Some of the best players to ever play basketball have played the small forward position. From Elgin Baylor to today, the game has been run by the small forwards. Today, this is who I believe are the five best shooting guards in the league.
5. Paul Pierce- The former Jayhawk is now in his fourteenth season, and his age is beginning to show. At 35, some of Pierce’s talents and abilities are beginning to fade. He is playing less minutes, but his stats remain average for his career. Pierce averages 18.6 points per game, as well as 6.1 rebounds. Unfortunately, most of his numbers are going down and the simple reason why is because he is just not the same player he used to be. Because of Rajon Rondo’s injury, Paul Pierce has to create shots for himself. It is now Pierce’s duty to try and push the Boston Celtics into the playoffs.
4. Luol Deng- He has certainly stepped up his game for the Chicago Bulls due to the absence of Derrick Rose. In his ninth season, Deng is averaging 17.3 points per game, 6.7 rebounds and a career high 3.1 assists. He can hit clutch three point shots and knock down his free throws. With the talent Deng has, I would like to see him attack the paint more and take more shots. However, with the return of Derrick Rose in less than a month, Luol Deng’s opportunity to shine may not come. However, he is still an elite player and his team only gets better with Derrick Rose on his way back.
3. Carmelo Anthony- He is having an MVP season, recording 28.5 points per game, 6.2 rebounds and 2.8 assists. At 6’8”, Melo can beat a player on the outside with his jump shot, or down low with his size. He is hitting 44.7% of his attempted shots this season, 41% on three point attempts. Plus, Anthony is only turning the ball over 2.6 times per game, which is very impressive for someone who has the ball in his hands a majority of the time. Carmelo Anthony’s game has matured greatly, as he has put the New York Knicks in second place in the Eastern Conference.
2. Kevin Durant- The 24 year old is certainly making his case to be the best player in the NBA. Durant, who stands at a lanky 6’10”, has one of the toughest jump shots to defend. His size gives them ability to shoot over almost any defender. KD is knocking down a career high 51.6% of his shots this year. Like the past three seasons, Durant is leading the league in scoring once again, averaging. 29.6 points a game. Along with scoring, he is averaging 7.4 rebounds a game and a career high 4.4 assists. Durant is in charge of the Oklahoma City Thunder, as they look to get back to the NBA Finals.
1. LeBron James- This should not come as too much of a surprise to anyone. As arguably the most physically-gifted athlete to ever play basketball, James continues to evolve his game. He is shooting an average of 55% from the field, 40.4% from three point range, and grabbing 8.3 rebounds, all career highs. LeBron is also scoring an average of 26.6 points per game and dishing 7 assists per game. With his 6’8”, 250 pound frame of what is sheer muscle, LeBron James has the ability to play any position. For now, James has established himself as the most preeminent player in the game of basketball.
Now, I am on to the big men down low in the paint. Up next, I will rank the top five power forwards in the NBA.