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20. Bradley Beal and Davis Bertans (Washington Wizards)
Offensively, Bradley Beal and Davis Bertans make up one of the game’s very best duos. When both were on the floor, the Washington Wizards scored a whopping 121.7 points per 100 possessions (99th percentile).
If John Wall can come back to even 85 to 90 percent of his previous self, adding him to this sweet-shooting duo makes for a fascinating trio.
19. Jonas Valanciunas and Ja Morant (Memphis Grizzlies)
There were a few options here. Either Jaren Jackson Jr. or Brandon Clarke would’ve made sense with either of those named above.
Ja Morant is clearly the face of the team, though. And the advanced numbers love Jonas Valanciunas more than anyone else on the roster. This thunder-and-lightning duo should have the Memphis Grizzlies in contention for the playoffs again next season, especially as JJJ and Clarke continue to develop.
18. Spencer Dinwiddie and Jarrett Allen (Brooklyn Nets)
Despite only appearing in 20 games, there’s an argument to include Kyrie Irving here. But Spencer Dinwiddie and Jarrett Allen were both leaders of a Brooklyn Nets squad that made the postseason in 2019. They’re more than worthy replacements.
This season, they make up the Nets’ top two in wins over replacement player.
17. Jrue Holiday and Brandon Ingram (New Orleans Pelicans)
Had the season gone on much longer, it would’ve been difficult to keep Zion Williamson out of this space. He and Brandon Ingram are tied for the New Orleans Pelicans’ team lead in box plus/minus (with Jrue Holiday barely behind those two).
Over the next couple of seasons, this may wind up being one of the game’s best Big Threes. Ingram is 22, while Zion is 19. The future is bright.
16. Domantas Sabonis and Malcolm Brogdon (Indiana Pacers)
With Victor Oladipo out for most of the Indiana Pacers’ season with an injury, Domantas Sabonis emerged as an All-Star point center in the mold of his father and Hall of Famer, Arvydas.
Malcolm Brogdon, meanwhile, dealt with injuries and saw his efficiency plummet in his first year with the Pacers. Still, career highs in points and assists per game are encouraging signs for a player who’ll face less intense defensive schemes if Oladipo is back in 2020-21.
15. Trae Young and John Collins (Atlanta Hawks)
If the rest of the Atlanta Hawks’ roster closes the gap on Trae Young and John Collins, the team could compete for a spot in the playoffs as early as next season.
Young is a bona fide No. 1 scorer. And Collins is a walking 20 and 10. This duo has a chance to be the new-age Steve Nash and Amar’e Stoudemire.
14. Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid (Philadelphia 76ers)
For those who may have expected to see Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid in the top 10, there are a few issues here. First, both players dealt with injuries this season. Embiid alone missed 21 games.
The bigger problem, though, was that the duo’s net rating hit a new low. The Philadelphia 76ers were still a plus with both on the floor, but not by much.
That may have a lot to do with how much these two played with Al Horford (the net rating is far better when both are on without Horford), but that won’t be talked about as much as the fit between Simmons and Embiid.
13. Devin Booker and Ricky Rubio (Phoenix Suns)
If Deandre Ayton is able to stay on the floor, he may replace Ricky Rubio as early as next season. Right now, the Phoenix Suns’ starting backcourt draws the analysis.
The team was cruising to another lottery pick, but it was anything but a pushover when Booker and Rubio were on the floor. When those two were together, the Suns were plus-6.5 points per 100 possessions (86th percentile).
12. Kyle Lowry and Pascal Siakam (Toronto Raptors)
Pascal Siakam and Kyle Lowry both missed plenty of time with injuries, and the advanced numbers have tailed off a bit for Siakam over recent weeks.
But in games in which both appeared, the Toronto Raptors had a ridiculous .732 winning percentage. That was the fourth-best mark in the exercise.
11. Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell (Utah Jazz)
Rudy Gobert remains a dominant defensive force, while Donovan Mitchell is becoming one of the game’s most exciting young volume scorers.
If Mitchell can improve his efficiency, playmaking and defense a bit, this duo will likely climb over the next couple of years.