of SI.com kicks off
his Top 100 NBA player rankings and includes Portland Trail Blazers guard Brandon Roy at the No. 100 spot as well as center Marcus Camby on the "Just missed the cut" list...
Brandon Roy, G, Portland Trail Blazers: Yup, I’m using the last spot as a giant metaphorical shoulder shrug, because no one could have any reasonable idea where to rank Roy at this point. This seems like a fair compromise for a guy whose 2011-12 season could fall anywhere from "sits out the entire year after feeling knee pain in the first game" to "single-handedly wins a postseason game." In his prime, Roy was one of the league’s 20 best players, a Kobe Bryant-type shooting guard who could create his own shot like a point guard, dish to teammates and finish from anywhere on the court.
Those are championship players capable of embracing the crunch-time burden, and Roy did it as well as anyone before knee problems crippled his game. That game is still in there, somewhere, as Roy showed in Game 4 of last season’s first-round series against Dallas, one of the greatest clutch performances you’ll ever see. But his defense has already suffered severely, and putting him much higher than this feels uncomfortable given all the uncertainty.
Marcus Camby, C, Portland Trail Blazers: Another of the final cuts, as Camby remains one of the league’s best rebounders on both ends of the court. But the 37-year-old’s rotations are getting slower, and big men who can hit from the mid-range give him problems because he does not want to get too far from the rim. He’s also barely an option on offense anymore, having used just 8.5 percent of Portland’s possessions in the playoffs.
-- Ben Golliver | firstname.lastname@example.org | Twitter