Shooting guards in today’s NBA are a mixture of the former top dogs and new emerging stars. One common similarity of all these players are that their team depends on them to score them points and be leaders on their teams. Here are the Top 10 shooting guards heading into this season.
10) Kevin Martin, Houston Rockets - “The Forgotten One,” last year he was a little banged up but he is a weapon on the offensive side of the ball. He’s played for the Kings and now the Rockets in his career and has never gotten credit for his talents. If the Rockets make the playoffs this year, he will have a big say in it.
9) Eric Gordon, New Orleans Hornets - Gordon barely saw the floor last year and in his brief career has had hard times staying healthy. When healthy he has shown flashes of superstar ability. He just signed a huge max contract with the Hornets this off-season, and if he can stay healthy we will finally be able to see if he live up to the hype.
8) Monta Ellis, Milwaukee Bucks- Probably one of the best pure scores in the league. He is in his true prime right now however, I wonder if he will turn all his talent into wins for his team. He is the key to the Bucks success this season I feel.
7) Paul George, Indiana Pacers - The youngster of this group, George is only 22 years old and still a very raw talent. In his second year last year he made huge strides so I’m expected a lot from him this year. He is physically and athletically freakish; if he puts it all together, watch out for the Pacers.
6) Andre Iguodala, Denver Nuggets - He was traded from the 76ers to the Nuggets in the blockbuster deal involving Dwight Howard and Andrew Bynum and he flies under the radar when it comes to that deal. The Nuggets have a similar identity to his former team, the 76ers. He is a great fit in Denver and I feel he will have a huge year under George Karl. He averaged 12 PPG, 6 APG, 6 RPG last season which was good but I expect even more scoring out of him this season to go along with his lockdown defense.
5) Joe Johnson, Brooklyn Nets - With a change of scenery for Johnson, Atlanta to Brooklyn, I expect him to have an excellent year. With Deron Williams running the point Johnson should benefit tremendously. His success could determine the success of the Nets as a whole. Expect to see his PPG rise from 18.8 to 21 or 22 PPG with the help of Williams.
4) James Harden, Oklahoma City Thunder - Harden has been the best sixth man in the league since he was drafted. He’s only 23 years old but I think his experience with Team USA should benefit him this year. He’s part of the core of the Thunder, and his disappearing act in the playoffs should make him hungry for this next season.
3) Manu Ginobili, San Antonio Spurs- Manu is Such an impact player and can do so many things when he’s healthy, but that has been his problem. His age and durability hurt his ranking but if can stay healthy he is one of the deadliest offensive threats in the game.
2) Dwyane Wade, Miami Heat - Wade is coming off of a championship season with the Miami Heat and offseason knee surgery. Even on one knee this past postseason, Wade was a huge part of the Heat’s championship run. He enters this season fully healthy and should be his normal 24 PPG, 5 APG and 5 RPG from last season.
1) Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers- I mean come on, did you expect any different? Even at 39 and with 16 years under his belt, he is still Kobe. Last season, The Black Mamba, averaged a staggering 28 PPG, 5 APG and 5 RPG. As for this season, with the additions of Steve Nash and Dwight Howard, we should expect Kobe to be his typical great self.