The Sports Unbiased best point guard debate series continues this week, this time we shift gears to the highly competitive West Coast, where a slew of highly talented point guards have been on a statistical rampage offering nothing less than MVP performances on a regular basis. Among the list of elite point guards are: Mike Conley, Stephen Curry, and Damian Lillard just to name a few.
Each of these players have proven to be leaders of their respective teams, as their current winning percentage is direct evidence of their superiority on the court–unfortunately, there can be only one. Sports Unbiased writers Keith Rivas, Bobby Bourhis, and Jr. Williams discuss their choice for the best point guard in the Western Conference.
Who’s the Best Point Guard in the Western Conference?
Mike Conley Jr. – Memphis Grizzlies
Conley was huge, particularly in the 3OT win in San Antonio, with clutch shots and a huge game tying three in the closing seconds to keep the Grizzlies in the game.
In the West, especially with Rajon Rondo in the mix now (Mavericks), it’s going to be do or die come playoff time. Conley is what the Grizzlies need if they’re serious about a championship run (which they should be, this is pro sports). Conley will just need to keep playing unselfishly early on and then do what he does best in the closing moments and go all out and close out the opponent.
Stephen Curry – Golden State Warriors
Bobby Bourhis: The Western Conference has a variety of talent at the point guard position—especially with the addition of Rajon Rondo to the Mavericks. Some of the elite point guards in the west include Chris Paul, Stephen Curry, Mike Conley, Tony Parker, Rajon Rondo, Jrue Holiday and Damian Lillard. Chris Paul has widely been considered the best point guard in the game, but with the emergence of Steph Curry, Mike Conley and Damian Lillard there is no longer a clear answer to the question.
Stephen Curry in particular, has shown the ability to drive to the basket and finish, as well as defend at a higher level. I wouldn’t consider Curry an elite defender quite yet, but he is certainly above average. Steals are not necessarily representative of a great defender, but nonetheless Curry is top five in the league averaging 2.0 spg. Offensively, we already know that Curry is as good as it gets in the NBA. He combines an extremely efficient three point shot with great finishing ability around the rim, and a unique passing ability that allows him to keep defenses on their heels. Based on his efficiency and well-rounded skillset, Stephen Curry has established himself as the best point guard in the western conference. Damian Lillard, Chris Paul and Mike Conley are all close behind him though.
Jr. Williams: Stephen Curry is hands-down the best point guard in the Western Conference right now. Not only are his offensive numbers superior at 23.9 ppg, 7.6 apg, and 5.3 rpg, but the Warriors have also set a franchise record with their recently snapped 16-game win streak. If Curry and Co. can sustain their high level of play, they could be en route to winning 60+ games this season. Bear in mind last season the Warriors went 51-31, therefore, 60 victories are certainly not out of the question, as head coach Steve Kerr has this team firing on all cylinders.
Season after season Curry continues to impress, his shooting stroke is as pure as they come in the league and he’s shooting better than .46 from the arc for the month of December. The only way to slow him down is to chase him off the 3-point line, but his release is so quick, he continues to be a threat anywhere on the court. On the downside, he has been prone to turnovers, averaging more than 3.2 per game. Nonetheless, Curry should walk away with the December player of the month award, as his name is already mentioned among current MVP candidates.