The FutureFrom this year’s All-Stars to future All-Stars, this group of five have been turning heads since the first day they stepped onto the court. Playing in cities like New York, Philadelphia and Miami, the footsteps are massive, but this group has the skills and personality to fill them.
The fans from the City of Brotherly Love waited a long time for Embiid to lace ’em up and return the Sixers to prominence. Sam Hinkie’s vision of “The Process” is starting to come to fruition, and that is evident in the impact that Embiid has had this season. Though limited by a minute restriction, when on the floor, the former Kansas Jayhawk has done it all, from rebound to scoring, as he is averaging close to three blocks a game. If this is what we should expect from Embiid, who can imagine what he will do with Ben Simmons distributing the rock.
If the NBA is envisioning a reincarnation of the rivalry between Russell and Chamberlain, it may find it in Embiid and Towns. Towns, along with Andrew Wiggins and Zach Lavine, make the Timberwolves a team to watch for the future. Under the watchful defensive mind of Tom Thibodeau, this young trio will be versatile on offense and defense. If K.A.T.’s best years are to come, then his recent stretch of 30-plus points a game has no ceiling.
As trade rumors swirl around Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony, the time where Kristaps Porzingis as lead dog is quickly arriving. When Phil Jackson was able to select “The Unicorn” with the fourth pick in the 2015 Draft, he knew what a gifted player he was getting in the Latvian. Porzingis was viewed as a project when analyzed prior to the draft. It’s now obvious to all that this “project” will shortly become the Marquee on Broadway.
It’s rare that a talent like Myles Turner falls out of the top ten picks of the draft. The Pacers benefited from a great draft class, snagging the former Texas Longhorn that late. Turner has been inconsistent in his first season and a half in the league. That may have changed this month, where Turner is contributing 18 points and seven rebounds for the surging Pacers.
If Turner was a steal, then Hassan Whiteside was highway robbery. The Heat benefited from grabbing Whiteside at the right time. After bouncing around the Developmental League and being waived by a few teams, the seven-footer has found a home and a big contract with Pat Riley’s crew. There are some concerns that he is unable to stay on the floor, but when active, Whiteside provides additional heat in South Beach.