Magic Johnson is the best point guard in NBA History. That’s a fact and there isn’t much of a debate about it. Some of the players that follow Magic are Oscar, Isiah, Stockton, Kidd, and Steve Nash. (No, you can’t consider Steph Curry as apart of this list yet) Now, though, can we include Chris Paul in that list?
Some would say that CP3 is already better than some of those players. I, for one, usually don’t like making such claims until a player’s career has come to an end. How can you label someone as one of the greatest of all time if he still has so much time left in his career? For Chris Paul, it’s different though.
Chris Paul is the definition of consistency. With that consistency always comes excellence.
People constantly berate Chris Paul for having failed during the playoffs, but is it really Paul who is failing? His career playoff numbers are utterly similar to his career numbers during the regular season.
Just check them out for yourself:
Career Regular Season Averages: 18.8 PTS, 9.9 AST, 4.4 REB, 2.3 STL, 47.3 FG%, 36.5 3PT%, 86.4 FT%
Career Playoff Averages: 20.9 PTS, 9.5 AST, 4.8 REB, 2.3 STL, 48.3 FG%, 39.0 3PT%, 83.7 FT%
Pretty similar if you ask me. If you’re thinking, “Well, it was the 4th quarter where he struggled”, you’d still be wrong.
In 4th quarters in the playoffs for the past 3 years Chris Paul is averaging 5.9 points and 1.4 assists per game while shooting 51% from the field, 38% from three, and 88% from the line. Oh and he’s averaging only .5 turnovers per 4th quarter.
CP3 does it during the regular season and during playoff time. You can argue that luck is just not on his side or that his supporting cast hasn’t been the best, but the one thing you can’t argue is that Chris Paul doesn’t show up during the playoffs. That’s just not factual.
So, where does he stand among the best point guards of all time? Like I said earlier, I don’t like claiming anything before a player’s career is over, but for Chris, he has to already be up there. Chris Paul still has a lot of time left in his career and might very well end up winning himself a championship before it is all said and done. If that happens, more people will start appreciating his greatness.
One of the lists that Chris Paul is approaching the top of is most 20-point and 10-assist games. Chris Paul, after last night’s game, is now tied for 3rd all time with John Stockton for the most 20-point, 10-assist games. They are both at 184. Isiah Thomas is 2nd with 198 games and of course Magic Johnson is 1st with 246 such games.
Who knows where Chris Paul will land in the top point guard rankings when his career comes to an end? Let’s not worry about that right now and just appreciate the player that Chris Paul is and how great he has been for so long.