The most imperative position on a basketball team in my opinion is the point guard position. More than likely a team comes and goes with its floor general unless your team has Michael Jordan or a dominant center like Shaq. I believe the role of a point guard is to make the proper decisions in order to ensure the team’s offense runs efficiently. These decisions include knowing which players to feed in certain points in the game, taking advantage of what the defense gives you, and scoring in clutch situations. My list of the top point guards in the NBA are:
1. Chris Paul (Hornets)
2. Deron Williams (Jazz)
3. Russell Westbrook (Thunder)
4. Derrick Rose (Bulls)
5. Steve Nash (Suns)
6. Tony Parker
7. Rajon Rondo
Next I will discuss why I put each player at their respective positions.
· Chris Paul- Chris Paul is averaging 2 less points than he typically averages (19.1). He is currently averaging 16.3 points, 3 steals, and 10 assists a game. His reduction in points can be attributed to the offensive game plan of the hornets which centers around a motion offense rather than an isolation style offense. Chris Paul has said himself that he is not being passive, but is taking what the defense gives because he is often double or triple teamed once he get to the lane. The only pg I would consider putting above CP3 is Deron Williams who is a bonafide scored. I give CP3 the edge because he is a better facilitator than Williams which was evident in the last summer Olympics when both played on Team USA. CP3 is the best assist man in the game and can create his own shot when necessary. He is leading an average supporting class to a playoff berth in the deep western conference.
· Deron Williams- He is slightly behind Chris Paul and I wouldn’t be upset if others have him ahead of Paul. Williams is averaging 22.5 points and 9.7 assist on a good Jazz team. He is very difficult to guard and has the ability to will his team to victory by carrying the scoring load at the end of games. He is a beast basically. This was exemplified in their long string of comeback victories at the beginning of the year, which included victories over the Heat and Magic.
· Russell Westbrook- This is a controversial decision because many put Rose ahead of Westbrook. However I place Westbrook ahead of the latter because in my opinion he is the reason the Thunder are winning. In spite of an offensive game plan revolving around Durant, who shoots the ball just about every chance he gets, Westbrook is averaging 23 points, 8.5 assists, 5 rebounds, and 2 steals a game. He averages 2 less minutes a game than Rose who is averaging 1 more point per game. Westbrook leads Rose in just about every other statistical category. Naysayers will argue that Westbrook’s production can be attributed to Durant, but I don’t believe this because Durant gets many plays called for him off of screens and shoots most of the time on those plays. Westbrook may get a few more assists than Rose because of this but I haven’t seen Durant kicking out the ball to Westbrook to help his point total. I also put Westbrook ahead of Rose because he has proven that he is clutch in the playoff series against the Lakers last year.
· Derrick Rose- I have seen Rose a few times this year and he is the best athlete on this list. No person in the league can guard him one on one. He has the ability to dunk on anybody and his jumper had greatly improved. Rose also has the most upside out of all the players on the list. If he learns how to win at the NBA level consistently by making the right decisions he can be the number one guard in the league hands down.
· Steve Nash- The 2-time MVP is averaging 17.6 points and 10 assists while shooting 52 percent from the field. Ummmm yea. He gets the nod over Rondo who can’t hit an 18 foot jumper consistently and is playing with 3 future hall of famers.
· Tony Parker - The Spurs are in contention to win the west this year and Parker is a big part of this averaging 18 points a game and 7 assists while shooting 52 percent. He makes the right decisions in order for his team to win. The Spurs have the best record in the NBA right now so he also gets the nod over Rondo
· Rajon Rondo- Rondo does his job. That’s it. He isn’t a spectacular point guard. Yes he is fast as Jeff Gordon race car and he has great vision. However, you do not have to guard him outside of the lane. Since he is not a legitimate scoring threat outside of the lane I can’t put him at the top of the list. A lot of the time he drives to the basket he passes up any slightly contested shot in an attempt to get an assists. That is why he leads the league in assists averaging 14 a game. He is only averaging 11 points a game. Rajon Rondo is the anti Steve Kerr. Steve Kerr was a non factor in the paint and Rondo is non factor outside of the paint. However he is an elite point guard because he does what it takes for his team to win, and I respect that.