The NBA’s in good hands.
For the record, we’re not talking about the leadership of commissioner Adam Silver. Nor any of the fine people working behind the scenes that make the Association operate like a well-oiled machine.
We’re talking about all the young stars balling at an insanely high level on a nightly basis who will eventually take over the mantle as faces of the league from LeBron James, Steph Curry, and Kevin Durant, when those living legends—36, 33, and 33, respectively—decide to call it a career in the not-too-distant future.
Not that we’re trying to push LeBron, Steph, and KD out the door. It’s just that, soon enough, the NBA will belong to the likes of Luka Doncic, Anthony Edwards, Trae Young, Ja Morant, and LaMelo Ball—to highlight but a few of the supremely talented players under the age of 24 currently in the league. Each is already one his way to authoring an impressive career, and a few could even end up being considered all-time greats when they’re done playing, hopefully a decade and a half from now.
But if you were messing around with your pals and had to rank those five, who would you slot first?
Would it be Doncic, the Slovenian wizard whose step-back 3-pointer is one of the most lethal moves in the NBA? Would it be Young, the diminutive point guard whose range is only rivaled by Curry? Or would you give the nod to Morant, the bouncy Grizzlies floor general who wows us with his athleticism all the time? Or would you have the audacity to place Anthony Edwards ahead of them all since he’s the youngest of the bunch?
You kind of can’t go wrong choosing any of them. But because we love ourselves a good NBA hypothetical—if you don’t, are you really a basketball fan?—we took on the arduous task of ranking them, plus 19 others, to come up with our 24 best NBA players under 24. Instead of posting a played-out 25 under 25, or the best 24 and under like we did two years ago, we swerved slightly this year and opted for the best 24 under 24. While nobody on this list is currently above the age of 23, everybody on it can hoop and should have a long and extremely lucrative career ahead of them. Quibble with how we ranked the guys all you want, but there’s no arguing with the names we have on here.
Here are the 24 best NBA players under 24.