The Point Guard is the most important position in the game of basketball. They are always around the ball whether on offense or defense, and have to improve their team by facilitating the ball around the offense. Here we rank the ten best point guards in the NBA. This list is based on stats, percentages, and team performance. James Harden will not be included as Chris Paul will be the Rockets’ point guard this year.
10. Kemba Walker
Walker has only missed four games for the Charlotte Hornets the past two seasons. Those two seasons netted one playoff appearance which ended in a first round loss in seven games to the Miami Heat. Walker is coming off of his first All-Star game this past season. He also participated in the Three Point Contest during that same All-Star weekend. Walker has steadily improved throughout his entire career shown by his career highs last year in field goal percentage, three point percentage, free throw percentage, and points per game. Kemba Walker is only getting better and is ready to play with new Hornet, Dwight Howard.
9. Mike Conley
During the first round of the 2017 NBA Playoffs the Memphis Grizzlies faced the San Antonio Spurs. In that series Mike Conley averaged 24.7 points, 7 assists, 44.7 percent from three, and 48.5 percent from the field over the course of six games. This was the first time that the world understood why a man who has never made an All-Star game has one of the biggest contracts in NBA history last off-season(5 years, $153 million). Conley is also a superior defender, with one of his accomplishments being named to second team All-Defense in 2013. Conley and the Grizzlies put up a good fight against the Spurs, but ultimately lost. However, the world finally took notice of the genius Mike Conley has.
8. Kyle Lowry
Kyle Lowry is the second-most notable free agent point guard this off-season. The first is Steph Curry but he is a virtual lock to re-sign, so it is safe to say that the one who will be most sought after is Lowry.
Lowry has led the Toronto Raptors to four straight years of being a fourth seed or higher, with one Eastern Conference Finals appearance. Lowry is also coming off of a season where he notched career highs in points per game at 22.4, minutes per game at 37.4, and three pointer percentage at 41.2%. He also got 7 assists per game, the second best mark of his career. Although he is 31 years old, Lowry is still a force in the NBA, which will make him the recipient of a max contract in July. The team that will sign him is still TBD.
7. Chris Paul
Chris Paul has recently made news over choosing to opt into the last year of his deal in order to be traded to the Houston Rockets. Paul is 32 years old, so he can still be incredibly effective running an offense. His list of accomplishments is incredible. 9 time All-Star, 7 time All-NBA selection, 9 time All-Defense team selection, and 4 time NBA assists leader. Even with all of these awards not being in the here and now, Paul exudes great leadership ability as well as great shooting and passing abilities. He is coming off of a season in which he averaged 18.1 points per game and 9.2 assists per game. He also shot a career high of 41.1% from behind the arc. Paul is still a great player and is getting ready to truly contend while playing for the Houston Rockets.
6. Damian Lillard
It is nearly impossible to watch any Portland Trailblazers game and not have your jaw drop at the sight of the capabilities of Damian Lillard. Over his five year career, he has missed a total of 14 games, showing his consistence and commitment. In just 5 years, he has been named Rookie of the Year, twice made the All-Star game, and has made his second All-NBA team. His stats are even more impressive. Last year, he averaged 27 points a game with 6 assists. He also shot 37% from deep and 44.4% from the field. He is capable of shooting from Curry range and does it really well. For any opponent of the Trail Blazers, stopping Damian Lillard is the first thing that comes to mind.
Isaiah Thomas is capable of catching fire at any time in any game. His clutch play in the fourth quarter gave him the nickname of “King of the 4th Quarter”. He just finished fifth in the 2017 MVP race while averaging 28.9 points per game and 6 assists per game. He also shot 38% from deep last season while leading the Boston Celtics to the first seed in the Eastern Conference. Thomas’ incredible pick and pop shooting and great shooting stretches landed him at this spot on the list. He is able to frequently demoralize any opponent with hopes of coming back.
4. John Wall
If anyone ever had an argument against the talent of John Wall, tell them to watch the 2017 Eastern Conference Semifinals series against the Boston Celtics. Although the Washington Wizards lost the series Wall’s play was amazing. In the 2017 season he averaged 23.1 points per game and 10.7 assists per game. Yes, these are great numbers but he ramped them up entirely in the 2017 Playoffs. Over the course of 13 games in the playoffs, Wall averaged 27.2 points per game and 10.3 assists per game, all while improving all of his shooting percentages and only missing 9 minutes per game. Pair all of these incredible stats with his age of 26, and he has potential to be one of the best guards planet Earth has ever seen.
3. Kyrie Irving
Irving’s stats are not mind blowing but they can be when it is considered that he shares touches with the best player on Earth, LeBron James. All of these players on this list have the ball in their hand most of the time. This is not true with Irving. In fact, it is pretty amazing that while splitting touches Irving still averaged 25.2 points, 5.8 assists and shot 40% from deep. Along with being the only active player in the NBA to hit a Finals-winning shot, Irving has also appeared in 4 All-Star games and won the 2012 Rookie of the Year. His potential is also immense considering he is the youngest player on this entire list.
2. Steph Curry
Back-to-back MVPs, and one of them is unanimous. In the 2016 season, Curry led the Warriors to a record 73 wins and was considered by everyone to be the best player in the NBA, leading to him being named the only unanimous MVP in NBA history. Even while sharing shots with two other great shooters in Klay Thompson and Kevin Durant, Curry managed to put up 25.3 points per game along with 6.6 assists and shooting 41.1% from deep this past season. These are all really good numbers for an average starting point guard. They are downright amazing when its considered the other players on his team that were also taking a lot of shots.
Russell Westbrook had maybe the singularly greatest regular season ever by a guard. He averaged 31.6 points, 10.7 rebounds, and 10.4 assists a game. Along with those stats its also clear that the Thunder would be a bottom 10 team in the NBA instead of a top 10 team without Westbrook. He missed one game last season, and it was due to rest. He also notched some incredible records this past season such as the first 50 point triple-double in the playoffs and first triple-double while not missing a single shot. Westbrook is just an incredible playmaking point guard so he lands at the top spot on this list. Also, if you need to know more about how reliant the Thunder are on Westbrook’s success, they were 33-9 with a triple-double by Westbrook, and 10-30 when he didn’t have a triple double or didn’t play.