Every NBA team has its most valuable player. Whether a franchise is a contender or at the bottom of the league, they each rate a particular player extremely highly. This means that their most valuable asset is untradeable and cannot be taken from the roster for any offer that can be put on the table. After all, in 2021, the talent in the league is ridiculous.
But it is time to name every NBA player on every NBA team that is almost untouchable. By looking at future impact, current stats, and overall team production; here is every NBA team's most valuable player, starting with the Atlanta Hawks and ending with the Washington Wizards.
Atlanta Hawks: Trae Young
Trae Young is the undisputed franchise player for the Atlanta Hawks. Young is averaging 25.3 PPG and 9.6 APG for the Hawks who hold the 5th seed in the Eastern Conference only 4.5 games behind the 3rd seed. Thanks to Young's ability to score the ball and assist for others, he is one of the most untradeable players in the league at 22 years old.
Boston Celtics: Jayson Tatum
For the Boston Celtics, they are lucky to have Jaylen Brown blossoming into a first-time All-Star in 2021. Brown is in his bag, averaging 24.5 PPG this season. But Jayson Tatum is the only untouchable on the squad, averaging 25.8 PPG and 7.4 RPG. Tatum is only 23 years old and is already one of the best scorers in the NBA. His potential is through the roof right now and Boston wouldn't trade him for the world.
Brooklyn Nets: Kevin Durant
The Brooklyn Nets are extremely lucky to have 3 untradeable players on one roster. Kyrie Irving, James Harden, and Kevin Durant are all top players who Brooklyn would never trade. But in terms of who is the most untouchable out of the three, it has to be Kevin Durant. Durant is averaging 27.3 PPG this season, and he has proved he can be the best player in a Finals series. Kyrie has shown he can be a dominant sidekick while Harden has yet to get it done in the Finals, making Durant the key to the team.
Charlotte Hornets: LaMelo Ball
The Charlotte Hornets are thanking their lucky stars for LaMelo Ball. The Hornets were in deep trouble last year after losing Kemba Walker and replacing him with nothing. But Ball has the potential to be a greater player than Walker, and the rest of the roster is setting up nicely. With Ball the favorite for the Rookie of the Year Award (15.9 PPG and 6.1 APG), he is the most valuable player on a Hornets team that is the 8th seed right now.
Chicago Bulls: Zach LaVine
Zach LaVine has blossomed from a one-dimensional dunker to an excellent all-around scorer. LaVine is averaging a career-high 27.5 PPG and 5.1 APG for the Bulls, who made a big splash before the trade deadline by acquiring Nikola Vucevic. LaVine is the key to Chicago's future, and it is because of him the Bulls will continue to build a contending team in the future.
Cleveland Cavaliers: Collin Sexton
Out of all the NBA All-Star snubs this season, Collin Sexton is at the top. He is having a sensational season, carrying the rebuilding Cavaliers with a 24.5 PPG scoring average. Cleveland are way out of the playoff picture because no one else can create their own offense, but Sexton is a completely untouchable piece. He is only 22 years old and will continue to get better.
Dallas Mavericks: Luka Doncic
The Dallas Mavericks drafted the best player in the 2018 Draft. Luka Doncic went 3rd behind Deandre Ayton and Marvin Bagley III, but he should've gone first. Either way, Doncic is having an MVP year averaging 28.5 PPG, 8.0 RPG, and 8.8 APG. Luka is undeniably great at only 22 years old and besides Zion Williamson and Giannis Antetokounmpo, he is probably the next face of the NBA. In other words, he is 100% untouchable.
Denver Nuggets: Nikola Jokic
Nikola Jokic has always been good, but no one expected to be this great. He is by far the most impactful player in Denver, and one of the top five players in the NBA this season. The big man is averaging 26.2 PPG, 10.9 RPG, and 8.7 APG for the 5th seed in the West. Without Jokic, Denver are an afterthought. With him, they are legitimate to tile contenders although they will need a healthy Jamal Murray. Jokic is probably the MVP of the league which means he is untouchable.
Detroit Pistons: Killian Hayes
Detroit is in full rebuild mode and their roster is void of any real talent right now outside of Jerami Grant and Saddiq Bey. But Killian Hayes, the 6'5" point guard, is their untradable piece. Hayes is only averaging 5.9 PPG and 4.4 APG in 16 games so far this season, but his potential is clear to see. Hayes will be turning 20 years old this year, so he has plenty of time to become the next point guard for an iconic franchise like the Pistons.
Golden State Warriors: Stephen Curry
Who else would be untouchable on the Warriors? Just when we thought Curry was getting past it, he put on spectacular performance after spectacular performance. Curry's hot shooting has him first on the scoring charts at 31.2 PPG, and he is carrying a very average Warriors team to a .500 record. Curry himself feels like he's the MVP of the league, and even if he doesn't get it this season, the Warriors feel the same way too.
Houston Rockets: Christian Wood
Houston has undergone a very interesting transformation since trading away their superstar James Harden. Losing a top-5 player in the game and arguably their 2nd greatest player is not easy to swallow, but they have done a great job of collecting some nice young pieces. Christian Wood is at the core of it, averaging 21.0 PPG and 9.5 RPG. Wood is one of the most improved players in the NBA and he should be a consistent All-Star for the Rockets for years to come.
Indiana Pacers: Domantas Sabonis
Indiana moved on from Victor Oladipo this season, making Domantas Sabonis their franchise player. And he truly deserves that honor, averaging 19.9 PPG and 11.6 RPG while making his second straight All-Star Team. Sabonis is also a talented passer averaging 6.0 APG, and the Pacers offense runs through him. Sabonis is the solid building block for a talented core featuring Caris LeVert and Malcolm Brogdon, so he is untouchable as far as Indiana is concerned.
Los Angeles Clippers: Kawhi Leonard
2-time NBA champion, 2-time Finals MVP, and 2-time Defensive Player of the Year Kawhi Leonard is unsurprisingly the most untradeable asset on the Los Angeles Clippers. The Clippers need to reach the Western Conference Finals at the very least this postseason, or they risk losing one of the best players in the NBA during free agency. Leonard knows the power is in his hands because if he leaves, the Clippers are finished. Leonard made his third straight All-Star Team this season and is averaging 25.7 PPG and 6.7 RPG.
Los Angeles Lakers: LeBron James
Anthony Davis is in his prime right now at 28 years old, and he was the Lakers' leading scorer last year for the Lakers. But LeBron James, without a doubt, is the best player on the team. Teams would probably sacrifice their future for a chance to sign a 36-year old LeBron James because he has the impact of taking any team to the Finals. He has proved it time and time again, and even at his age, he is completely untradeable.
Memphis Grizzlies: Ja Morant
Memphis have had a lot of solid point guards in their history but none come close to the talent of Ja Morant. Morant is exploding with athleticism and offensive ability, and he will only get better. Morant is averaging 19.4 PPG and 7.4 APG for the Grizzlies this season, a team that surprisingly holds the 8th seed. As a 21-year-old, Morant is an untradeable asset for the Grizzlies because he is a superstar in the making.
Miami Heat: Jimmy Butler
Miami Heat's Jimmy Butler is one of the most clutch two-way players in the NBA. Butler proved he gets it done in the biggest moments, and he is the walking example of the Heat franchise. Jimmy Butler has played 44 games this season but has put up 21.3 PPG and 7.3 APG. Butler, and the entire Heat team, for example, turn it on as the postseason nears and that is when we will start seeing an even better Butler. For now, he is 100% untouchable because he led the team to the Finals last year.
Milwaukee Bucks: Giannis Antetokounmpo
2-time MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo is a top-5 player in the NBA, and he is once again at his best. Giannis is averaging 28.4 PPG, 11.3 RPG, and 6.0 APG for the Bucks who are holding the 3rd seed in the East. Giannis is sensational on both ends of the court because he dominates the paint with an improving jumper and all areas of the defensive end. The Greek Freak has already won everything on an individual level and once he gets an NBA title, his legendary status is forever confirmed.
Minnesota Timberwolves: Karl-Anthony Towns
Karl-Anthony Towns is a bundle of All-Star talent. Even though he is 2 years removed from his last All-Star appearance, he is putting up All-Star numbers. He is averaging 24.8 PPG, 10.9 RPG, and 4.6 APG. Towns is carrying one of the worst teams in the NBA every night, and if he doesn't get the help he needs, Minnesota are at risk of losing him. Towns needs to start winning because he is wasting away his years as a 25-year old superstar.
New Orleans Pelicans: Zion Williamson
Zion Williamson is only turning 21 years old this season, and he is already one of the best players in the world. Williamson is averaging 27.0 PPG, 7.3 RPG, and 3.6 APG for the Pelicans this year and has taken a jump in every aspect of his game. Williamson is so powerful and dominant down low, to the point that people are claiming he resembles a young Shaquille O'Neal. Williamson has a long way to go to cement his legendary status, but he is the next face of the NBA right now.
New York Knicks: Julius Randle
When the Lakers traded Julius Randle for basically nothing a few years ago, it was clear they were making room to welcome in Anthony Davis. But they didn't realize Randle would develop into an All-Star like he has this season, especially this soon. Randle is averaging 24.0 PPG, 10.5 RPG, and 6.0 APG for the New York Knicks. Randle has led the Knicks revolution this season as they are destined for a playoff run. With Randle playing at a high level, the Knicks are once again a top team to watch.
Oklahoma City Thunder: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander
No team can carry out a rebuild like the Oklahoma City Thunder. They finessed the Houston Rockets out of draft picks in the Russell Westbrook trade, and managed to grab more picks by trading Paul George and later Chris Paul. The Thunder are an exciting team for the future when looking at their draft assets and also by looking at future All-Star Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. Gilgeous-Alexander is averaging 23.7 PPG, 4.7 RPG, and 5.9 APG for the Thunder who are expected to be a very talented team over the next few years.
Orlando Magic: Jonathan Isaac
The Orlando Magic suddenly decided to trade their entire roster before the trading deadline this season. After all, they can't settle for mediocrity anymore. Nikola Vucevic, Aaron Gordon, and Evan Fournier are very good players but they weren't going to take Orlando out of the first round. By trading everyone and building around 2-way forward Jonathan Isaac, the Magic are on the right track. Isaac has yet to play a single game this season, but when he is healthy, he might be one of the best defensive players in the NBA.
Philadelphia 76ers: Joel Embiid
The 76ers have a 24-year-old triple-double threat in Ben Simmons, but Joel Embiid is their most untouchable player. Embiid is averaging 30.0 PPG and 11.1 RPG while making his 4th All-Star Team this season and has been dominant on both ends. With Embiid controlling the paint, the Sixers are holding the #2 seed in the Eastern Conference. As long as Embiid is healthy, Philadelphia are making the Eastern Conference Finals every year which makes the big man untouchable.
Phoenix Suns: Devin Booker
Phoenix might have two untouchable players, but due to young age, it has to be Devin Booker. The budding superstar has benefited greatly from time in the league and also the presence of Paul, and has elevated his all-around game tremendously. Booker is averaging 25.1 PPG, 4.2 RPG, and 4.5 APG for the contending Phoenix Suns. Chris Paul might get the most credit for elevating Phoenix, but Booker is the most untouchable piece on the roster.
Portland Trail Blazers: Damian Lillard
The heart and soul of Portland, Damian Lillard is one of the easiest inclusions into the untouchables list. Lillard has single-handedly made the Trail Blazers relevant in the West, and his offense has been off the charts once again this season. Lillard is averaging 28.5 PPG and 7.6 APG this year, placing Portland in another playoff seeding. For his ability to carry his team to the postseason every year, Lillard is untradeable.
Sacramento Kings: De'Aaron Fox
The Sacramento Kings have not taken the leap many expected of them this season, but De'Aaron Fox certainly has. Fox is averaging 25.2 PPG and 7.2 APG this season, and his floor leadership is getting better before our very eyes. The Kings have a franchise and All-Star point guard on their hands, so they need to make the most of it by acquiring an All-Star to take them to the next level. With Fox at the helm, the Kings have a bright future.
San Antonio Spurs: Dejounte Murray
The San Antonio Spurs do not have an All-Star on the roster right now other than 4-time All-Star DeMar DeRozan, but they do have Dejounte Murray. Murray is a special point guard because his defensive abilities are top-notch, and his offensive game is improving every year. Murray is averaging 15.4 PPG, 6.9 RPG, and 5.3 APG at the tender age of 24 years old. The Spurs have finally begun their rebuild and Murray should be at the core of it, not DeMar DeRozan.
Toronto Raptors: Pascal Siakam
Toronto seems to be heading for a rebuild, which means everyone should be available for trade. Kawhi Leonard is no longer on the roster, which means the Raptors have little to no shot of winning another NBA title this year. Kyle Lowry was shopped before the trade deadline, and Fred Vanleet is an undersized guard. Pascal Siakam is by far the Raptors best player and the franchise need to hold onto them for dear life. If they have any hopes of capturing NBA title #2, Siakam is the key.
Utah Jazz: Donovan Mitchell
The best team in the NBA has one of the best guards in the NBA. Donovan Mitchell is having a career year on offense, averaging 26.4 PPG and 5.2 APG while being the leader of the top dog in the West. Alongside Rudy Gobert, Mitchell is a part of one of the best duos in the NBA. Mitchell's scoring is the main part of Utah's dominance this season, and he is their untouchable without a doubt.
Washington Wizards: Bradley Beal
The Washington Wizards would be the worst team in the NBA if not for Bradley Beal. Beal's scoring kept Washington afloat while Russell Westbrook took his time to find his footing. With Westbrook getting his groove back, the Wizards are climbing towards a playoff seeding in the East. Beal's 31.1 PPG average is second behind Curry's 31.2 PPG.