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Top Five: NBA players in new places

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Cheers and Jeers,Sports,NBA,Jeffrey Tomik

With NBA training camps starting next week, who are the top five faces in new places:

5. Steve Nash, Lakers » The two-time MVP gives the Lakers a point guard who can take control of the offense -- something they haven't had since Magic Johnson. Nash was second in the NBA in assists per game (10.7) last year. But how much longer can a 38-year-old with back problems be able to play at such a high level?

4. Andre Iguodala, Nuggets » Following in the footsteps of the 76ers' first AI (Allen Iverson), Iguodala was traded to Denver. The versatile forward isn't an elite scorer, but he does everything else at a high level. He's one of the best passing forwards, rebounds his position well and was named to the all-defensive team in 2010-11.

3. Joe Johnson, Nets » The shooting guard may not deserve to be one of the highest-paid players in the league, but he's averaged more than 18 points a game for seven straight seasons. Joining Deron Williams in Brooklyn, Johnson won't be asked to be the leader and top option he was in Atlanta.

2. Andrew Bynum, 76ers » The 7-footer answered a lot of questions with a breakout 2011-12 season. He was able to stay healthy, missing only two games after opening the season with a four-game suspension, and averaged career highs in minutes (35.2), points (18.7) and rebounds (11.8). He was named the second-team All-NBA center behind ...

1. Dwight Howard, Lakers » Los Angeles wasn't happy with having the second-best center in the league, so they traded for the top big man. Howard is a three-time defensive player of the year and has led the league in rebounds per game in four of the last five seasons. The only concern? The 26-year-old had back surgery in April.

- Jeffrey Tomik

jtomik@washingtonexaminer.com

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