Picking the point guards for your fantasy basketball team can make or break your season. These are the guys responsible for most of your team’s assists, but if you only get a guy who dishes the rock, you may come up short on other categories.
Follow these rankings and be sure to align the PGs strengths with the overall makeup of your team.
Rankings: SG | SF | PF | C
The Top 10
1. Chris Paul, New Orleans Hornets—Assists, points, steals, rebounds—Chris Paul cannot be stopped, which is why he is the top fantasy player entering the 2009-10 season.
Last year, Paul shot about 50 percent for the first time in his career and there are no signs of his production dropping off. The one knock on Paul is that he hasn't developed a strong three point shot, and because he penetrates so well he may never rely on the three.
2. Deron Williams, Utah Jazz—For the first time in his career, Williams failed to play 80 games last year when he suited up for 68 due to an ankle injury to start the season. The injury did not nag him throughout the season and you can expect Williams to play at an elite level for the entire season.
You can count on Williams to attack 20 and 10, he doesn't rebound much because the Jazz have several players who do that, but he does add acceptable defensive numbers for a point guard (1.1 SPG). Williams isn't shy about shooting threes and if he can replicate the high-30 to low-40 percentage that he has hit a few times he may surprise you from deep.
3. Steve Nash, Phoenix Suns—The MVP days are long behind Nash, but he is still good for elite fantasy production. The Suns want to pick the tempo back up, which means more possession for Nash to get back above 10 assists per game after failing to do so for the first time in four years.
Nash does not steal many balls and he is somewhat turnover-prone, but he is one of the most accurate shooters in the NBA and he should make over two threes per game this year.
4. Devin Harris, New Jersey Nets—After a questionable transition to New Jersey two years ago, Harris exploded on the scene in his first full season with the Nets. Along with a career best 6.9 assists and 21.3 points per game, Harris was fourth in the NBA with 7.2 free throws made per game—something that may be instrumental if your league settings call for it.
The biggest problem with Harris was that he only played 69 games last year and 64 the year before, but that is not enough to keep him off your roster, especially with him primed to make more threes than ever in his career.
5. Chauncey Billups, Denver Nuggets—The move home to Denver was an easy one for Billups and now that he is comfortable in George Karl's up-tempo offense—I expect him to have another successful year.
Only once before has Billups attempted more threes than he did in 77 games with the Nuggets last year and he has been stealing more balls as he gets older. Due to great conditioning fantasy owners have been able to count on Billups all year long, but if the Nuggets have their playoff spot locked up his numbers may dwindle in April.
6. Gilbert Arenas, Washington Wizards—*Buyer Beware*—Even if Arenas minutes per game floats around 30, it should be enough time for him to score 20 points per game with an assist average between five and seven per game.
Flip Saunders wants Gilbert to be Gilbert this year, but Agent Zero may be done shooting 30-foot threes now that he has a new outlook on the game. Ultimately, his knees and finger will scare me too much unless I can get him at a discount.
7. Baron Davis, Los Angles Clippers—*Buyer Beware*—Fantasy owners living in the 20 points per game days need to realize that's not the plan in LA, but Davis can still be a fantasy stud this year.
I am expecting a scoring average closer to 20 than 15 and his assists will challenge eight per game. Davis is very good at generating steals; he hits threes and he should be playing better basketball overall for a more competitive Clippers team in 2009-10.
8. Jason Kidd, Dallas Mavericks—In 110 games with the Mavs, Kidd has failed to average double digits in scoring, but that is the only knock on his production. The most impressive part of Kidd’s game is that he has taken advantage of open looks from behind the arc, converting on 131 of his 323 attempts last year.
Kidd can still bring home the triple-double, he is aggressive in stealing the basketball, and he converts from the stripe, all while maintaining low turnover numbers.
9. Jose Calderon, Toronto Raptors—Nothing will wow you about Calderon's game, but he is the most efficient player in the NBA. If you are building a team that wins with low turnovers and great percentages, he is the point guard for you.
Calderon did have to fight through injuries last season, but he still posted career best averages in almost every category, including 98.1 percent shooting from the stripe.
10. Derrick Rose, Chicago Bulls—With Ben Gordon gone, Rose will have the ball in his hands even more which will give him a chance to improve on his 16.8 points and 6.3 assists per game as a rookie.
A very good athlete, Rose can rebound, but his 0.8 steals per game were a disappointment, and he has a long way to go on his deep ball. Ultimately, the bulk load of points and assists give Rose the edge in rounding out the top-10.
Rajon Rondo, Boston Celtics—Rondo does everything Kidd does except threes and free throw percentage, he is poised for a great year.
Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder—He may not add too much to his 16.1 points per game as a starter, but Westbrook has unlimited potential in assists and steals, and he rebounds well too.
Tony Parker, San Antonio Spurs—No complaints with his production (aside from no three ball) but Parker's ankle has me worried, either his minutes or games will take the hit.
Monta Ellis, Golden State Warriors—*Buyer Beware*—May have an elite fantasy season, but his career has been in a downward spiral ever since the crash. Buy at a discount.
Jameer Nelson, Orlando Magic—Doesn't have a serious risk of re-injury, Nelson is great from three but only solid to good everywhere else.
Mo Williams, Cleveland Cavaliers—The Cavs added depth this summer which means less pressure on Williams and more open looks from three.
Mike Bibby, Atlanta Hawks—The Hawks added two players to their backcourt, but Bibby is still the best point guard of the bunch.
T.J. Ford, Indiana Pacers—Always an injury risk, but Ford is a good pick in the Pacers offense.
Raymond Felton, Charlotte Bobcats—Consistent career line means what you see is what you get, he might get traded mid-season too—for better or worse.
Andre Miller, Portland Trailblazers—Unhappy in Portland already, if he's not a starter his production won't match his fantasy price tag.
Don't Sleep On
Tyreke Evans, Sacramento Kings—Will make strong push for ROY from day one.
Chris Duhon - New York Knicks—If you lack threes and/or assists this is your man late in the draft.
Allen Iverson, Memphis Grizzlies—His role hasn't been defined yet, but AI wants to be on the court and the Grizz want people in the seats—potential is worth the pick.
Aaron Brooks, Houston Rockets—Won't post traditional PG numbers, but has an explosive scoring ability from inside and out.
Rodney Stuckey, Detroit Pistons—Still developing, the addition of Gordon means less ball handling for the big combo-guard.
Louis Williams, Philadelphia 76ers—Will start at the point for Philly, willingness to shoot on any possession is better for fantasy owners than his teammates.
DJ Augustine, Charlotte Bobcats—If Felton hits the road, D.J. will hover right below the fantasy elite.
Mario Chalmers, Miami Heat—Low assists alongside Wade, but he hits threes (1.4) and gets steals (2.0).