Basketball is (maybe, possibly) on the horizon. To help reintegrate us to a life of Giannis hammer dunks, James Harden dribbling for 24 seconds, and 76ers fans yelling at you for some reason, we’re rolling out top-five rankings in 20 different categories. Most of the rankings were voted on by The Ringer staff, but each day will feature one writer’s subjective skill-based list.
For this list, players were ranked exclusively by their ability to defend on the ball. Help defense, while nice, is beside the point. There is some positional bias as well; to be an effective on-ball defender, a player must be comfortable defending on the perimeter, where most modern NBA action begins.
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