1. Greg Oden, Trail Blazers
Oden has played just OK in the preseason, which is to be expected due to his long layoff and the type of knee surgery he's coming back from.
But if the NBA's Most Improved Player award was based on in-season play as opposed to play from one season to the next, I think Oden would be the favorite. When his mind and body catch up to the speed of the game, he should be a monster every night.
7. Rudy Fernandez, Trail Blazers
In just his second NBA preseason game, Fernandez tallied 15 points, five rebounds, seven assists, six steals and six turnovers. Assuming he comes off the bench this season, that's the definition of an energy guy. And with Martell Webster out for an extended period of time, Fernandez has the chance to play a lot more, and maybe even start.
He is a do-it-all type of pro that will be a difference-maker on offense and defense.