2022-23 NBA Lookahead: Zion Williamson, Ben Simmons, Anthony Edwards among 10 most interesting players

If a dead time exists in the year-long NBA calendar, it’s early August. As we all sit in the Kevin Durant-Kyrie Irving-Donovan Mitchell holding pattern, all we can do right now is start moving forward with the information currently available. So I’m going to list out the 10 players I’m most excited to see in the 2022-23 season. They’re all there for slightly different reasons, but they all have great intrigue. Let’s do it.

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After playing only 85 games through his first three NBA seasons, Williamson was given a five-year contract extension this summer that is guaranteed to pay him $193 million and could be worth up to $231 million . There is a load clause in the transaction. If Williamson has a body-fat percentage and his weight is over 295, he may lose a portion of the guaranteed money, but this is only triggered when pelican forgive him. If that happens, things will be completely derailed.

For all intents and purposes, the Pelicans are on the hook for paying a man who has fought mightily over the next five years to remain in court the cap-crushing amount of the coin. They’re doing it because when Williamson Is He has been virtually invincible in court. His scoring prowess has ranged between extraordinary and downright historic. His ability to go down the left side, often starting a beat before the catch, when everyone knows where he wants to go, is uncanny. The second jump doesn’t come faster or more explosive than that.

Anyway, we don’t need the Zion Scouting Report. that is very good. And so can the Pelicans if he plays a game 65-70. To me, he is the most interesting player going into the league this season.

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Enter this under bookkeeping for “obvious reasons.” The expectation for Simmons to return to the court couldn’t have been higher after last season’s drama. First and foremost, is he mentally ready to play? Net teased that Simmons could return against at the end of his playoff series Celtics, but then eliminated it when they went down 3-0. Was it really just a physical problem?

I’m not sure anyone, even within the Nets, has a firm grasp on what to expect from Simmons. If Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving stay in Brooklyn, it would seem like a good position for Simmons, who won’t have to be the main producer/scorer and can focus on defense, transition, cutting/rolling and secondary builds. But does he have this kind of peripheral offensive to play? so many questions.

If Simmons is on the court, everyone will be watching closely in a hurry, and for me, I’ll be rooting for him. It’s weird for me to say that. I never particularly liked Simmons’ game and I hated him, like everyone else, for the way he handled his Philadelphia exit. Back when everyone couldn’t stop raving about how uniquely great he was, I couldn’t stand the “I’m smarter than you” talk. Now that everyone thought she might kind of stink, especially in a playoff setting, I’ve flipped. Now I’m rooting for him. It’s weird, but a No. 1 overall pick at Max Contract has really become an underdog. I dig it.

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If Murray is fit for Denver on opening night, it would have been almost 18 months since he last played an NBA game in April of 2021 after tearing his ACL. Personally, I can’t wait to see them play again. Murray could be one of the league’s most energized players, and if he is right – and especially if Michael Porter Jr. is also healthy – nuggets Top level title contender. But how long will the undead need to be back in motion? One thing Denver doesn’t have to worry about is consistency. Murray and Nikola Jokic should pick up where they left off as a tandem.

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There are a handful of super-interesting badass we’re all going to keep a close eye on, but to me, Holmgren is the most intriguing. If you’ve seen him in the Summer League you know his shape-skill combination is weird. Will he keep the physicality? Are we making her a very slim frame like we did with Kevin Durant? I can’t wait to see Holmgren making room for SGA’s drive on the floor and Josh Giddy playing through. If that rim protector is, say the experts, he could be pretty special right away.

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Edwards is on the threshold of stardom. There is no more breathtaking athlete in the league than this and the charisma with which he scores is intoxicating. This man legitimately believes that he is invincible, and he may be right. Let’s pump that 35 percent 3-point number closer to the 40 percent shot in the playoffs and we’ll be talking serious business. With Rudy Gobert, Minnesota is going for it. Will go a long way toward how great Edwards can be on a frequent basis at both ends, whatever “this” means.

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Lillard basically took off last season. He says that he is healthy now. The Blazers revamped their roster with Jeremy Grant and Gary Peyton II to provide Lillard. hopefully Adequate defensive support. Still, the Blazers could also be a halfway episodic player in the West, if Lillard turns out to be a superhero. We have seen him do this before. I’m betting he’ll harness his powers again. Lillard is the closest thing to Stephen Curry. When that warms up, drop whatever you’re doing and tune in. And he’s going on a mission to be as hot as possible this season, as often as possible.

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Same deal as Lillard and Murray. It’s been a while since we’ve seen Leonard, who took all the time last season to recover from a torn ACL. There’s just the excitement of seeing him play again, and the question of whether he’ll still be a top-five player in the league. This is because he will at least on given nights. Yes, there is a cumulative injury history of playing here, but he is still only 31 years old. With Paul George recovering and perhaps the deepest roster in the league, shear Perhaps the contenders are primed for the vault at the top of the hierarchy.

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It’s year three for Wiseman. His rookie season left a lot to be desired. He sat out his second season. time to see if it’s all hype Warrior’s Throwing around about Wiseman’s supposedly limitless potential is also half-hearted. He will not be the starting center of the Golden State. That distinction goes to Kevon Looney. But he needs to be at least a genuine contributor.

The Warriors have massive tax bills and potentially imminent contract extensions for Draymond Green, Andrew Wiggins and Jordan Poole. Don’t rule out trading them to avoid one or two of those long-term commitments, and of course Wiseman can be involved in such transactions on a return basis. Either moving in as a core piece or going out a central asset in a business, this season has a lot of eyes on Wiseman.

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lakers, as it is currently built, and assuming LeBron James can still play like one of the best players in the league, there is one chance to compete for the top four seed: Davis has to be a superstar. For starters, he has to be in court; He has played only 76 games in the last two seasons. Limit his minutes to five. That’s fine until playoff time. But he has to be great at four.

Defensively, he has to cover a lot. Offensively, it mostly comes down to his shooting. If he’s going to continue shooting 3s, it may not be at the 19-percent clip that he logged last season or even the 27-percent from 2020-21. Bubble Davis was an anomaly, but the man started last season as the worst shooter in the league with over 150 attempts.

Davies ticks off his prowess on paper by attacking more in the post and on the rim, but I believe there is a conservation element at play here. It’s a lot to bang around the post all season, especially in a two-big lineup without a lot of shooting around the stars. The midrange is Davis’s cushion. He may settle for it too much and get carried away unnecessarily, but he needs to be in that area very often for practical purposes. There isn’t much room for error in this Lakers squad. Davis has to continue to perform well. Frankly, the same applies whether or not the Lakers are finally getting Kyrie Irving, though clearly more if they don’t.

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No one is ready to call Brown a superstar, but he is not far off. He is not so great that he cannot be included in business discussions, but at the same time he feels too great and too small to actually trade. It’s a very fine line that Boston is walking by considering ousting a founding star or moving him at the potential cost of leaving too soon on a Brown-Tatum tandem that could provide more than a decade of genuine controversy. But if they can get Kevin Durant? It’s hard not to think about it.

For me, the Browns can take another leap this season. Whether that makes him so attractive to the Nets to lower the price of his demand on additional properties or shut the door for Boston to officially deal with him, who knows. But Brown has a superstar game. There are a lot of nights when he is Boston’s best player. I love watching him play, despite handling his (multiple times) butterfinger ball. To me, Brown is one of the toughest players in the league. He is in between All-Star and All-NBA. This season presents another batch of evidence that I look forward to considering.

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