For the sixth season in a row, ESPN.com is ranking the top players in the NBA. Who will be the best player this season?
To get the final ranking, we asked our expert panel to vote on pairs of players.
We asked, "Which player will be better in 2016-17?" To decide, voters had to consider both the quality and the quantity of each player's contributions to his team's ability to win games.
We'll roll out the rest of our top 200 players over the next two days. If you want to get involved in the discussion or just follow along, #NBArank is the Twitter hashtag to use. You also can follow along @ESPNNBA and on Facebook.
On to the list ...
7. Chris Paul
Insider profile: Each year, we keep waiting for Paul -- who turned 31 in May -- to show some concession to his age. When he dealt with a groin injury last November and got off to a relatively slow start, that looked as if it might finally be happening. However, Paul turned it on after Blake Griffin was sidelined and submitted another vintage campaign. Alas, the season ended in yet another playoff disappointment, this one due to injury. A broken bone in his right hand sidelined Paul in Game 4 of the Clippers' series against the Portland Trail Blazers. Los Angeles lost the series 4-2 without him. Read more »