The net result: Our NBA Finals ranking

Photo courtesy of USA Today

It’s NBA Finals time and summer is upon us! This event could be a classic because with Kevin Durant injured, the Raptors look to have a true chance at winning their first title.

That being the case, examines the top five players this year.

1. Kawhi Leonard

The Claw has been the best player this postseason. KD is out for what seems like most of the season and Leonard plays defense on the opposite team’s best wing.

He’ll be matched up against Klay Thompson or Andre Iguodala and be more of a rover on the defensive end. Leonard scores so easily, it’ll be hard to stop him. He has strength, length and skill above all players not named Kevin Durant.

2. Steph Curry

Curry has been unstoppable since KD’s injury. He’s averaged 35.8 points, 6.6 assists and 7.6 rebounds. Per usual, his jumper is falling as he’s shooting 46.5 percent from the field.

Durant is expected to miss at least game one and it’ll be up to Curry to carry most of the load this finals. Even so, the Warriors are a great team with or without KD. Curry can catch fire at the blink of the eye.

3. Klay Thompson

Speaking of catching fire, Thompson shines when the lights are brightest. He hit a number of big shots to swing the momentum during the Warriors and Blazers series.

The Warriors are almost impossible to beat if Thompson is locked in. The key in this match-up is to predominantly pit Klay against Leonard. If he has to use his energy on the defensive end, it’ll impact his offense and give the Raptors hope.

4. Draymond Green

Mr. Do Everything, Green took his play to another level during the Western Conference. The old Draymond returned. He can attack the rim, play all five and defend all five positions. He can run the break, too.

Whatever you need, Green gets it done on the basketball court. The three-time All-Star unleashed on the Blazers. He’s always been able to create good shots for his teammates, who have been suppressed by KD.

5. Kyle Lowery

Finally, there’s the savvy veteran point guard who’s has had an up-and-down career in Toronto. Lowry finally broke through with the playoff run of an All-Star in the Eastern Conference finals, averaging 19.1 points per game while shooting 50.7 percent.

In fact, Lowry might be the most important player for the Raptors. His size and defensive prowess and ability to be physical with Steph Curry on defense will be Key. While he isn’t the best offensive scorer, he’ll make Curry work on the other end of the floor.

Lowery actually might be the key player in the entire series. If Lowery has a great finals, it might just be enough to put the Raptors over the top with KD.

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