Leading up to the 2012 draft, everyone knew Anthony Davis was the prize of the class, thanks to his terrific freshman season at Kentucky. This was the classic "one-man draft." But two things have since happened that no one expected: (1) Davis has already become a superstar and (2) the class actually has three great players, possibly four.
With several potential All-Stars and a depth of starting-level talent overall, the class of 2012 is shaping up to be a pleasant surprise that looks even better when compared to this year's rookie crop.
Who are the top second-year players in the NBA today? Let's take a look. And remember, this ranking is based on where these guys are today, not where they were yesterday or where they will end up one day.
His elite-level talent as a transition finisher, his production rolling to the rim off ball screens, and his triple-threat impact on defense (blocks, steals and covering space) will lift him into All-NBA consideration, potentially as a first-team forward.
He'd be even more effective if his teammates looked for him more often, which they will learn to do with more film study and coaching. This will result in better production for Drummond and the Pistons as the season unfolds.
Drummond is not the full-court threat Davis is, but he is one of the top rebounding centers in the game today and will compete for All-NBA honors at center for the next decade.
Lillard will never be the athlete that guys like John Wall or Russell Westbrook are, but it's just as unlikely that those players will ever match Lillard's shooting skill. He is good enough to be the starting point guard on a title team while being one of its top-three players.