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Top 5 Shooting Guards Of The Season

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Basketball fans, we are back with another opinionated piece on our top 5 shooting guards of the season. As always, thanks for reading and give us a follow on Twitter!

Mohamed Bah- @RAGEMO23

  1. Demar DeRozan, Toronto Raptors

What a year it has been for Demar DeRozan. Not only is he averaging career highs in points (27) and rebounds (5) but he had one of the hottest starts to the season I could remember. In his first nine games, he scored 30+ in eight games. For the span, he also averaged 34 points per game on 53 percent shooting from the field. DeRozan has also been leading the Raptors to significant success as well.

2. C.J. McCollum, Portland Trail Blazers

One of the most underrated guards in the league. His ability to isolate anyone in the league and score in beyond mind boggling. CJ is quite possibly the best isolation guard there is in the mid range

3. Jimmy Butler, Chicago Bulls

Jimmy has single handily kept the Chicago Bulls alive in a late playoff push all without the assistance of free agent signee Dwyane Wade. For the season, Butler is averaging 23 points per game, which is a career high for him and also shooting 45 percent from the field.

4. Dion Waiters, Miami Heat

I bet you weren’t expecting this one. But due to the success that this Heat team has had, it was an easy pick for me. I loved how he has taken a leadership role in this franchise and has put the team on his back. The Heat might even make the playoffs and Erik Spoelstra may end up winning coach of the year.

5. Devin Booker, Phoenix Suns

Ahhhh yes. Mr 70. Speaking of 70, can you believe that this kid is just 20 years old? Amazing. But him scoring 70 isn’t the reason why I had him at 5, it’s due to the fact that this season he has been a flat out stud. Career highs in scoring, assists, and even rebounds. Booker has also improved well on his defense as well.

 

 

Brandon Wentz@Thebighonch

Now for the Top 5 shooting guards, I took a bit of a different approach than I did for point guards in that I have a couple guys on my list who have had injury-shortened seasons. For my Top 5 point guards, I took injuries into account in a big way.

Injuries and missed games caused me to rule Chris Paul and Kyle Lowry out of the top five, not saying that they would have made it in any way. The point guard position is incredibly deep in today’s league; the shooting guard position, well, not so much.

Because of how many less top-tier shooting guards there are, I decided to put players who’ve dealt with both major and minor injuries on my list for their impact on their teams.

5. Khris Middleton, Milwaukee Bucks

Now yes, I know he’s only played in 26 games for the Bucks this season; and yes, I know he’s only started in 20. Look at Milwaukee’s record over their last 26 games: 18-8. Ten games over .500 since Middleton returned.

He may not be scoring at as high a volume as other shooting guards in the league, like Klay Thompson, but he contributes more to other statistical categories than Thompson. He’s averaging, on the whole, this season, 15.1 points, 4.1 rebounds, 3.3 assists, and 1.4 steals during 30.2 minutes per game. Last season Middleton broke out for a career-high 18.2 points, 4.2 assists, and 1.7 steals per game while playing 36 minutes on a nightly basis. Due to his hamstring injury, he’s missed a huge chunk of time and so Milwaukee has been cautious about his playing time.

What stands out most about Middleton to me is his potential. He’s only 25, in his 5th season, and he means a lot to the team he’s on – which is a talented young group. In years to come, we’re going to be seeing a lot more of this guy.

4. C. J. McCollum, Portland Trail Blazers

The young Blazer came in last season and surprised the hell out of NBA fans, earning himself last year’s Most Improved Player award and averaging about 20 points, 4 assists, 3 rebounds, and a steal per contest – all massive leaps from the year before when he averaged just 6.8 points per game.

This year has been similar to last year, his scoring is up to 23.2 points per game and he’s shooting a career-high 48.5% from the field.

3. Avery Bradley, Boston Celtics

Bradley is well-deserving of a spot on this list and would be my choice for 2nd best if he’d been healthier this year. He’s an A-list defender, an increasingly volatile scorer, and now a surprising rebound contributor from the shooting guard position. This season he’s averaging career-bests in scoring (16.6), rebounds (6.2), and assists (3.5) per game.

All of these numbers as his Celtics are in a neck-and-neck race for the number one seed in the East.

2. Bradley Beal, Washington Wizards

John Wall’s backcourt mate has had a great year much like Wall. The two of them have done so much for that Wizards team this season and will look to do more come the postseason.

Beal is averaging a career-high 23 points per game with an eFG% of 56.5%. He’s also getting a hair more than one steal per game and three and three assists and rebounds per night. Yes, his numbers are very similar to McCollum’s; but his team is looking at home court in the first round of the playoffs – weaker conference or not, that’s impressive.

1. DeMar DeRozan, Toronto Raptors

No one is holding down the 6 more DeMar DeRozan, sorry Drake. What a year he’s having. 27.3 points, 3.9 assists, 5.3 rebounds, and 1.1 steals per game. He’s been asked to do a lot lately with Kyle Lowry’s injury and rising to the occasion.

Over the last 15 days, DeRozan is scoring 31 points, dishing 5.4 assists, grabbing 4.6 rebounds, and getting one steal per game. And over the Raptors’ last 10 games their record is 8-2. There’s no doubt in my mind DeRozan is the best shooting guard in the league this year and right now in general.

 

 

We are continuing our Top 5 players at each position. In case you missed it, yesterday the Top 5 Point Guards List was released, it can be seen here. Today, we are listing the Top 5 Shooting Guards.

Brian Samspon (@BRIANBALL0)

The shooting guard position seems a little down to me. It isn’t filled with the typical superstars like we’ve seen in the past. I attribute this mostly to the evolving NBA game where players can be categorized into multiple positions.

5. Lou Williams, Houston Rockets

This will come as a big surprise to you but Lou Williams is deserving to be on this list. Even though he is only averaging 24 minutes per game his per 36 numbers are right on par with the rest of this group, proving that he belong in this conversation. Williams is averaging 26.2 points per 36 minutes, ranking third in this top 5 list. He also has a PER of 22.1 is also higher than Beals. If it wasn’t for Williams liability on defense he might be higher on this list.

4. Bradley Beal, Washington Wizards

Beal has finally been able to stay healthy throughout the year and it has paid major dividends for the Wizards. They are in fourth place in the Eastern Conference and sit only one game behind the Raptors for third. While Beal’s PER of 20 is last in this group, he has an Offensive Rating of 117 which ranks just below James Harden. Beal may be the best shooter of this bunch as he is knocking down 40.7 percent of his three-point attempts this season. His true shooting percentage of 60.3 also ranks second on this list.

3. DeMar DeRozan, Toronto Raptors.

DeRozan has been carrying Toronto since Lowry went down with an injury. The Raptors have hardly missed a beat without their All-Star point guard and sit in third place in the Eastern Conference. DeRozan has a PER of 24.1, ranking third on this list. DeRozan is known best as a mid-range jumper and he has taken that game to new heights this season. All year long fans and experts have expected DeRozan’s shooting percentage to come down but he continues to have a 55.2 percent true shooting percentage, the best since his rookie year in the NBA.

2. Jimmy Butler, Chicago Bulls.

Butler is quietly having a very good season for Chicago, who have strung together a couple of recent victories. He actually has a higher Offensive Rating than Harden and continues to be a lockdown defender. Butler made a name for himself as a great defensive player but has continued to develop his offensive game as well. His PER of 25.2 ranks second of the players on this list.

1. James Harden, Houston Rockets.

There are some questions about whether or not Harden is a point guard or a shooting guard. I know he was listed a couple times yesterday as a point guard. For the sake of inconsistency, I ranked him as the best shooting guard in the NBA. Harden may very well be the front-runner for MVP this season after narrowly missing out two years ago. He has paced the Rockets to the third-best record in the NBA this season. Harden has taken his playmaking ability to another level and is averaging 11.2 assists per game, tops in the NBA. His PER of 27.3 is also the highest in this group of shooting guards. The Rockets aren’t a team filled with superstar players so their success this season can be squarely attributed to Harden’s amazing year.

Kirshner Saintil (@Kirsh_TLFO)
5. Jimmy Butler

Jimmy Butler is having a very good season although the Bulls record does not reflect it. He has gone up in nearly every major category and is still the focal point of the offense. Butler has stepped up his performance after the team lost Dwyane Wade for the remainder of the season to a fractured elbow, he went from averaging 23 points and 5 assists while the team sat in 10th place with 27 points, 8 assists, and the current 7th seed.

4. DeMar DeRozan

DeRozan has been impressive this season. He has held down the fort since Kyle Lowry went down earlier this season. He is averaging 27 points, 5 rebounds and 4 assists per game. DeRozan has been able to keep the Raptors in the top tier of the Eastern Conference this season.

3, Bradley Beal

Bradley Beal has stepped it up in a major way this season. There were doubts about him being worth the Max contract that was signed this past summer, but now that he has been able to remain healthy, he has shown just how valuable he is. Beal has been a key piece of the Wizards success this season averaging 23 points, 3 assists, and 3 rebounds while showing the world that he is a great compliment to John Wall.

2. Klay Thompson

The man with the smoothest shooting form in the league! It was expected that Klay’s game would hurt the most with the addition of Kevin Durant but he has been able to keep his consistency while knocking down 3’s. Klay has been a great compliment to both Kevin Durant and now his fellow splash brother Steph Curry in Durant’s absence and will look to continue his play in the postseason

1. Giannis Antetokounmpo

The Greek Freak. The man who can play 1-5 and play it well. Giannis has taken a big leap forward this season. The team seems to have found comfort in playing him at the two guard for a good part of this season which is why I have him here instead of at Point or the Small Forward. He is definitely in the running for Most Improved Player. Giannis has gone up in every statistical category this season and it appears that the sky is the limit for the versatile 22-year-old.

 

Cale Michael@XJustified

Shooting guard is probably the weakest position in the league when it comes to great players. It isn’t hard to name the top names for the position, but the difficulty comes from ranking those that make the cut.

Before I get to the top five, I want to give an honorable mention to Avery Bradley on the Boston Celtics. He would have made the list if his season wasn’t riddled with injuries.

5. C.J. McCollum, Portland Trail Blazers
McCollum was the league’s most improved player last season and hasn’t stopped producing at that level since. He is a major factor in why Portland is controlling their playoff fate in the Western Conference.

He is averaging a career high in points with 23.2 per game and with Nurkic going down, his load will be even higher over the next few weeks. His defense is still a liability, but it has improved since last season.

4. DeMar DeRozan, Toronto Raptors
This isn’t a knock in DeRozen as much as it is the fault of his team. The Raptors have added key pieces in Serge Ibaka and P.J. Tucker to their roster and yet their play depends so heavily on injured point guard Kyle Lowry.

The team up north has fallen off in the Eastern Conference standings from the last season, but they still look poised for a nice run if Lowry can come back healthy. This stretch of the season with DeRozen as the primary option and the second option being either Ibaka or Jonas Valanciunas has exposed how much the team needs Lowry.

3. Klay Thompson, Golden State Warriors
The catch and shoot machine has taken the third scoring option role for the Warriors with the addition of Kevin Durant in the offseason, but that doesn’t mean his game has degraded. The opposite is actually true. Durant paired with the splash brothers and Draymond Green allows more floor spacing which in return leads to better looks for shooters.

Klay might not be second fiddle anymore unless Durant remains sidelined into the postseason, but his game suits that style. He is the Ray Allen to Steph’s Paul Pierce and KD’s KG in this scenario.

2. Bradley Beal, Washington Wizards
This is the first-time Beal has looked like he belongs in the league. His health has always been a concern seeing as how he missed several long stints of time in his first four seasons, and outside of one playoff performance, nothing showed he deserved the near-max deal he received this offseason.

He has stayed healthy and proven that he deserved that payday as he and John Wall have become potentially the deadliest backcourt in the NBA. If he can keep up this play and stay healthy in the postseason, Washington is going to be a hard out for anyone they face.

1. James Harden, Houston Rockets
The would-be MVP has taken a team that many had no faith in during the preseason to the upper seeds in the loaded West. After Dwight Howard walked and management added former Pelicans, Eric Gordon and Ryan Anderson, fans looked at them and saw a defensive wreck that would be tanking come March.

Instead, we have the third seed that can drop 20+ three pointers any given night. He has a nice supporting cast around him and turns the ball over a little too much for my liking, but what he has done this season has taken those flaws and hidden them behind a sky darkened with three-point attempts.

About Mohamed Bah

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