NBA noise: top five PGs
A couple of friends and I got into a semi-heated argument before heading to the Celtics game last Friday night. There is an abundance of great, true point guards in the league, yet none of us could agree on who is the best. What qualities should count for more when evaluating today’s point guards? Would you rather have Steve Nash, who can rain threes on any given day, or Rajon Rondo, who is guaranteed to out-quick most other guards?
Five guys, five different opinions. Here, I’ll outline the arguments for each of the top five before revealing my definitive guide to the NBA’s best point guards.
Friend 1: Rajon Rondo, Boston Celtics. A true homer’s pick. Rondo leads the NBA in assists with 14.8 per game (the next closest mark is 10.7). He’s also an all-NBA defender, averaging two steals per game.
Friend 2: Chris Paul, New Orleans Hornets. Shades of Isiah Thomas. Paul is the best dribbler in the league and can get around any defender he wants. Like Rondo, Paul consistently is among the league-leaders in steals. He’s currently third in the league in assists with 10.2 per game.
Friend 3: Derrick Rose, Chicago Bulls. The most athletic point guard in the league, far and away. After watching Rose in person on Friday night, one thing is clear—he can blow by anybody, not just with his dribbling ability like Paul, but with pure speed and quickness. Rose can get any shot he wants on the court—making the shot is a different matter.
Friend 4: Steve Nash, Phoenix Suns. This outdated argument was made using one claim and one claim only. Friend 4 once scored 92 points with Nash in a video game. That is all.
Me: Deron Williams, Utah Jazz. Throwing away the fact that the Jazz are one of my favorite non-Boston teams, I love Williams’ size and strength. I defy you to find a weakness in his game. Quickness, check. Handles, check. Shooting, check. Deron Williams is a beast. To my rankings.
5. Derrick Rose. Rose is one of the most exciting players in the game, and that’s great. But he’s not for me. He is still young, so there’s plenty of room for improvement. After seeing him in person, what worries me is his decision making and shooting. Rose seems streaky in both regards. In any given game, he could have 30 points, 10 assists and two turnovers, or 10 points, five assists and nine turnovers. He’s the only player on this list who can’t claim consistency as a trait (yet).
4. Steve Nash. While the video game argument may not be valid, Nash has been the most consistent point guard of the past decade. Count on Nash to get you 20 points and 12 assists per game while shooting 50 percent from the field. He’s by far the best three-point shooter on the list.â€ˆHe also has a bro-flow.
3. Chris Paul. He’s a popular pick because of the gaudy numbers he puts up game after game. What I don’t like (hate even) is his demeanor on the court. When Paul makes a mistake, it’s never his fault. Blame Stojakovic or Okafor, but not Chris Paul. Once his trade demands are met, he won’t be able to blame his subpar teammates. Iâ€ˆcan’t wait.
2. Rajon Rondo. I put him as high as I could for 80 percent of the Colby population, but putting him in the top spot would mean admitting I was wrong (no chance). I love Rondo. He’s my favorite player in the NBA, but that doesn’t make him the best. If basketball was all about passing and making defenders look silly, Rondo would be unstoppable. Unfortunately, even point guards have to shoot once in a while, and penetrating point guards often find themselves at the foul line. Rondo, in a word, sucks at both of these aspects of the game.
1. Deron Williams. My original pick. Size, strength, shooting and speed. What more do you need? Also, one of the best beards in the game. Top notch.
Do you agree? Disagree? Care to make a rebuttal? E-mail me at email@example.com with thoughts.