ESPN.com & the TrueHoop Network recently ranked the top 500 players in the NBA according to 104 experts using a scale of 0-to-10, some of you may have seen the hashtag #NBArank on Twitter, here's how the former Syracuse players ranked:
Left off this list were Andy Rautins & Rick Jackson who have recently joined up with teams for the pre-season. Andy will be playing with the defending Western Conference Champion Oklahoma City Thunder & Rick will be joining the Golden State Warriors. While I don't expect either player to make a 15-man roster I would love to see them both on an NBA bench.
#489 - Darryl Watkins (1.74)
Watkins was traded to Philadelphia in July & was then waived. He signed with a Bulgarian Team Lukoil Academic in August. Having only minor stints in the NBA he played 5 games at the end of last year with the New Orleans Hornets from April 18-26, 1 game he even recorded 13 rebounds. He ended with a double-double in his final game scored 13 pts & grabbed 10 boards in 42 minutes of play. Hopefully for Mookie he gets another shot one day in the NBA.
#467 - Kris Joseph (1.99)
Despite having a solid & surprisingly good Summer League, Kris does not have an guaranteed roster spot. He will have to continue to play hard in the pre-seaon to wow Doc Rivers & Danny Ainge.
#389 - Fab Melo (2.62)
I'm curious to see how Fab adopts to the NBA style of play. I expect him to have a lot of trouble in his first season as we witnessed in his Orange debut as a Freshman. Lucky for him he doesn't have to go to classes in the NBA & maybe KG will teach him something useful.
#386 - Jonny Flynn (2.63)
Flynn spent last season in Houston & then Portland but only played in 29 total games (started 1). He has recently joined the Detroit Piston's pre-season roster & will have to make a huge impression to make the roster which already consists of 15 guaranteed contracts. Flynn who was one of the most exciting SU players that we've seen has been troubled by injuries, wherever Jonny winds up down the road we'll always have the 6-OT thriller.
#336 - Donte Greene (2.98)
Donte finished up his 4th season with Sacramento & hit the free agent market, he was given a preseason camp invite by the Brooklyn Nets but then suffered an ankle injury while working out in Charlotte which turned out to be "worse then a simple fracture." I would be surprised to see Green on an NBA roster anytime soon until he can fully recover from the unfortunate injury.
#322 - Wesley Johnson (3.13)
Wes started 64/65 games last year for Minnesota but only averaged 22.6 min & about 6 points per game. In July he was traded to Phoenix as part of a 3 team trade that sent Hakim Warrick to New Orleans. According to Rotoworld & the Arizona Republic, Wes is excited about a fresh start with the Suns: "When asked about his experience with the Timberwolves, Johnson said, "it wasn't a good fit," but went on to say that the Suns offense suits his style of play better. "They get out in transition, and that fits my style." GM Lance Blanks said that the Suns still view Johnson as an "emerging player," and also said that Johnson "shoots the ball extremely well." Johnson hasn't shot above 40 percent in either of his two seasons in the NBA and is a career 39.8 percent shooter."
#293 - Dion Waiters (3.39)
Despite being the #4 overall pick in this past NBA Draft, Dion has a lot to prove. In what is expected to be "streaky scoring" all season, Dion is expected to start at SG when the Cavs open the season. It was just reported a few days ago that Waiters has dropped 10 pounds since the summer league. Hopefully Dion shows all the haters that he can really play, but as LeBron knows Cleveland can turn on you quick.
#272 - Hakim Warrick (3.56)
Despite what seemed like a lot of solid performances over the years, Hak has never been able to consistently crack the starting line-up anywhere he's been. He is expected to get some playing time this season at PF & SF after being traded to New Orleans in the off-season. Last year in Phoenix he played only 35 games & had 0 starts. I came across this info from March from RotoWorld & the Arizona Republic: The Suns are 6-1 at home since they erected "Bones Warrick" in their locker room, a skeleton wearing Hakim Warrick's jersey, headband, arm-sleeve and shoes. Warrick, who is averaging 7.0 points in 15 minutes per game this year, said that "the worse I eat, the more I can't gain weight. I can eat anything -- Wendy's or whatever. It just doesn't stick to me." At first he wasn't thrilled about his skeletal alter ego, understandably, but now that the Suns are winning he says "we've got to leave it all season."
#17 - Carmelo Anthony (8.08)
As everyone knows, Melo has been busy this summer winning another gold medal with Team USA. Knicks fans don't care about Melo's medals & it's time for him to lead the Knicks back to the playoffs. Having to contend with LeBron & the Heat in the East, the Knicks will need a complete season from their Big 3, Melo, Amare & Tyson Chandler. Don't worry the Knicks have made some moves in the offseason, they let Jeremy Lin leave for Houston, replacing him with Jason Kidd about 10 years late as he is now 39. But wait they traded for Marcus Camby who is only 38 & Kurt Thomas who turns 40 today. Last time Camby & Kurt played together the Knicks went to the NBA Finals in 1999 so maybe it's a good sign of things to come. Win or lose Melo will have to take the fall.