The current lack of NBA basketball has most of us thanking our lucky stars for The Last Dance. Hoop heads across the globe have been enjoying the documentary and sharing their thoughts on Social Media. It’s been a nice way to momentarily distract ourselves from the gaping void that’s been left in our lives.
One question that’s always been prominent in the mind of an NBA fan is the battle for supremacy at the point guard position. Twitter is rampant with debate on the topic, often fiery and in depth.
Understandably, being such a dynamic and varied position, there are so many characteristics that define the role. Leadership; passing, ball handling, dictating tempo, decision making. The list is in some ways, endless.
In order to make this fair, I’ve done this based on my personal knowledge of the players below. I’d like to caveat that I always knew Allen Iverson as a shooting guard that later adapted and moved to the point guard position.
Honourable mentions – Steve Nash, Jason Kidd, Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook
5 – Isiah Thomas
The Leader of the Pistons bad boy unit comes in at number 5. A force on both ends of the floor, OG Isiah Thomas had the whole package; defensive tenacity that struck fear in to any opposing point guard; the ability to dictate the pace of the game, acting as a floor general throughout his career; a passing ability to match any in history.
When thinking of Isiah Thomas, the thing that springs to mind most is his basketball IQ. Sure, the tenacity that came with the bad boy Pistons is well documented, however in order to make that successful there had to be finesse. Thomas was the one to provide that, which in turn helped bring two NBA championships to a unforgettable dynasty within the NBA.
4 – John Stockton
Although he may lack a championship ring, he sure did come close. How could you leave the man who holds the NBA all time record in assists and steals from a list like this? Bottom line is, you can’t.
Stockton could thread a needle like no other. He slept, ate and breathed the pick and roll, revolutionising the now most used offensive play in basketball.
He stayed true to his identity throughout his career, and although he may not have been an NBA poster boy, he certainly left his mark on the league.
3 – Oscar Robertson
A walking triple double. A man who stood 6’5, ran like he was 5’5 and had the presence of a man who was 7’5.
When I watch old Royals games, I find it such a shame that we didn’t live in his era. What he would have brought to today’s game.
Although we only have the archives to watch his greatness, there’s no denying the impact he had during his era of NBA basketball.
2 – Stephen Curry
This one hurt. Being a life long Denver Nuggets fan, I still cringe at the bitter memory of 2013. However, in game 2 of that series, I realised that Stephan Curry was no ordinary point guard. 30 points and 13 assists later, Stephan Curry made a young Nuggets hopeful realise that he was the future.
Okay, maybe he doesn’t pass like Stockton or handle the ball like Kyrie Irving does. What sets Curry apart from the pack is how much he has singlehandedly changed the game. He is without a doubt the best three point shooter we’ve ever seen, and still so young, I look forward to watching him break lots of records along the way.
1 – Earvin ‘Magic’ Johnson
Freak. That’s the first word that comes to mind. At 6’8, to have the ability to not only move like an Olympic sprinter, but to also have the ability to showcase a court vision that we’ve never seen since? What a player.
5 Championships, 3 MVP’s, countless other accolades. What more is there to say about a man who left such a huge mark on the league we all love?
This one is unanimous, unquestionably, Magic Johnson is the greatest point guard to ever grace the National Basketball Association.