Mark Jackson: Stephen Curry Deserves All-NBA 1st Team Over Chris Paul

Adam FromalNational NBA Featured ColumnistMarch 14, 2014

Golden State Warriors' Stephen Curry dribbles the ball around Los Angeles Clippers' Chris Paul during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Los Angeles, Wednesday, March 12, 2014. (AP Photo/Danny Moloshok)
Danny Moloshok/Associated Press

Mark Jackson is not bashful when trying to make cases for members of the Golden State Warriors in the NBA's award races. 

When he spoke with San Jose Mercury News' Tim Kawakami before the Dubs' Friday night contest with the Cleveland Cavaliers, he did more than claim Andrew Bogut deserves serious consideration for Defensive Player of the Year. Jackson even said that Stephen Curry, not Chris Paul, should be a member of the All-NBA team at the end of the 2013-14 campaign. 

"Steph Curry is obviously an All-NBA player. When you think about the level he’s played at this year, and he continues, and where we are, he deserves it," he espoused. When prompted, he took the statement even further by agreeing that it should be a first-team nomination.

And that wasn't it: 

Chris Paul’s an all-time great. Not just a great player today, he’s an all-time great point guard when you think about the guys that have played in this league…

I think the missing games hurt him to an extent, with all due respect. And because of Steph’s durability during the course of this year, and he’s done it at a high level. So I would say Steph.

But not taking anything away from Chris Paul and his greatness.

To be fair, Jackson was asked to make a specific comparison to CP3. Yet this is probably still going to be used as even more bulletin-board fodder for the burgeoning rivalry between the Warriors and the Los Angeles Clippers

Jackson is right, though. 

Paul has played at an unbelievably high level when healthy, and he's still the best point guard in basketball. But there's a big difference between being the best and earning first-team consideration. 

OAKLAND, CA - DECEMBER 25: Stephen Curry #30 of the Golden State Warriors drives to the basket against Chris Paul #3 of the Los Angeles Clippers on December 25, 2013 at Oracle Arena in Oakland, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agr
Rocky Widner/Getty Images

To use reductio ad absurdum, Kobe Bryant is still a top shooting guard in the Association, but I can list dozens of 2-guards who would deserve more All-NBA consideration than the Mamba, simply because he's only played six games. 

As J.M. Poulard wrote earlier in the year for Warriors World, an ESPN TrueHoop affiliate, "The discussion regarding the backcourt for the league’s premier five-man unit at this point in the season revolves around Curry, Parker and Harden." 

It's tough to disagree, though I'd submit Goran Dragic, John Wall, Dwyane Wade and Kyle Lowry's names for consideration as well. 

That said, who would've ever thought that health would be used as an argument for Curry?