis and Kevin Martin who else is there at the SG position. Please don’t mention the likes of Ginobli and captain Jack or Ray. This kid averaged 17.5p 4r 2a and 1s last year, plays tremendous D and big enough to guard 1 to 3.

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    ^LOL

  • MUBWAR

    ohh this article is about boozer. We saw what Bosh did to him in the ECF and it’s good thing he is stuck with the Bulls for a little while.

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    Tremendous D? Plays on the raptors? Don’t mention Ginobili? I’d rather have Paul George. How does that sound?

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    I meant that towards T-Money, but can just as easily mean it towards MUBWAR.
    Why are y’all Canadiens so high on DeRozan? The kid’s gonna be good but DAMN y’all act like he’s the second coming of Michael Jordan.
    Id DeRozan deserves to make this list then so does Nick Young.

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    We also saw what Boozer did to Bosh in the regular season.
    OH, THOSE ELBOWS! WATCH THE ELBOWS! BOSH HAS MOUTHS TO FEED!
    What a b*tch…

  • Allenp

    The Bulls have four of the top 50 players in the League. Granted they are low on the list but still…

  • MUBWAR

    Really Paul George? hata hate hate. We’re high on DD just like people from Chicago are high on Rose. This guy can easily average 25 4 and 4. Enigmatic i feel your pain. The bulls paid 80mil for a man who couldn’t crack top 20. sad

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    LMAO!
    You’re high on DD like Chicago is high on Rose?
    Sounds to me like you’re just high.
    Yeah, I’ll give you that he can score 25 per eventually for that sorry a** team.
    Then again maybe not cause Jonas will be option #1 soon as he touches down there.
    But 4 and 4?
    Maybe 4 rebounds and 4 turnovers per, cause it sure as hell ain’t rebounds and assists.
    And I feel your pain too.
    The Heat paid $110 mil for a man who’s balls may never drop.

  • MUBWAR

    the Heat can back him up with wade and lbj. your turn

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    I mean, you realize DeRozan’s CAREER HIGH for assists in a game is 5, right?
    Which he accomplished ONCE in his career?
    And you think he’ll average 4 per?
    Yeah, ok….

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    Going forward, yes i’d rather have George. Derozan can score and is athletic enough that if he plays 35 minutes his numbers will look pretty. He shot 46% and only scored 17.2ppg. Plus his real production didnt really improve that much, he just played more. Plus Paul George per 36 minutes is basically a mirror of derozan as a rookie, except George is already a really good defender.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    DeRozan will be a lot better next season. George is nice too, but I wouldn’t put either of them in the top 50 just yet.

  • MUBWAR

    Ok enigmatic there is 7 SG left. Can you please tell me yours and don’t forget this is for projected in the 2011 2012 season. I have
    Wade
    Bryant
    Eric Gordon
    Jo Johnson
    Monte ellis
    Stephen Jackson
    and Demar Derozen

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    Well, I don’t hate on Wade and James and the Heat like you hate on Rose and the Bulls.
    I just hate on Bosh.
    And not even his game, cause his game is beastly.
    I just hate how much of a b*tch dude is at times.
    So not sure where you’re getting at with that.
    And in case you haven’t noticed, I’m not too high on Boozer either, cause I don’t blindly stand up for players on my squad that don’t deserve it like you do.
    The funny thing is, had LeBron joined the Bulls, you’d be praising Boozer right now.

  • MUBWAR

    We are not talking about a rookie (7 points average) Derozen nbk.

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    MUBWAR – Wade, Kobe, Monta, Johnson, Manu, Gordon, and either Tyreke Evans or Jackson (depending on if they rank Evans as a SG or PG).
    You could be right, DeRozan could be in this list.
    I’m just saying if he is I wouldn’t agree with it.
    There’s been others on this list I haven’t agreed with.

  • MUBWAR

    list enig ima a huge raptors fan. I understand people who dislike Bosh for his soft looks but when I hear people say the likes of Booz, Love and Amar’e being on Bosh’s level it infuriates me. It shows the lack of basketball knowledge most people have. Even if he took a back seat to 2 perennial superstars, he is still a top 5 to 10 PF. That alone shows his greatness

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    MUBWAR: DeRozan (way to spell your boy’s name right) is in no way better than Manu. And I’d take Tyreke Evans or James Harden well ahead of DeMar. Kid is nice, sure, but he’s just a scorer at this point. He’s essentially a less efficient and less productive Kevin Martin (in terms of stats, not actual playing style). DeMar is gonna be good, but not this year.

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    MUBWAR, when it comes to straight up playing the game, Bosh > Boozer all day everyday, unless Bosh decides to leave his talents in South Beach and shoot 1/18.
    But he really rubbed me the wrong way last season when he acted like a punk with the whole Omer Asik thing, the Boozer elbow, and crying after that loss to the Bulls (I know it was him!)
    Oh damn, I forgot about Harden! Dude’s gonna blow up next season!

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    I agree Enig, but I would be surprised if he made this list, only because of the crowding of SG’s. Harden will make it if Tyreke is classified as a point guard. If not, it’s a shame.

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    Per 36 minutes, Demar DeRozan 2009/10 : 14.3points .498% shooting 2010/11- 17.8points .467% shooting. Hardly the improvement everyone in Toronto thinks they saw.

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    But nbk! The points per game went up!!!! He got better!!!!!!

  • MUBWAR

    Last year here is
    Tyreke 17.8p 4.8r and 5.6 a on 37 min
    Harden 12.2p 3.5r 2.3a on 28min

    Demar still got the edge on Harden and the other is a PG

    nbk Derozan averaged 8 points his rookie season not 14.3 check your stats

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    Yeah not jump from bein a pretty good rookie to top 50 in the league better. This dood is saying he’ll be better then Manu Ginboli, and Tyreke Evans…. Thats some fantasia sh*. Dancing hippos and what not

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    Mub War do you not know what per 36 minutes means?

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    MUBWAR. Watch the playoffs please. I saw Harden play point guard better than Russ at times. As for DeMar, well, I didn’t exactly see him…

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    And nbk, that was sarcasm. Doesn’t translate great online.

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    Haha i feel you. My bad

  • MUBWAR

    Ginobli struggled last year and he ain’t getting any younger. His numbers from last are a mirror of Demar plus a couple of assists. This list is the projection for next season not a lifetime achievement award

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    MUB, you do realize that Manu’s per 36 minute stats have stayed pretty close to the same for the past 3 years right? And “a couple of assists.” Manu got 270% the assits that DeMar got. Per 36 minutes, Manu had more than 3x DeMar. I don’t know what makes you believe that DeMar will outperform Manu next year. Enlighten me.

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    Damn, cats are STILL sleeping on Manu.
    Damn, son…

  • http://www.slamonline.com Slick Ric

    Chicago great interior defense wasnt because of noah either, the bulls still were great defensively with out both of them. Omer asik is actually better in the paint than noah, and all the true bulls fans know that.Booz deserved to be on this list, he had a good season despite being injured. If you dont think boozer is a top 50 player than your’e foolish.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    Hold up–Manu Ginboli won’t be better than Demar Derozan next season??? MUBWAR I understand you’re a Raptors fan (so am I) but Demar will have to do a lot more next season (which I think he will) to prove he’s top 50. Let’s not even talk about his being better than Ginobli, because that’s not happening in one year. That’s not even debatable. Not only would he have to be better than Manu Ginboli, he’d have to be better than Kevin Martin, a top 10 scorer, to crack the top 50.
    DeRozan is good, and improving at a higher pace than nbk gives him credit for (DeRozan actually showed the most improvement out of any sophomore last season… most or second most), and I have a good feeling about him but hold your horses.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    I mean, Ginobli was the best player on the Spurs last season and an MVP candidate on a team that had the best record in the West! And we’re comparing him to a good young talent who’s played 2 seasons of basketball on a perennial bottom feeder?!

  • http://www.slamonline.com Slick Ric

    ^ co-sign teddy

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    Derozan also had the biggest spike in minutes among sophomores. Also no sophomore had even a very good season compared to their first. Its like being king of the underachievers, it doesnt mean that much. And I’m not saying he’s bad, he’s just overrated, especially if its a top 50 argument. I dont think he was even in CBS’s top 100 or barely made SI’s top 75.

  • MUBWAR

    MVP for 17.4 points 3.7 rebounds 4.9 assists. let’s put the pipe down people. I’m still shady about rose being MVP with 25 4 and 7.7 and ur talking projections for a 34 years old guard.

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    8th in MVP voting. 3rd team all nba. Actually

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    Mub, just stop dude. There is no well-informed NBA fan or player who believes that DeRozan is better than Manu. Your only argument is “look, he scored more points compared to his rookie year.”

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    And those aren’t projections, those are what he achieved last season his team also achieved 61 Wins. The Raptors and Derozan achieved one of the worst defensive seasons of all time…Oh and his team achieved 60 losses.

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    Its almost too easy isn’t it nbk?

  • http://bulls.com airs

    i missed EVERYTHING.
    well, theres still the rose and john lucas III writeups to look forward to.

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    Pretty much, this is a pretty crazy argument to get in, in the first place. Oh well atleast i have just been sittin with my women watchin horrible television shows and needed somethin to occupy my lack of an attention span. Lol

  • Armando

    MUBWAR, just stop, noone agrees with you. By just comparing stats show how little you understand the game. Manu definitely belongs on the list, top 25 IMO. Back to the article… Who would you rather have… Boozer or Bogut, or Bynum, or Noah… The list is a joke if David Lee makes it over the aforementioned players. Top 10 PFs (“projected”):
    1. Nowitzki
    2. Aldridge
    3. Gasol
    4. Stoudemire
    5. Griffin
    6. Randolph
    7. Bosh
    8. Love
    9. Scola
    10. Garnett

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    MUBWAR – you’re not “shady” about Rose getting MVP, you’re just a Rose hater.
    You have been from your very first post on here. A Bron lover and a Rose hater.
    Rose deserved MVP.
    Best player on the best team in the regular season.
    I can understand being a fan, but damn try to have some objectivity and common sense.
    DeRozan should consider himself lucky if he ever sniffs having as good a career as Manu has had.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Manu Ginobili is overrated with the way “some” people talk about him.

  • Sean

    More bad writing by Slam. Boozer is not better than Joakim or Luol. I watched the Bulls all last season, I should know.

    This list is a mess. I remember when Slam was on point with everything they wrote and the magazine existed for a reason other than to accomodate it’s huge page share of advertisements.

  • Otero

    Top 10

    Lebron
    Durant
    Kobe
    Rose
    Wade 

    Dwight
    Nowitzki 
    CP
    Melo
    Dwill

    Rondo
    Amare
    Blake
    Love
    Westbrook

    Ellis
    Zbo
    Curry
    Joe Johnson
    Rudy gay 

    Pau gasol
    Bosh
    Wall
    Albridge
    E gordan
    Al Horford
    Ginobli
    Jsmoove
    Granger

    Pierce
    Nash
    PArker
    Kg
    Tyrek Evans
    Beasley
    Jterry
    dlee

  • http://hoopistani.blogspot.com hoopistani

    Boozer over Noah WTF

  • KH10

    This was by far the best write up yet. Good work.

  • http://www.optimabbc.be Max

    Top 3 pf’s
    Dirk
    Aldridge
    ZBo

  • henry

    boozer is not better than noah, and there is nothin you can do say to change that. noah has a far greater impact on a game than boozer. if someone has already stated this, then oh well i didnt feel like reading through all 107 comments

  • MUBWAR

    Enigmatic if you call not fallowing the trend a hater, hey that’s your opinion. To me the MVP is the best player on a contending team. So in the East there were Chi and Mia which puts Rose Wade and James. out West it’s Dallas and thunder which is Durant Nowitzki and Wesbrook. So in all honesty is Rose the second or even the third best player on this list. the answer is No. Wade james Nowitski Durant and YES even Westbrook is either as good or better than Rose.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Wayno

    @ MUBWAR – take any one of those players away and which team hurts the most?

  • http://redoftoothandclaw.ca/ niQ

    A little late on the convo but in regards to DeRozan, I love his game but if he is to crack top 50, he’ll definitely need to add a 3 point shot and improved defense. I don’t agree with mubwar’s notion that he plays tremendous D. Ginobili basically has all that DeRozan needs – 3 point shot + tremendous D. But don’t worry, with pretty much the same team as last season (Valanciunas won’t join the Raps til 2012-2013), if there is a season for DeMar to break out, it’s going to be this one.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Wayno

    The Bulls wouldn’t be a .500 team without DRose.

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    Did Mub really just say that Westbrook was equal to Rose? Why do we value his opinion at all?

  • http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/7021031/the-nets-nba-economics Allenp

    Manu does not pay tremendous defense. But, he is much, MUCH better than Derozan. Just comparing the two is insulting to Manu.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Nonsense, the Bulls would defineitly be above .500 without Rose and with a regular PG. Their rebounding, coaching and defense isn’t going anywhere.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Wayno

    @ JT – I didn’t say with a regular PG, I just said w/o DRose. Take him away and that team sucks. Boozer is the only other player on that team that can create his own shot, and that’s only against inferior competition. Miami is still ok w/o Wade or Bron. OKC is still ok w/o Westbrook or Durant. Dirk you might be agle to make an argument for, but they still have scoring options other than him. The Bulls are deffinitely the worst out of those teams if they were to lose thier star.

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    I still think Orlando would be the team most hurt if they lost Dwight. Would they even get 25 wins? But I’d go in between Wayno and JT. The Bulls would still make the playoffs, but as a 7th or 8th seed in the East.

  • MUBWAR

    a rose less Bulls is still better than indiana and 76ers. So they still make the playoff.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Like I said before, their defense, rebound and coaching doesn’t leave with Rose gone. Their offense would struggle but their defense and rebound will still be enough to carry them to the playoffs.

  • Showtime

    Wait so Beas not on the list?? but the eye brow & david bad acl west is???

  • http://www.slamonline.com UNFROZEN CAVEMAN LAWYER

    MUBWAR, I WOULD CALL YOUR OPINIONS TRASH, BUT I DONT WANT TO INSULT MY GARBAGE.

  • http://www.optimabbc.be Max

    Indy has a nice team, don’t sleep on them..

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    I’d take Ben Gordon over DeRozan… yup..

  • http://www.slamonline.com Wayno

    @ Caboose – Yeah, Magic would be dead meat w/o Dwight. @ JT, maybe under .500 is an exageration, but I think they’d be right around .500. A .500 record could get them into the playoffs in the east too. Defense and rebounding is great, but if you can’t score you’re still in big trouble.

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    Out of curiosity JT, who was your MVP pick from last year? Bron?

  • http://bleacherreport.com/articles/670447-dwight-howard-and-andrew-bogut-a-tale-of-two-2011-all-nba-defensive-centers nbk

    Demar DeRozan is at 101 at ESPN’s NBA Rank. So there are 2 major publications that didn’t even have him in the top 100

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Caboose, it was between Bron/DHow. I was leaning towards Bron though because even on a new team with another superstar that demands equal touches, the guy put up the exact same numbers he had in Cleveland. Not to mention, MIA had the 3rd best record in the L after a 9-8 start.
    DRose deserved it but he wasn’t my pick.

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    MUBWAR, I don’t know why I’m even bothering to argue this with you, but Rose deserved the MVP.
    The MVP award doesn’t always go to the best player.
    I still think LeBron James is the best player in the NBA, and while the Miami Heat had a solid record last year, there’s some things that I think rightfully deterred James and Wade from being the MVP.
    They were 21-18 against playoff teams. They were 1-6 against the Bulls and Celtics, specifically.
    The Bulls were 26-13 against playoff teams.
    They didn’t lost against the Heat, or Mavs, and only lost once against the Celtics.
    Derrick Rose stepped up huge in huge games.
    Against the Spurs who had by far the best record at the time prior to the ASG, Rose had 42, 5 and 8 while shooting over 60% from the field.
    Against the Heat, dude averaged 29 points per.
    He had some clutch shots to win and tie games.
    The Bulls never lost three straight games all season long.
    I could go on, but the fact that you feel such hatred towards Derrick Rose for some unexplained reason won’t allow you to soak any of this in anyway so why bother…

  • http://Slamonline.com Caboose

    Fair enough JT. Rose was my pick, but only cause Dwight and Bron had strong cases against them (team record and strong teammates respectively). I think Rose is a bit overhyped and I don’t want to see him too high on this list but he is a nice player.

  • MUBWAR

    Watch Caboose they’ll put Rose in the top 5. looool

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    It’s not laughable to put Rose in the top 5. I wouldn’t, but is he so much worse than Durant and CP3. He is battling those two for top 5 spot. In any order you choose that top 8 players, LBJ, Kobe, Wade, D-How, Cp3, Durant, Rose. I wouldn’t be upset if Rose squeezed ahead of a couple guys. Not saying he should or deserves to, but it shouldn’t be laughable if he is. Many teams could use Rose’s services more than Cp3 or Howards. He’s one of the best perimeter scorers in the L.

  • Jono

    This is ridiculous.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Slick Ric

    @jtaylor, tell that to the bucks, especially with noah and boozer missing 57 games, no playoffs.

  • slamfan4life

    bulls got deng and booz on here…..only guessing noah and rose aswell……bogans prolly too….he that #1

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