Tier 5: Solid players, not needle movers
19. Steven Adams, Memphis Grizzlies
18. Wendell Carter Jr, Orlando Magic
17. Jakob Poeltl, San Antonio Spurs
16. Jusuf Nurkic, Portland Trail Blazers
Adams has been one of the league’s top rebounders and screen-setters for the better part of a decade, and Memphis relied on his presence during their miracle run ost year. The Magic might be in for yet another tough season, but Carter has proven that he’s a long-term piece worth keeping.
Poeltl, who was drafted alongside Siakam in 2016, is one of the few diamonds that continue to shine on an increasingly bleak Spurs roster. Siakam’s old running mate is right on par with a Bosnian standout in Nurkic. Portland needs a strong year out of him to bounce back and make the playoffs.
Tier 4: Higher-end Starters on playoff teams
15. Bobby Portis, Milwaukee Bucks
14. Myles Turner, Indiana Pacers
13. Kristaps Porzingis, Washington Wizards
12. Clint Capela, Atlanta Hawks
11. Nikola Vucevic, Chicago Bulls
10. Jonas Valanciunas, New Orleans Pelicans
Both Turner and Capela have been traded 50,000 times in the Fanspo simulator over the last few months, but it looks like both of their respective teams will hold onto two players who could be All-Stars at their absolute peak. Portis’ much-improved all-around game is precisely what Milwaukee needs from their center.
Porzingis can be one of the most frustrating players in the league, but he’ll continue to earn starting gigs as long as his 7-3 frame piles up the double-doubles. Valanciunas may not get the hype that other elite centers get, but the man under whom Siakam spent his first seasons as an understudy was dominant for New Orleans last year.
Toronto Raptors: Pascal Siakam is better than a fringe All-Star.
Tier 3: Fringe All-Stars
9. Robert Williams, Boston Celtics
8. Jarrett Allen, Cleveland Cavaliers
7. Deandre Ayton, Phoenix Suns
6. Domantas Sabonis, Sacramento Kings
Williams and Allen are going to be a significant thorn in Toronto’s side during the next few years, though Siakam has some distinct advantages over both of them on the offensive side of the ball. The defensive stalwart Allen may have been an All-Star in 2021-22, but Pascal pushed past him in the second half.
Ayton will be a cornerstone in Phoenix, but his playoff performance last year has done a number on his status within the league. Even though Sabonis has multiple All-Stars on his resume, Siakam’s red-hot season catapulted him in front of an unfortunate soul confined to NBA Siberia over in Sacramento.