The NBA is a point guard driven league. Point guard talent is among the deepest positions in the league. I am ranking each point guard based on their performance over the 2015-2016 NBA season. Lets see where they rank.
10.) Reggie Jackson, Detroit Pistons
Reggie Jackson proved he was worth the $80 million contract he signed last offseason. He fit in with Stan Van Gundy. Van Gundy’s coaching revolves around a big and three-point shots. Jackson fed the ball to Andre Drummond and shot a career high 35.3% from behind the three-point line. Now we know why he was upset before his departure from Oklahoma City.
9.) Kyrie Irving, Cleveland Cavaliers
Kyrie Irving is a better point guard then a few listed below, but he missed every game until Dec. 20. Irving played in 53 games, the lowest of any point guard on my list. He averaged career lows in rebounds, assists and three point shooting. His 19.6 points per game was his lowest since his rookie year. Irving is still a star, he just didn’t have his best season.
8.) Kemba Walker, Charlotte Hornets
Kemba Walker made the leap from average to star point guard. All three of his shooting percentages, points and rebounds per game were career highs. He brought the Charlotte Hornets to the playoffs for the second time in his career. Behind C.J. McCollum, Walker placed second in Most Improved Player in the NBA. Walker is no longer underrated.
7.) Isaiah Thomas, Boston Celtics
Isaiah Thomas turned into a star during the 2015-2016 regular season. He averaged 22.2 points per game over all 82 games. Stephen Curry, Damian Lillard and Russell Westbrook were the only point guards to average more points per game than Thomas. Thomas also made his first All-Star appearance in 2016. Celtics stars get smaller as the years go on.
6.) John Wall, Washington Wizards
John Wall averaged career highs in points, rebounds and assists per game in 2015-2016. His three point shooting percentage tied a career high, but 115 three pointers made is his career high. Wall turned Marcin Gortat into an above-average center, but the rest of his team didn’t live up to expectation. He is the only point guard on my list to not make the playoffs. Scott Brooks should change that.
5.) Kyle Lowry, Toronto Raptors
Kyle Lowry is the best point guard in the Eastern Conference and earned a starting job on the East All-Star team. 2015-2016 was Lowry’s first season he eclipsed the 20 points per game mark. He improved his defense with 2.1 steals and 0.4 blocks per game. Lowry led the Raptors to a franchise best record. His defensive improvement should scare the NBA.
4.) Chris Paul, Los Angeles Clippers
Veteran Chris Paul had another stellar year for the Los Angeles Clippers. He averaged 19.5 points and 10 assists per game. Those are roughly the same totals he averaged the two previous seasons. Paul has a high basketball IQ and is a nightmare for opposing point guards. His leadership is key as the Clippers went 3-5 without him in the lineup. I believe Paul played his last season in Los Angeles.
3.) Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers
Can Damian Lillard lead a team on his own? Yes. He silenced the critics in 2015-2016. Lillard averaged a career high 25.1 points per game. That ranked second among point guards and sixth best in the NBA. Other career highs include assists, blocks and turnovers. He led the Portland Trail Blazers to the 5th seed in the Western Conference. The fact that Lillard wasn’t an All-Star is insane. He said it in his commercial, “Thank you for the motivation.”
2.) Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder
The term triple-double sums up Russell Westbrook’s season. Westbrook totaled 18 triple-doubles over 2015-2016. That was enough to pass Magic Johnson for the most triple-doubles in a single season. He even placed second in the NBA with 54 double-doubles. His only flaw is his point guard leading 4.3 turnovers per game. No matter what Mark Cuban thinks, Westbrook is a superstar.
1.) Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors
This is a surprise to no one. Stephen Curry led the NBA with 30.1 points per game drilling 402 three-point shots shooting 45.4% from three. The previous record for three pointers made was 287. That record was set and broken by Curry. Curry also made a career high 50.4% from the field. He is the clear-cut favorite for the 2016 NBA MVP.