S : Best in the game (LeBron)
A+ : Right on heels of best player (Durant)
A : Top 5 player
A- : Top players at their position/Potential All-NBA players
B+ : All-Stars
B : Good starters/fringe All-Stars
B- : Good starter
C+ : decent starter
C : fringe starter/bench player
C- : good bench player
D+ : average bench player
D : Fringe rotation player
D- : bad player
F : not NBA caliber
Factors: production+efficiency+talent (emphasis on this year but whole career taken into account)
*Note: There is no specific order within each tier
For the purpose of these grades/rankings, I am not looking at last season in a vacuum. I am trying to give an idea of where each of these players stands in regards to each other after last season. One poor season doesn't sink a player's stock if the rest of his career paints a different story, the exact opposite is true as well. However, I am not factoring potential into my rankings, meaning rookies are graded as NBA players and do not garner special consideration because of their youth.
I'm probably making this more complicated and subjective than it needs to be, but I suppose that only makes for more discussion. With that being said, on to the rankings.
These guys are the best in the game right now. What Duncan did last year was incredible; putting up his best season in years and being named First Team All-NBA... at 37 years old. Wow.
Nowitzki and Randolph are starting to slow down as they age, but they're still pretty darn good. Lee and Aldridge are very productive players in the prime of their careers. Griffin hasn't progressed as quickly as some might have expected, but he's a double-double threat every single night and one of the most exciting players in the league. Bosh has sacrificed his individual numbers to play with LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, but he's still one of the best in the game.
Wow. There are a lot of good power forwards in the NBA. STAT is difficult to place because when he's been on the court, he's still been pretty effective. He's just been hurt so much and with his history it's hard to see him bouncin back to consistent health.
Anthony Davis is going to be incredible in a couple years. Millsap is a cagey vet and Ibaka has had a few years to develop, and Davis was on their level as a rookie. The only thing that held him back were injuries. Let's all hope he can get past them this coming season.
Solid, solid players that can bring plenty to a team. A lights-out shooter, a crafty post player and a few double-double guys round out the group.
These guys are productive players that would look really good coming off the bench but can also start and hold their own if necessary. It's a diverse group, but a pretty talented one. Again, there a re a ton of good power forwards in the league.
This is a mix of young players with potential, useful journeymen and veterans nearing the end but still effective. All these guys can really bring something to a team coming off the bench.
These guys all have their own skills and are rotation-worthy players.
These guys can be rotation players in the right situation. They've proven they belong on a roster at the very least.
Kieff's inability to be effective consistently lands him in this spot. I haven't completely given up on him, but I'm close.
Yuck yuck yuck.
Plenty of current and former Sun on this list. Unfortunately, most of them are pretty far down the list. Here's to hoping for a giant step forward from Markieff Morris and a complete return to health for Channing Frye.