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NBA Rank: Michael Carter-Williams is No. 79, Thad Young No. 77

The Sixers young point guard clocks in at No. 79 on ESPN's player ranking list. Too high or too low?

Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

The 76ers will most likely end up at the bottom of league standings again this season, but they have at least one point (guard) of pride. Fresh off a Rookie of the Year win, Michael Carter-Williams clocks in at No. 79 on ESPN's hotly debated #NBARank list.

From an immediate reaction standpoint, the number sounds about right. MCW was impressive in his rookie season, but he certainly has a ways to go before he enters the top echelon of players leaguewide. Upon further scrutiny, he may actually have gotten quite the break from the list-makers.

The young Sixers guard is sandwiched between Arron Afflalo and Ryan Anderson on the list, both of whom are better players with more defined skill sets than we've seen from Carter-Williams. MCW gets the benefit of the doubt due to his youth, and the hope is that he'll improve with more experience and help around him going forward.

Ranking in front of Anderson seems a little silly, though. He is one of the most dangerous offensive weapons in the league, a seven-footer that knocks down threes at prolific volumes. He made 38 percent of his threes on almost seven attempts per game in 2012-13, which puts him in the company of Ray Allen, Steph Curry and other shooting wizards.The only explanation here is that last year's back injury is scaring folks away, but maybe Anderson should be thankful he didn't get the kiss of death. Kobe Bryant tore his Achilles just four days after being named No. 4 last year.

That's without mentioning players in previous rank sets -- looking at you, No. 83 Wesley Matthews -- who are currently more valuable players than Carter-Williams. MCW's profile is tied more to belief of talent than results at this point, and that's fine, but he would probably end up lower on my list. Ultimately these are created to provoke discussion and debate, and shouldn't be taken seriously. Carter-Williams took abuse at times last season for circumstances out of his control, so it's nice to know that most don't hold it against him.

And oh, hey Thad Young! Our old friend Mr. Young is never going to be a star-level player, but I think there's more than a two-slot difference between he and Carter-Williams this season. *Kanye shrug*

At the very least, Sam Hinkie and Co. have to be pleased that they grabbed a gem in the late lotto of a horrid draft. Refinement should see Carter-Williams travel further up this list in the future, along with a flat-topped friend and an oft-tweeting center.

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