1. Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors
27.3 ppg, 5.2 ast, 5.3 reb, 1.3 stl, 43.7 3-pt%
He may have sacrificed some of the spotlight to play with Kevin Durant, but Curry is still an MVP caliber player. He’s also the greatest shooter in history, capable of catching fire in an instant. There’s also his underrated rebounding, sick handles, and rare off-ball activity, which are just a few more traits that make him one of the thirty best players in NBA history. Frankly, this isn’t even a competition for the top spot, Curry takes it by a mile.
2. Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers
25.8 ppg, 6.9 ast, 4.6 reb, 1.1 stl
Lillard reminded us who he was in the playoffs and we got a good shot at seeing him go head-to-head against Russell Westbrook. Strangely enough, Lillard has only made the All-Star game in four of his seven seasons, being passed over when he was clearly deserving of the honor several times. I don’t anticipate he’ll be missing many All-Star games in the future though. The heart and soul of Portland is clutch and is among only second to Curry among point guards.
3. Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder
22.9 ppg, 10.7 ast, 11.1 reb, 1.9 stl
The triple-double king is taking a lot of heat for his postseason play. Yes, Westbrook is the only player in NBA history to average a triple-double in more than one season, but we’re beginning to see just what his limitations are. Westbrook cannot be the primary scorer on a championship caliber team, and his shot selection and low-efficiency three-point shooting can hurt his own team at points. Truly Westbrook is a first ballot Hall of Famer and one of the most athletic, freakish point guards in history, but he has yet to prove he’s a champion.
4. Kyrie Irving, Boston Celtics
23.8 ppg, 6.9 ast, 5.0 reb, 1.5 stl, 40.1 3-pt%
Irving is also taking heat for his disinterested playoff performances. While that final bad look will surely put some teams off slightly, it’s not nearly enough to actually stop teams from pursuing a player of Irving’s stature. He’s got ridiculous handles, perhaps the best ever, and he’s a clutch shooter. Irving will still have to answer questions about his leadership, or lack thereof, in the future though.
5. Kemba Walker, Charlotte Hornets
25.6 ppg, 5.9 ast, 4.4 reb, 1.2 stl
I’ve repeatedly doubted Walker in the past, but he’s continued to make strides throughout his career. This season, Walker graduated from being just an All-Star to being an All-NBA player. It will be interesting to see what Walker does in free agency since he’s already 29-years-old and has yet to ever be a part of a championship contender. I expect his stat line to look a lot different next season, but Walker has proven he deserves to be acknowledged as one of the game’s best.
6. Ben Simmons, Philadelphia 76ers
16.9 ppg, 7.7 ast, 8.8 reb, 1.4 stl, 56.3 FG%
If Simmons appears to be a bit high, it’s simply because I haven’t fully given up on his ability to develop a jump shot. If by this time next year, he has yet to show any further signs of development, you can expect he’ll take a dive on this list, especially as other young stars continue to grow. Even without a jump shot though, Simmons is still almost good enough for 17-8-8 a night on good efficiency. He’s a decent, versatile defender too, but it’s going to get harder to overlook how lost he can be offensively in the future.
7. D’Angelo Russell, Brooklyn Nets
21.1 ppg, 7.0 ast, 3.9 reb, 1.2 stl
Russell went out and completely changed the narrative of his career this season, taking Brooklyn to the playoffs and making the All-Star game. We got to see the 23-year-old transform into a team leader who showed growth, despite some playoff struggles. Sizable jumps in his scoring, assist totals, and field goal percentage have elevated Russell to a spot among the best point guards in the game.
8. Trae Young, Atlanta Hawks
19.1 ppg, 8.1 ast, 3.7 reb
He looked completely lost for the first half of the season, but Young came out with an incredible late-season push that saved his season averaged. You can bet that if I showed you his numbers from after the All-Star break, they’d be even more impressive than his already great seasonal line. Hopefully, he’ll start hot from the first game next season.
9. Jrue Holiday, New Orleans Pelicans
21.2 ppg, 7.7 ast, 5.0 reb, 1.6 stl
Very few people know how productive Holiday has been with the Pelicans because of all of the Anthony Davis drama and because the team has been so bad. People forget that Holiday was an All-Star back in 2012-13 when he was with the 76ers, but he’s beginning to remind people just how talented he really is. Besides getting it done at the offensive end, Holiday has made an All-Defensive team in each of the last two seasons.
10. De’Aaron Fox, Sacramento Kings
17.3 ppg, 7.3 ast, 3.8 reb, 1.6 stl
After a somewhat disappointing rookie season, Fox showed his true potential this season. His three-point shooting took a massive leap and he made better reads on the defensive side of the ball, which led to some crazy breakaway dunks. We also got to see Fox improve as a facilitator, increasing his assist average from last season by roughly three. With point guards like Fox and Young around, the league looks like it will be in good hands moving forward.
The following five point guards are honorable mentions and they appear in alphabetical order.
Chris Paul, Houston Rockets
15.6 ppg, 8.2 ast, 4.6 reb, 2.0 stl
For me, this was the first season where Paul showed clear signs of regression. While injuries continue to limit his number of appearances, he’s offensive and defensive numbers have slipped a little as well. He’s still an above average defender though, has some of the best handles in the league, and is an excellent floor general. Even if he is no longer physically the player he once was, on the court, his mind is still working at an All-Star level.
Jamal Murray, Denver Nuggets
18.2 ppg, 4.8 ast, 4.2 reb
Murray has quietly been putting in work in Denver and we saw some of that in the playoffs this season. His defensive game still has a long way to go, but his career is moving in the right direction and we should look forward to seeing more of him as Denver continues to grow as a team.
John Wall, Washington Wizards
20.7 ppg, 8.7 ast, 3.6 reb, 1.5 stl
Under ordinary circumstances, Wall would easily be in the top ten, but injuries and erratic play have really thrown his career off as of late. I’m not sure when we will see Wall 100% again, but he’ll have a lot to prove when he gets back.
Kyle Lowry, Toronto Raptors
14.2 ppg, 8.7 ast, 4.8 reb, 1.4 stl
While Lowry made his fifth All-Star game this season, his scoring and field goal percentage have dropped off a little while his assist numbers have gone up. There are games where Lowry turns it on, but he’s beginning to give way to a younger wave of point guards.
Mike Conley, Memphis Grizzlies
21.1 ppg, 6.4 ast, 3.4 reb, 1.3 stl
The perennial All-Star snub has been left off of the main list once again. I’ve got to stop doing this to Conley, I actually feel bad. On a serious note, Conley rebounded nicely after missing most of last season and put up over 1,400 points for the second time in three years. If he played in the East, he’d have several All-Star appearances by now.