PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Since 2012, we’ve been saying Philly sports is going to get better soon.
But now I think we’re seriously on the precipice of something special now. There is an abundance of young talent in Philly.
Here are the top 10 athletes in Philadelphia pro sports, 25-years-old or younger.
10. Dario Saric, 23
Dario Saric is only 23-years-old. He averaged 12.8 points, 6.3 rebounds, 2.2 assists in 26.3 minutes per game as a rookie, reaching the NBA all-rookie first team. Saric shot 31.1-percent from three, not a terrific clip by any means, but for a rookie coming overseas it’s an underrated number.
Saric is 10th on this list because with other great players on his own team (coming later on this list), he doesn’t project to be a star necessarily. Plus, his name is constantly popping up in trade rumors, so you never know. But he’s a fan favorite in Philadelphia already.
9. Scott Kingery, 23
Kingery is the Phillies’ prospect flavor of the month. The 23-year-old second baseman was recently called up to Triple-A Lehigh Valley. He’s 4-13 with two homers and five RBI’s in three games with the IronPigs.
8. Derek Barnett, 21
Barnett was the Eagles’ first-round pick this year and hopes to give opposing offensive lines problems for years to come. The 6’3″, 250-pound defensive end broke Reggie White’s sack record at Tennessee, racking up 33 in three seasons.
7. Ivan Provorov, 20
Provorov was the Flyers’ No. 7 overall pick in 2015 and put together a relatively impressive rookie campaign last season, playing in all 82 games.
6. Jordan Hicks, 25
Hicks is entering his third season with the Eagles, poised to become the leader of one of the league’s top defensive fronts. Hicks has recorded seven interceptions in his first 24 NFL games and is regarded as one of the best cover linebackers in the NFL. However, injury concerns keep him outside of the top five on this list.
5. Nolan Patrick, 18
The sky’s the limit for Patrick, the Flyers’ second overall pick this year. The 6’2″, 200-pound power center was regarded by many as the best player in this year’s NHL draft.
4. Carson Wentz, 24
The Eagles’ future hinges on Wentz, who is already 24 with veteran-like maturity. He checks all the boxes, there’s no doubt about that. Wentz just looks like a franchise quarterback.
However, there is some uncertainty in terms of just how good he’ll be, as Wentz struggled toward the end of last season.
3. Joel Embiid, 23
Embiid would be first on this list, but injury risk keeps him outside of the top-two. A 7’2″ center who can shoot three’s, make foul shots, and attack anyone or anything at anytime on Twitter is legendary.
Please stay healthy, Joel. Please.
2. Markelle Fultz, 19
Fultz was the Sixers’ No. 1 overall pick in this year’s draft and clearly has the best offensive skills in the draft. Fultz will be ready to score immediately this season, a perfect complement to Ben Simmons — the No. 1 person on this list.
1. Ben Simmons, 20
I’ve been saying it since day one: I think Ben Simmons is underrated, especially in Philadelphia. I don’t think we’re quite grasping how good this guy is going to be. Yes, he’s not a great outside shooter. But other than that? He’s elite at everything. Size, speed, in transition, ball handling, seeing the floor, and passing. He projects to be an above-average defender as well.
And what if he develops just an average three-point shot? Game over.