The NBA season is entering the final stretch before the playoffs, and there has been quite a bit of excitement all season long. There are some teams that are obviously going to make the playoffs, but there are other teams that are looking to make a last-minute push to get into the postseason.
next 10 NBA superstars
NBA: Ranking the next 10 potential superstars
10. Jabari Parker, Milwaukee Bucks
Jabari Parker saw his rookie season end with a torn ACL earlier this year, but he still showed enough talent to land him the last spot on this list. There is no question that the Milwaukee Bucks have a potential superstar on their hands, and they are still planning to build around him in the future.
During the 25 games that Parker played before his injury, Parker averaged 12.3 points, 5.5 rebounds, and 1.7 assists per game. He shot 49.0 percent from behind the field, but could use some work from behind the three-point arc. Milwaukee will need him to flourish over the next few years, and he will be given every opportunity to do so.
He has the ideal physique and athleticism to become a force in the NBA, and Jason Kidd will do an excellent job coaching him up when he comes back. Milwaukee has been a major surprise this season, but they will be even better next year with Parker on the court.
(Photo by Glenn James/NBAE via Getty Images)
9. Michael Carter-Williams, Milwaukee Bucks
The Milwaukee Bucks were very active at the trade deadline, and were able to acquire Michael Carter-Williams from the Philadelphia 76ers. Jabari Parker and Carter-Williams are going to be a very dangerous duo moving forward, and Jason Kidd has plenty of tools at his disposal on the young roster.
Carter-Williams played in 41 games earlier this year with the 76ers, and averaged 15.0 points, 7.4 assists, and 6.2 rebounds. He shot just 38.0 percent from the field overall and 25.6 percent from behind the three-point arc, which shows how much work he needs to do offensively. Kidd is an ideal head coach for Carter-Williams to learn from, and he could help take him to the next level.
At just 23 years old, there is so much potential for Carter-Williams to grow into. Milwaukee has three of the top-ten players with a chance to become superstars in the future, and their new point guard is going to be a threat to be reckoned with for opponents.
(Photo by Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images)
8. Giannis Antetokounmpo, Milwaukee Bucks
Speaking of the third member of the potential superstar group on the Milwaukee Bucks, the “Greek Freak” Giannis Antetokounmpo is another standout looking ahead into the future. Milwaukee hasn’t had this much talent on their roster in quite some time, but the 6-foot-11 small forward could potentially end up being the best player on the roster.
This season, he has averaged 12.1 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 2.4 assists per game. He has also averaged a block and steal per game as well.
If he wants to take the next step, he’ll need to improve his all-around offensive game. Despite some of the things he needs to improve, the Bucks still have major confidence that the 20-year-old athletic freak will figure it all out and rise to his full potential.
(Photo by Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images)
7. Reggie Jackson, Detroit Pistons
The Detroit Pistons were very active at the trade deadline, and acquired point guard Reggie Jackson from the Oklahoma City Thunder. It was a perfect pickup for them after Brandon Jennings went down with a torn Achilles earlier in the year, and Jackson will finally be given the full-time starting job that he has been wanting.
Prior to the trade, Jackson had averaged 12.8 points, 4.3 assists, and 4.0 rebounds per game.
In two games with the Pistons since the deal, he has averaged 19.5 points, 7.0 assists, and 5.0 rebounds per game. Those numbers show exactly why the Pistons gave up the value to acquire him, and the future is incredibly bright.
Jackson is 24 years old and is ready to explode onto the scene now that he has gotten the starting job he was looking for. Detroit runs a perfect system for Jackson, and it is going to be very interesting to watch him and see how he continues to improve with more playing time.
(Photo by Allen Einstein/NBAE via Getty Images)
6. Jimmy Butler, Chicago Bulls
It has been a very impressive season for Chicago Bulls budding star Jimmy Butler, who made his All-Star game debut this season. He has emerged at the right time, and has been the Bulls’ leading scorer all season long.
Now that Derrick Rose is reportedly done for the season with a torn meniscus, Butler is going to have even more of an opportunity to prove himself to the NBA. He has averaged 20.3 points, 5.9 rebounds and 3.3 assists per game. His defensive ability separates him from a lot of other players in the league, and he is quickly becoming one of the better stars in the NBA.
Chicago needs him to take the next step moving forward, especially if Rose doesn’t return to form.
Butler has every skill needed to take the next step to becoming a superstar, and his work ethic has never been questioned throughout his career.
(Photo by Gary Dineen/NBAE via Getty Images)
5. Victor Oladipo, Orlando Magic
Another extremely talented young player, is 22-year-old Orlando Magic shooting guard Victor Oladipo. He has talent on both ends of the court, and is without question the franchise player for the Magic.
This season in Orlando, Oladipo has averaged 16.7 points, 4.1 rebounds, and 3.8 assists per game. He has shot 44.6 percent from the field overall 32.9 percent from behind the three-point arc. It is going to be very entertaining to watch as he continues to develop over the course of the next couple seasons.
There is no question that Oladipo has the type of potential needed to become a superstar. The Magic are going to continue playing through him, and he will continue growing as his hard work pays off.
(Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images)
4. Eric Bledsoe, Phoenix Suns
The Phoenix Suns just made some big trades at the deadline, but they kept Eric Bledsoe around after giving him a new contract this past offseason. He is without question good enough to become a superstar, and at 25 he is ready to take the next step with another offseason or two of work.
Bledsoe is an extremely athletic guard that has built a complete game to go along with that athleticism. He has averaged 17.1 points, 6.0 assists, and 5.3 rebounds per game. Not only has his offense been impressive, he has also been solid on the defensive end of the court with 1.7 steals per game.
It is going to be interesting to see how Bledsoe finished up this year, and also what he looks like coming out of the upcoming offseason. Phoenix has given him the keys to the franchise and he can’t afford to let them down with all of the potential that he has.
(Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)
3. Gordon Hayward, Utah Jazz
Gordon Hayward is another very promising young player. At 24, he is already showing signs of the superstar potential. He received a maximum contract this past offseason, and it has paid off for the Utah Jazz with big numbers so far this year.
Through the 55 games, Hayward has averaged 19.6 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 4.2 assists per game.
Utah has been in a rebuilding process for the last few seasons, but they have stockpiled enough talent to finally begin turning things around. Hayward is without a doubt their best player, and they need him to continue stepping up and improving at the pace that he has been.
There is no denying his all-around game, and the improvements that he has made to it so far this year. If he can improve his defense a bit more and become a better passer, there aren’t going to be many defenders that can stop him.
(Photo by Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images)
2. Andrew Wiggins, Minnesota Timberwolves
The Minnesota Timberwolves traded away franchise player Kevin Love this past offseason to the Cleveland Cavaliers, and got back first overall pick Andrew Wiggins. It was a tough trade to make, but it is one that they may very well look back on and smile about.
Love hasn’t done well with the Cavaliers, but Wiggins has been turning things on over the past few weeks. He has averaged 15.6 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 1.9 assists per game. Those numbers don’t look too terribly impressive, but he has been picking them up consistently of late.
It will be very fun to see what type of future Wiggins ends up having. Minnesota is very close to turning things around and getting back into the playoffs, and Wiggins is going to be counted on to lead the way for them.
(Photo by David Sherman/NBAE via Getty Images)
1. Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers
One player that may already be above this list for some fans and analysts is Portland Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard. He is in his third NBA season and has already taken the league by storm. Not only is he one of the best point guards in the league, he is turning into one of the best all-around players in the league as well.
This season, Lillard has averaged 21.4 points, 6.2 assists, and 4.6 rebounds per game. He has shot 43.3 percent from the floor and 33.8 percent from behind the three-point arc.
Portland has developed one of the best duos in the game between Lillard and LaMarcus Aldridge, and are a legitimate contender in the Western Conference this season. Lillard is without a doubt close to joining the elite group of NBA players, and it could very well happen following this season.
(AP Photo/Butch Dill)
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There are a few different superstars in the league. LeBron James, James Harden, Stephen Curry, and players on that level count as superstars. That being said, there aren't a ton of them around but there are quite a few that are very close to taking the leap into that category.
Superstars are a major driving force in the NBA, and the teams that have them are often the top playoff contenders.
That is the case once again this year, although there are quite a few players that have the potential to become superstars in the future. It has been very entertaining to see all of the young talent this year, and the future is bright for the next crop of stars in the league.