NBA Tier 4: Average starting small forwards
22) Dillon Brooks, Houston Rockets
21) Lu Dort, Oklahoma City
20) Harrison Barnes, Sacramento Kings
19) Jaden McDaniel, Minnesota Timberwolves
18) De’Andre Hunter, Atlanta Hawks
17) Tobias Harris, Philadelphia 76ers
16) Keldon Johnson, San Antonio Spurs
Although the names in this tier probably don’t instill confidence, there are actually some good players here. Even then, they tend to be less well-rounded, with players like Dort, McDaniels, Hunter, and Brooks being more defensive players than offensive threats.
Brooks made first-team all-defense last season but was also one of the most inefficient offensive players in the NBA. Still, he signed a massive four-year, $80 million contract with the Rockets with the expectation that his defensive ability would rub off on a young team.
On the flip side, Johnson had a career year for the Spurs last season, averaging 22 points per game, despite his 3-point shot abandoning him after a blistering start to the year. If he improves to the mean as a shooter and builds on his improved finishing in the paint, then he is likely to lead the Spurs in scoring again and level up.
Meanwhile, Harris definitely took a step back last season but is still a good player on a bad contract. He has the largest expiring salary in the NBA at $39.7 million, and Philly is certain to try and trade him.