The Washington Post’s Top 100 list projects the premier NBA talents for the 2021-22 season. The rankings, compiled by national NBA writer Ben Golliver, are meant to assess each player’s relative value without regard to his specific role or teammates. Among the factors considered: last year’s performance (as judged by traditional per-game statistics and advanced metrics), current health, injury history, age, consistency, contributions to winning, ability to make teammates better, off-court concerns, postseason performance and offensive and defensive impact.
Salary, expected earning power and projected growth or decline beyond the 2021-22 season were not considered. All rookies were excluded. Veterans who have been unavailable due to injuries or other concerns — Kawhi Leonard, Zion Williamson, Kyrie Irving, Ben Simmons and Jamal Murray, among others — were included because they have not been ruled out for the entire 2021-22 season, but their rankings were adjusted to reflect their situations. Stats shown are from the 2020-21 season (or the last season played by Klay Thompson and Jonathan Isaac) and the smaller circles indicate changes from last season’s rankings. Rankings were set on Oct. 17.
Photographs and images used in photoillustrations by The Washington Post, AP, Getty Images, USA Today Sports. Virginia Singarayar, Brianna Schroer and Brian Gross contributed to the design of this page.