More often than not, young players get way too overhyped and unexperienced fans expect them to take the league for assault right out of the gate, instead of waiting for young players to develop and grow to fulfill their true potential.
Obviously, being as talented as they are, those youngsters show glimpses of their ceiling and prove that they’re a year or two away from becoming elite players, something that obviously gives a lot of hope for fans looking ahead to the future.
Even though some of these players may look like a finished product, we believe they’re still far below their ceiling and are yet to reach their prime, and today we’re going to let you know about the top 10 players with the most potential in the NBA.
Honorable Mention: Victor Oladipo
Oladipo was looking like kind of a bust after being the 2nd overall pick not so long ago, but after being traded away from the Oklahoma City Thunder in order to land Paul George, he was finally able to thrive on a successful environment as the team’s go-to-guy.
The young shooting guard has flourished as a scorer and even became a consistent jump shooter, while also making a huge impact on the defensive end of the floor, leading the league in steals, making it to his first All-Star and taking the reins of a very surprising and young Pacers squad en route to the playoffs.
10. Nikola Jokic
Nikola Jokic is already the best passing big man in the league, a walking triple-double threat and one of the few players that are going to be able to record a quadruple-double in the league right now due to his length and great playmaking ability.
Jokic is leading the Nuggets in almost every major stat this season, has a sweet scoring touch from distance and is more than capable of being a one-man fast break with his crafty ball handling ability, and he’s still just 23 years old.
9. Kristaps Porzingis
Kristaps Porzingis’ lone question mark over his head has to be his durability, as he’s missed a ton of games throughout his first years as an NBA player but has been a major stud every time he’s been able to set foot on the court.
The Unicorn is a lights-out shooter from deep and has grown to become a great rim protector as well, although he needs to put a lot of effort when it comes to rebounding the ball. Still, if injuries don’t take a toll on his career, he’s got the potential to be the second coming of Dirk Nowitzki.
8. Devin Booker
Devin Booker is the most versatile offensive young player in the league, and he’s already proven that he can get hot on the blink of an eye with a 70 point performance against the Boston Celtics, although his talents are completely going to waste with the lousy Phoenix Suns.
Booker has the potential to become a perennial All-Star and lead the league in scoring for a very long time, and when he develops a bit of a defensive awareness, he’s going to become one of the best two-way players in the world for sure.
7. Donovan Mitchell
Donovan Mitchell is the biggest steals of the past 5 NBA Drafts or so, making a strong case for the Rookie of the Year this season after almost single-handedly leading the Utah Jazz to playoff contention while Rudy Gobert was sidelined with a knee injury.
Mitchell is extremely quick and athletic and is a great pull up shooter as well, already racking up more 20 point games throughout his rookie campaign tan LeBron James, setting a new NBA record, and looking like a lock to the league in points on the foreseeable future.
6. Kyrie Irving
Even though Kyrie Irving has been around for some time now and has already even won an NBA Championship, he’s still quite young and just entering his prime, so there’s still a lot of room for improvement from what we’ve seen from Uncle Drew.
Believe it or not, it feels like Kyrie has been holding back ever since his rookie season, as he’s got the potential to be a 30 ppg kind of player, and we can definitely expect a huge comeback season following his knee surgery to end his tenure this campaign.
5. Karl-Anthony Towns
Karl-Anthony Tows is one of the most dominant scorers and rebounders of the league already, and he’s managed to improve his numbers on a yearly basis, so the sky seems to be the limit for the young man out of Kentucky.
He’s a terrific shot blocker also, although his defensive awareness is still mediocre and he gets constantly stuck between screens or makes mistakes while helping, but when he improves in that regard, he’s got the potential to be an MVP and DPOY just like Kevin Garnett once did.
4. Joel Embiid
There was a lot of doubts regarding Joel Embiid’s commitment to basketball and actual ability to translate his dominant game from the NCAA to the NBA, but it’s pretty safe to assume both doubts have been vastly cleared by The Process already.
Embiid made a huge case for the DPOY award this season and became an All-Star starter after his first full NBA season, and there’s absolutely no flaw in his overall game. His three-point shooting has regressed a bit, but he’s got a nice shooting form and the confidence to become the most dominant two-way center in the league for at least a decade.
3. Ben Simmons
Ben Simmons proved that he can be healthy throughout a full NBA season and that he can even lead the Sixers to success with Embiid on the shelf, already becoming an extremely dominant scorer despite just having attempted 11 three-pointers this season and shooting with the wrong hand.
Simmons is already one of the best passers in the league, a committed defender, and a guy that rarely makes mistakes with the rock on his hands, and he’s looking more and more like a Magic Johnson or Oscar Robertson kind of player, already being a lock to win this year’s ROY.
2. Anthony Davis
Just like Kyrie, we believe Davis is already a veteran and he’s been around for too long, but truth to be told, he’s nowhere near his prime already, and if injuries don’t wind up hurting his promising career, he’s a lock to become an MVP a year or two from now.
Davis is a fierce scorer that can put the best rim protectors in the world in skates or in a poster, while also being one of the best shot blockers in the world. The brow is still yet to lead the Pelicans the distance in the playoffs, but it’s just a matter of time before he explodes and carries his team at least to the WCF.
1. Giannis Antetokounmpo
Giannis has already won the league’s Most Improved Player award, but truth to be told, he could actually win it over and over, as he’s perhaps the most hardworking young man in the league, the first guy in the gym and the last one to leave it, and a player that puts a lot of effort between season to work on his game.
So, if he’s already one of the league’s most exciting superstars and a lock to win the MVP one day, could you imagine how dominant he would be if he developed a consistent jump shot? He could lead the league in scoring, even become a DPOY candidate and moreover, lead the Bucks to their first NBA Finals appearance in a very, very long time.