There are a few teams in the NBA with a point guard problem. Take a look at New Jersey with Devin Harris; they’re looking at fantastic freshman John Wall to take care of his woes at the point guard position.
Let’s take a look at the Grizzles; they're in the same situation. They drafted Michael Conley three years ago, and he has yet to live up to his expectations. Many don’t know if they’ll attack the point guard position, but my guess is that they’ll grab a forward off the board.
So, there are teams out there looking for young point guards to possibly lead or help the team’s progress.
But according to many—including me—after John Wall, I don’t foresee any point guard being selected in the lottery, or even the first round, with the exception of Armon Johnson.
There aren’t many point guards out this year, so it’s a much weaker draft for the position, but here are the top point guards of this year's draft.
Tommy Mason-Griffin declared after just one year in college. Many people are saying this is a mistake, me included.
First off Mason-Griffin is only 5'11". Not many teams are going to take him, especially a player of his size.
Secondly, he displayed little or no defense. Like his counterpart Willie Warren, he can be very lazy at times.
And lastly, this is just a silly decision. After one year in college and more weaknesses shown than advantages, you declare?
However, Mason-Griffin is a fast-paced type of player who runs the floor really well in transition. He is also equipped with a deadly shooting stroke, not to mention, he is one of those “prove you wrong” type of player.
Many people didn’t expect much of an impact from him, at 5'11", playing at Oklahoma, but yet he was one of the most dominating players on the floor every night.
Think: Much smaller Kyle Lowry.
Before that picture was taken, Jerome Randle knocked down a buzzer beater from just inside half court. Oh yeah, they went on to win the game against Louisville before losing to the national champion Duke.
Jerome Randle is a 5'9" point guard who excelled in the college game because of his speed. In the NBA, some teams can match his speed and won’t allow him to be a playmaker every night. But that’s when he starts knocking down shots.
He has a nice form to his shot, and he shoots it very quickly. Being 5'9", he is able to make tough shots with a man in his face.
He has one of the quickest first steps in the draft, and if he can’t get to the rim, his vision allows him to kick it out efficiently. He displays great ball-handling skills, and with his soft touch after he gets to the rim, he changes directions in the air to get the attempt off.
Think: JJ Barea.
What I like to call a true point guard.
Denis Clemente was a part of the Kansas State Wildcats team that nobody ever thought would amount to anything this season.
Clemente and Pullen both single-handedly kept this team alive all year. People, I'm saying that K-State had the deadliest backcourt in the land, putting up 50-plus points together in the NCAA tournament each game.
Clemente himself is a hard worker. He has a high motor and rarely slows down. Always looking to shoot the three and push the tempo.
His three-point shot is deadly, and when I say deadly, I mean deadly. You needed a much-needed three, Clemente is the right man to call on. He is very mature and not afraid to take the big shot.
But not only does he shoot, but he penetrates the lane very aggressively. You think John Wall had speed, you obviously haven’t witnessed Clemente push the rock. When he pushes the rock, his head is always up, and he is working on his plan of attack. Has decent vision, along with good passing skills.
Think: Chris Paul with basic court vision.
Jon Scheyer was the point guard on the national champion Duke Blue Devils.
Before the season started, many people questioned his point guard ability. Thought he was too slow or lacked the point guard skills to contribute at the position. Well, he proved those people wrong, and he handle the point guard position very well. Actually lead his team to a national championship win.
He is a good spot-up shooter, on-the-move shooter, off-the-dribble shooter, and a just plain very good shooter. Scheyer has a good stroke from the three-point line, but is better in the mid-range game.
Seeing that he spent all four years with Coach K has to be a plus on his resume.
He stays under control on offense. Not one of those guys to get crazy with the shot when driving to the basket. At 6'5", he is able to float the ball inside the paint over the bigger defender and sometimes score over them.
Scheyer is a great leader, but needs to develop the quickness and feel for the point guard position at the NBA level. Think Coach K isn’t on his mind?
Think: J.J. Redick or Kirk Hinrich.
Grevis Vasquez was the recipient of the Bob Cousy Award this year, and earned every bit of it. Vasquez was a great player on and off the court. He is the type of player someone could coach even while sitting on the bench.
Vasquez is an inspirational player. He is the player who brings a lot of leadership and compassion to the game of basketball.
He went out there and wanted every single game he played. He didn’t want to lose—that was the last thing on his mind.
Vasquez is listed at 6'6" and has the skills to play point guard at the next level. He is equipped with a nice mid-range stroke and the ability to get to the rim.
What scares me the most about Vasquez is his inability to consistently finish around the rim at the college level. Seeing as he is much smaller in weight than most NBA players, it’s going to be tougher finishing at the rim in the pros.
However, he is a good guard who displays very good court vision and passing skills. Vasques can definitely excel in this league, if given a chance.
Think: Rudy Fernandez with floor general skills.
Sherron Collins is the mature point guard out of the University of Kansas.
Collins spent his entire career at Kansas playing behind some current NBA players in Brandon Rush and Mario Chalmers.
Sherron Collins is a great leader. Do you remember how he almost turned the ball over in the championship game against Memphis? Since then, I haven’t seen him make an idiot play.
He was the backbone of Kansas this year. He single-handedly brought them back against Cornell Big Red, Kansas State (twice), and helped them pull away from Nebraska and other teams.
Collins has a high basketball I.Q., and knows where his soft spots are and where his teammate’s soft spots are. He likes to hit his teammates in stride for easy jumpers or layups. His court vision skills are above average, although not superior yet.
He is a stocky point guard, so he can finish at the rim productively and also hit three-point or mid-range jumpers.
Think: Will Bynum.
Mikhail Torrance is a 6'5" combo guard who can play at either position.
He displays above-average athleticism to go along with his quickness.
He has a good first step that allows him to blow by most defenders and get into the lane. Then it’s all about which move he will pull out of his arsenal.
Torrance is a four-year player out of the SEC conference, which boasted the most fantastic freshman recruiting class I’ve witnessed. The national champion Gators were also around during his freshman year in college.
All that competition transformed him into a great NBA prospect.
He is a great shooter. Is more comfortable shooting the mid-range shot, but can stretch it out to the three-point line when needed.
He is a great prospect for any team looking for a scoring point guard. But offense is just a start. He can also play defense very well.
Think: Shaun Livingston.
Eric Bledsoe is one of the fantastic freshmen from the University of Kentucky.
Bledsoe is 6'1" and just as fast as John Wall. He has a very quick first step that allows him to get into the paint. Unlike other point guards in this draft, he is very strong finishing around the rim.
Floaters and mid-range shots are also a part of his game. He incorporates them all separately to keep the offense guessing.
With his size and speed, I can already see him knuckling up on NBA point guards and winning the battle. In college, he used his long arms and a very good defensive stance to rip the defender.
This translates very well in the NBA.
Here are the things that bother some NBA teams when looking at Bledsoe: unproven leadership abilities, turnovers, and inconsistent three-point jump shot.
Shooting mechanics can be easily turned into a strength in the pros, but the leadership and turnovers part depend on him.
Think: Mo Williams.
Armon Johnson is a 6'3", left-handed point guard, with the ability to score the basket at will.
He is very quick on the court, which benefits transition plays. It also translates well in the one-on-one situations. He uses his speed to blow past the defender and uses his vision to either kick it out, or keep it himself and score the basket.
Along with his driving ability is his jump shot. He gets a lot of lift on his shot, and doesn’t hesitate to take the shot. That can sometimes be a good thing or bad thing.
But he is equipped with a high basketball I.Q. and knows his limit on offense and won’t exceed it very often. Not unless he's doing the impossible—which I was happy to witness a few times.
But enough with offense. Let’s talk a little defense.
With his 6'3" frame, he is able to get into the defender and not allow him to get in his offensive set.
Very key for teams in the West that display some of the best point guards in the NBA.
Think: Delonte West.
Where do I start?
John Wall is one heck of a talent. Everybody is expecting him to come in right away and help the Nets at the point guard position, but has everybody forgotten that his skill set is still a bit raw?
John Wall is a very fast point guard, who likes to push the ball coast to coast. Excels in transition and is always looking for the easy bucket.
Along with transition, he uses his speed to get into the lane at will. His first step usually allows him to blow past the defender and finish around the rim.
His athleticism allows him to alter his shot in mid-air.
Wall has good court vision skills and is always looking to set his teammates up. When running in transition—unlike other point guards in the draft—Wall is very alert and looking for a sliver of daylight to squeeze his pass in.
Along with his offense, John Wall is defensively sound. He isn’t the one to lock a defender down, but he can knock you out of your offensive set. With that, he can also become a weak-side shot blocker
Think: Derrick Rose.
I hope this slideshow showed you just how weak this draft is in the point guard position. Half of them could possibly go undrafted.
For the other half, no one is said to be good enough to take in the lottery or with the first 20 picks.
Sorry folks, this isn’t the year for point guards.