43 active players have made an All-NBA team. That includes players like John Wall and Kemba Walker who likely won’t get back to that plateau, as well as a number of one-off performers (Victor Oladipo, Goran Dragic). Yet it includes most of the major MVP candidates as well, and the players expected to make an All-NBA team will mostly come from that group.
The NBA is a league filled with stars and driven by stars. In the NFL or MLB the best players each season are a mix of recurring stars (think Mike Trout or Aaron Donald) but also plenty of one-hit wonders who have a great season and fade back into the mist.
The NBA is a league absolutely loaded with stars. Donovan Mitchell leads a group of five players with a chance at making their first All-NBA team.
That happens occasionally, as with Dragic and Oladipo above, but it isn’t a mainstay. Last season 13 of the 15 players to make an All-NBA team were repeat selections. The two newcomers, Devin Booker and Ja Morant, were MVP candidates and will likely be multi-time selections. The best players in the NBA tend to be the best players year after year. Guys like Stephen Curry, Giannis Antetokounmpo and Jayson Tatum look like All-NBA mainstays who will fill much of the team again this year.
With that in mind, who is breaking in this season? Which players are having all-league seasons, and could not only make an All-NBA team, but make several over the course of their careers? Let’s take a look at one player looking like a lock before expanding our list to five potential first-timers have remarkable seasons.