The point guard position is one of the deepest positions in the current NBA. Although a great point guard has not led a team to a title in a long time, they are important because they lead the offense and improve team chemistry.
1. Chris Paul – Los Angeles Clippers
The Clippers’ point guard is regarded as the third best player in the league by most fans and experts because he is able to improve his teammates on offense and defense. Chris Paul recently re-signed with the Clippers to a max deal. Although Chris Paul has never won a major award in the NBA besides the Rookie of the Year, Paul has done something that no player has ever done before: improved the Clippers, made the Clippers respectable, and converted some Laker fans to Clipper fans. Although Paul is not a great scorer, he is great at many other statistical categories. Paul has averaged at least 9 assists and 2 steals per game over the last six years. Chris Paul led the league in assists twice and steals five times during his eight year NBA career. Although Paul does not score many points, he shoots a great percentage from the field. Chris has shot over .475 from the field 5 of the last 6 seasons and over .800 from the free throw line every season of his career. Chris Paul is a future Hall of Famer because he has led two hopeless franchises to playoff wins and success.
2. Russell Westbrook – Oklahoma City Thunder
The Thunder’s point guard is one of the most athletic players in the league, which enables him to be one of the best players in the league. Russell Westbrook has been one of the most durable and accomplished players in the NBA. Westbrook has not missed a single regular season game during his five year career. Although Russell injured himself during the postseason, Westbrook will probably be healthy for the beginning of the season. Russell has improved during every season of his career. Russell Westbrook has transformed from a player who was extremely raw to a player who is extraordinary and one of the best in the league. Russell is a great two way player because he is strong, quick, intelligent, and skilled. Although Westbrook is a high volume shooter who does not shoot a high percentage, he scores a lot of points and sets up his other teammates. Westbrook finished top ten in MVP voting this season because he scored 23.2 points, 7.4 assists, 5.2 rebounds, and 1.8 steals.
3. Tony Parker – San Antonio Spurs
The French point guard has been one of the most underrated players in the NBA over the last few years. Parker was the last point guard and one of two point guards in the last 33 years to win the NBA Finals MVP. Although he has consistently been over looked because he plays with the best power forward of all-time, Parker has finally taken control of the San Antonio Spurs. At the age of 30, Parker had the best season of his career. Parker finished top five in the MVP voting this season because he averaged 20.3 points, 7.6 assists, and 3.0 rebounds. Tony scored 20.3 points while shooting at a very high percentage, 52.2%. Parker has more playoff success than any other point guard in the NBA and the only player on my list to be a major contributor on a team that won the NBA Finals. Although Parker is not strong like other PG, he is extremely quick and has great moves, which enables him to see the floor and score efficiently. Although Parker is not physically dominating like the other point guards, he is intelligent and a savvy veteran.
4. Derrick Rose – Chicago Bulls
The former first overall pick is the first point guard to win the award since Steve Nash. Although Rose is one of the most talented players in the league, he is consistently injured, which drops him in my rankings. When Rose is not injured, he is one of the top two point guards in the league. DROSE has played only 39 games over the last two seasons, which stops him from being a top 10 player in the league. Similar to Russell Westbrook, Derrick is a physically imposing point guard who has a mismatch every night. However, Derrick is not a traditional point guard who dishes and sets up his teammates, but a high volume shooter and does not have a great shooting percentage. Although Derrick only shot under 45% during the last three season, he scored over 20 points per game. During his 2010-2011 MVP season, Rose scored a career high 25 points, 7.7 assists, 4.1 rebounds, and 1.0 steal per game. Although Derrick Rose has been great during the regular season, he has not succeeded in leading the Bulls to the Finals during his four year career. Rose will easily rise to the number one point guard position if he can defeat the Miami Heat and stays healthy during the regular season.
5. Deron Williams – Brooklyn Nets
The Brooklyn Nets star point guard is one of the best point guards in the league because he is strong, fast, and intelligent. Although Williams is not a great shooter, he shoots at a solid percentage and scores a lot of points. During his career, Williams has scored 18 points while shooting over 45% from the field. Although Deron had a horrible first half of the season, Williams looked like the top three point guard he was with Utah Jazz during the second half of the season. Williams averaged 19 points, 8 assists, 3 rebounds, and only 2.8 turnovers per game. Even though Deron had a great season compared to most players, it was considered a down year for him. However, this year the Brooklyn Nets should expect a huge year from Deron because he is surrounded by capable scorers and has had the ability to rest his aching body. During the last two seasons, Williams battled injuries, which compromised his jump shoot and speed. Since he is not recovering from an injury nor playing for the USA in the Olympics, Deron should be feeling 100% for the start of the season. Deron has the ability to return to being a top three point guard in the league because he scores and sets up his teammates while limiting his shots and turnovers.
6. Stephen Curry – Golden State Warriors
The 24 year old point guard is already being considered one of the greatest shooters of all-time. Curry posted a career high in points per game while averaging the second most points among point guards, behind Westbrook. Unlike other point guards, Curry scored 23 points per game while shooting over 45% from the field. Stephen was able to average the most points per game while posting a career high in assists per game. Curry is being considered as one of the greatest shooters of all-time because his shooting percentage and three point percentage was above 45%. Along with his great shooting from the field, Curry shoots 90% from the free throw line. Like other point guards, Curry is consistently hurt, which affects his play. Curry possesses some of the worst ankles in the league. When Curry resolves his ankle problems, he will be one of the greatest shooters and players of his generation. Curry may become the next superstar if he can stay healthy and lead his talented Golden State Warrior team to the NBA Finals or even a championship.
7. Rajon Rondo – Boston Celtics
The talented 26 year old point guard is one of the most skilled and exciting players in the league. Rondo is one of the most exciting players in the league because he is an amazing passer. Along with being an incredible player, Rondo is a leader, who plays the best during big games. Rondo will now have the ability to lead a NBA team since Garnett and Pierce left the team in a trade with the Nets. Although Rondo is not a great scorer, he is the best player in the league at setting up his teammates to score buckets. Although Rondo injured himself half way through the season, Rondo had been durable and a steady producer for the Celtics over the past seven years. During the last three seasons, Rondo averaged more than 11 assists per game while leading the assists for the last two seasons. Rondo is a double double machine, which is strange for a point guard because it is harder to record 10 assists than 10 rebounds. In 2012, Rondo recorded 20 double doubles in just 38 games, which is a higher rate than any other player by a wide margin. Along with recording the highest double double rate, he had the most triple doubles, 5, which was three more than any other player while playing 30 less games.
8. Jrue Holiday – New Orleans Pelicans
The former Philadelphia 76ers point guard has progressively improved during every season of his career. The 22 year old point guard had a break out season for the 76ers, which enabled them to trade him at his highest value. Jrue averaged 17.7 points, 8.0 assists, 4.2 rebounds, and 1.6 steals per game during his fourth season in the Association. Jrue was the lone bright spot on the 76ers team this year, which greatly disappointed their fan base and experts around the league. Since the 76ers were in rebuilding mode, they traded Holiday to the New Orleans Hornets for Nerlens Noel, 6th pick in the draft, and a pick in next year’s draft. New Orleans will be a great fit for Holiday since they have a young nucleus where he can grow and improve as a player. Holiday is a young stud All-Star, who will play in many more All-Star games throughout the rest of his career.
9. Damian Lillard – Portland Trailblazers
The Rookie of the Year had a great first season for the Portland Trailblazers. Lillard, the sixth overall pick, had a surprising break out season for the Trailblazers. Lillard averaged 19 points, 6.5 assists, and 3.1 rebounds per game for the Trailblazers. Damian looks like he will be a great player in this league for a long time. Lillard is a strong, large point guard, who can bully his fellow opponents. Along with great size, Lillard is a great shooter from behind the arc. Last year, Damian shot 37% from behind the arc, which is solid for a rookie transforming from the college game. Lillard’s success will be great for future college players coming from mid major schools such as CJ McCallum.
10. Ty Lawson – Denver Nuggets
The Denver Nugget’s undersized point guard is one of the best young point guards in the NBA. Although Lawson does not dominate his opponents with his size and strength, Lawson has great speed and intelligence, which allows him to succeed in the NBA. Lawson is the leader of the offensive juggernaut, Denver Nuggets. Lawson uses his speed to start fast breaks and out run his opponents. Ty has improved in every important statistical category since entering the NBA four seasons ago. During his best season last year, Lawson averaged 16.7 points 6.9 assists, and 1.5 steals. Next year, Lawson will be forced to take more control of the offense and improve his game because the Nuggets have a rookie head coach and they lost Galo for some of the season and Iguodala to free agency. Ty is a fantastic player and will only improve over the next few years because he is intelligent and controls the floor.
Pics and Stats from ESPN.com