Ranking the Last 10 NBA No.1 Draft Picks

Being the first pick in the NBA draft does not necessarily mean the player turns out to be exceptionally great. Time and time again we see some of them become the worst busts in the NBA. While some turn out to be just average players, there could also be others who become legit superstars. Today, we will be ranking the last 10 first picks in the NBA draft and see who gets to be picked number 1 again.

#10. Anthony Bennet (2013, Cleveland Cavaliers)

Anthony Bennet, Photo Courtesy of Bleacher Report

Whatever happened to Anthony Bennet?

Bennet was for real a straight-up NBA bust. A lot of fans were outraged that he got picked first overall back in 2013. Though, to be fair, aside from Rudy Gobert, Victor Oladipo, and Giannis Antetokounmpo, that draft seems to be unsatisfactory.

He only played 4 years in the league and never averaged more than 5 points per game. Later on, he left the NBA to play overseas to become … an overseas bust. Hopefully, Bennet bounces back in the latter part of his basketball career.

#9. Markelle Fultz (2017, Philadelphia 76ers)

Markelle Fultz, Photo Courtesy of Sports Illustrated

Fultz had his lowest moments when he forgot to shoot the basketball, err, I mean to create his shots. He had the potential to become a good slashing guard but injuries stopped that from happening. Most of the fans are already considering him as a bust since he was picked no.1. But, hey, Fultz is balling in Orlando Magic and is currently averaging 11 points per contest. Who knows, maybe he’ll get back on his feet.

Related: Raptors’ Scottie Barnes Named NBA 2022 Rookie of the Year

#8. Cade Cunningham (2021, Detroit Pistons)

Cade Cunningham, photo courtesy of pistonpowered.com

The 2022 Clorox Rising Stars MVP, Cade Cunningham, is ranked 8th in this list for obvious reasons. One, it’s still too early to say that he will turn out to be an excellent player. Two, he definitely has a high ceiling but everybody in the NBA has that, don’t they? And, lastly, though he has proven himself to be a future star in the making, he did not win the Rookie of the Year award.

#7. Deandre Ayton (2018, Phoenix Suns)

DeAndre Ayton, Photo Courtesy of zonazealota.com

The 7-footer DeAndre Ayton is a consistent double-double machine and is a very reliable center for the Phoenix Suns. Although he is already great in his own right, there are a lot of names that come up in the 2018 class that is way better than Ayton like Luka Doncic, Trae Young, and Michael Porter Jr.

We can safely assume that Ayton still has a lot to improve on but his current status is already undeniably acceptable.

#6. Anthony Edwards (2020, Minnesota Timberwolves)

Anthony Edwards, Photo Courtesy of sportingnews.com

The Ant-Man, Anthony Edwards, is a very athletic guard with the body of a forward. He can shoot, he can dunk, he can defend – he can do it all. Though he hasn’t won anything yet, we can see a lot of potential glaring from Edwards. In his draft class, he is a close second to the already All-Star LaMelo Ball. When shall we see Edwards in the All-Star game?

Also, doesn’t he look a lot like Michael Jordan? The resemblance is just so uncanny. Hope he’s got the talents of MJ, too!

#5. Zion Williamson (2019, New Orleans Pelicans)

Photo Courtesy of fadeawayworld.net

Zion, when healthy, is half beast and half-human. No one comes close to his stature and physique. He’s 6-foot-8 and 280 pounds for goodness sake. Even at his size, Zion is extremely athletic and very agile.

Joining LeBron James, Zion probably is one of the most hyped hoopers before coming into the league. But, the hype is very real. The 21-year-old rising star was selected as an All-Star last year, 2021. With his talent and skills, he already has a chance to be ranked higher on this list but the only drawback is his “durability”. We know that he hasn’t played for more than a year now because of a foot injury. Though the Pelicans are optimistic he will be healthy next season, fans are still wary of Zion’s status.

#4. Andrew Wiggins (2014, Minnesota Timberwolves via Cleveland Cavaliers)

Andrew Wiggins, Photo Courtesy of dunkinwithwolves.com

Believe it or not, Andrew Wiggins is extremely talented. I just don’t know why people can’t see it. Maybe it was because he was playing for the Wolves?

Andrew is a reliable scorer who can shoot the ball anywhere on the court. He can easily give you 20 points on any given night. Just recently, he was selected, not just as an All-Star, but as an All-Star starter while playing alongside Steph Curry, Draymond Green, and Klay Thompson. During the 2022 NBA Finals, he also proved everyone wrong with his stellar performances.

Why is he 4th? Is he better than Zion?

People aren’t going to like this, but … Yes, Wiggins is better than Zion. Even if both are healthy, Wiggins still has the better game: Better defender, better shooter, and a better playmaker.

#3. Ben Simmons (2016, Philadelphia 76ers)

Photo Courtesy of sports.yahoo.com

Oh, if it isn’t the back-to-back-to-back Rookie of the Year, Ben Simmons. Even if you hate the guy, you know that deep in your heart that Ben, when healthy (physically and mentally) is a top 10 player in the league. That is not an opinion, that is a fact.

A 6-foot-10 point guard who has excellent playmaking ability, can score immediately in the paint, and is a terrific defender? Nothing can beat that! If only he has the “Mamba Mentality”, Ben Simmons could easily be an MVP material.

#2. Karl-Anthony Towns (2015, Minnesota Timberwolves)

Rookie Karl-Anthony Towns, Photo Courtesy of usatoday.com

Well, it’s a tough decision to put KAT as the 2nd on this list. But, seeing how Towns has evolved into one of the greatest big men in the league today goes to show that he deserves to be in this spot.

Karl-Anthony Towns is already surpassing Dirk Nowitzki as the greatest shooting big man in history. Well, that’s a bit of an overstatement, but there’s a great chance KAT could do that in the future.

#1. Anthony Davis (2012, New Orleans Hornets)

Anthony Davis, Photo Courtesy of NBA

Amongst all the players on the list, Anthony Davis has the best career so far. At a very young age, he is already considered a Hall-of-Famer and was named into the 75 Greatest Players in history. The Brow easily wins this one by a mile, there’s no doubt about that. Every list asking this question should put Davis as the number one overall.

On the down side, Davis is pretty susceptible to injuries. Should we worry about this?

Do you agree with our list? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below. For more content, stay with us, here at Spiel Times.

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