UTAH JAZZ

Five Jazz Players Named To ESPN Top 100 Ranking For 2023-24

Oct 11, 2023, 3:11 PM | Updated: 3:11 pm

Jordan-Clarkson-Utah-Jazz-NBA...

Jordan Clarkson #00 of the Utah Jazz dribbles the ball up the court against the Chicago Bulls during the second half at United Center on January 07, 2023 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY – The Utah Jazz have five of the top 100 players in the league according to ESPN’s NBA Rank survey.

The annual survey asks 150 reporters, editors, producers and analysts to rank players based on their predicted contributions — quality and quantity” strictly for the upcoming 2023-24 season.

Here are the five Jazz players that made the ESPN Top 100 NBA Rank list.

Utah Jazz Players on ESPN NBA Rank Top 100

98. Collin Sexton – Guard

Jazz guard Collin Sexton is the first name found on the list sneaking at number 98, despite an underwhelming, injury-riddled season last year.

Sexton averaged just 14.3 points and 2.9 assists in 2022-23 as he rehabbed from knee surgery the previous season, but said his goal was to play all 82 games for the Jazz this year.

“The vision for Sexton in Utah is him being a sixth man who provides scoring punch, not the go-to guy he was for losing teams in Cleveland before suffering a knee injury,” ESPN’s Tim MacMahon wrote.

90. John Collins – Forward

The Jazz acquired John Collins from the Atlanta Hawks on a sweetheart deal after the worst season of his NBA career.

Collins ‘fit with the starting lineup is still a major question mark heading into the season, but he’s an upgrade from last year’s day-one starter Jarred Vanderbilt.

“Collins, finally traded after years of rumors, should benefit from a change in scenery after posting career lows in field goal percentage (.508) and 3-point percentage (.292) in 2022-23,” Andrew Lopez wrote.

77. Jordan Clarkson – Guard

Jordan Clarkson is coming off a career-best season in Utah where he seamlessly made the jump from former Sixth Man of the Year to a go-to scoring option in the Jazz’s backcourt.

Though Clarkson’s not guaranteed to start this season, he figures to be a key piece in the Jazz offense once again.

“Clarkson, the 2020-21 Sixth Man of the Year, has a claim to be the best bench scorer in NBA history,” MacMahon wrote. “In fact, his career average of 15.2 points per game off the bench is the highest for any player since the ABA-NBA merger, according to ESPN Stats & Information research.”

70. Walker Kessler – Center

Walker Kessler was one of the biggest surprises in the NBA last season as he nearly averaged a double-double in his first year, and was named to the All-Rookie first team.

Kessler is one of the league’s most prolific shot blockers but has to improve his offensive contributions to take the next step.

“Opponents shot only 51.5% inside of six feet against the 7-foot-1 Kessler, according to NBA Advanced Stats,” MacMahon wrote. “Only Defensive Player of the Year Jaren Jackson Jr. was stingier among the 102 players who challenged at least 300 shots within that close range.”

28. Lauri Markkanen – Forward

Lauri Markkanen had a breakout season in Utah after becoming the go-to face of the Jazz.

The Finnish forward earned his first All-Star nod and was named the NBA’s Most Improved Player.

“According to ESPN Stats & Information research, Markkanen became the first 7-footer ever to make at least 200 3s in a season, and he did so while shooting 39.2% from beyond the arc,” MacMahon wrote.

What do you think of the Jazz rankings? Who was too high, and who was too low? Should anyone else have made the top 100 list?

Download the new & improved KSL Sports app from Utah’s sports leader. You can stream live radio, video and stay up to date on all of your favorite teams.

Ben Anderson is the Utah Jazz insider for KSL Sports and the co-host of Jake and Ben from 10-12p with Jake Scott on 97.5 The KSL Sports Zone. Find Ben on Twitter at @BensHoops or on Instagram @BensHoops.

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Five Jazz Players Named To ESPN Top 100 Ranking For 2023-24