Who are the 12 best players in the NBA, going into the 2013/14 season. STARTING LINEUP: C: M. Gasol ...I think it's safe to say that he's surpassed D. Howard as the best all-around center in the game. He's not as athletic as Howard, but he's just as big, a hell of a defender, a good, disciplined rebounder, and the owner of a much more versatile offensive game. Also a much, much better teammate. PF: L. James ...I put him at the four. I think he's the most dangerous there. The mismatches he creates from that position are just insane. Big, strong and athletic enough to guard pretty much any four in the league. And it's almost not even fair when any other four needs to guard him. SF: C. Anthony ...This was the one tough call in the starting lineup. Part of me wanted to insert Steph Curry into the lineup (to spread out the floor), with Durant at the 2. But Steph's a defensive problem. Better off the bench. Part of me wanted to go with George here (him and Durant are interchangeable at the 2 or 3). He really impressed me this post-season. But I'd like to see more. Melo's a lot of problems, but he's still super talented, and he carried the Knicks to a respectable season (bad team, really). SG: K. Durant ...Quiet season. But there's still not much debate here. Out of position at the two, but not much. Creates insane matchup problems there. Can guard all 2's. Can do all things any other 2 can do on offense. PG: C. Paul ...He's slipped in some people's minds. But I don't think there's any question here. Parker and Rondo (at 100%) are close, but he's far and away the best play-maker in the game, IMO. BENCH: C: D. Howard ...Love him or hate him, it's hard to argue that he doesn't deserve this spot. Best defensive big man in the league (esp. when healthy/motivated). Good boarder. Great athlete. Bury the weird attitude. PF: K. Love ...Need a true 4 to backup James. Love had a quiet season, but it's just because no one was paying attention / he had no help. Insanely skilled dude with a good attitude. Griffin is really just an ubber athletic dunker, still, IMO. Dirk is very close to Love, but I guess I went with youth. Others (Aldridge, Bosh, etc. are a step behind this group, IMO). SF: P. George ...He's a 2. But big enough to be a 3, for sure. Real lack of stars at the wing positions in the league right now. SG: J. Harden ...He's a great talent. Not much behind him at the two now. I'd rather have him than an aged/beat up DWade or Kobe. PG: S. Curry. ...I like him more as a spot-up off-guard than as a point. But I'm going to take a third point too, so he can have this spot. Spreads the court out better than anyone. Legit superstar. C: A. Drummond ...I put him on this team over some great big men. And it's not because I'm biased. I wouldn't be surprised to see him as the starter of this team at the end of the season. Hibbert's great. Brook Lopez ain't bad. Duncan's Duncan, but getting old. Cousins's talented, but not quite there. A. Davis is intriguing, but not quite there. I take Drummond all day. PG: K. Irving ...I really like Kyrie. Westbrook's got an attitude I don't care for. Rose and Rondo who knows health-wise. Lillard is intriguing, but not quite there. Derron's fallen off. Parker might've been the best point in the league this season, but he's limping. HEAD COACH: G. Poppovich. No question about it, IMO.