29.5 9.7 4.4
Career: 22.3 5.8 5.0
For some reason, Espn.com still is listing James Harden as a point guard. I know he was playing point last season, but I thought the addition of Chris Paul to the team would change that. This error actually posed a slight problem initially while making my selections for this list. Because if James Harden was still considered a point guard, he would be second best behind Westbrook. Which would have took Curry off the list. Then I would have to move my second best shooting guard to one and then find a second shooting guard. Instead of going through those shenanigans, I decided to go on si.com and see what position they had Harden at. As you can see, I went with their better judgment and also listed him as a shooting guard. The thing about Harden it doesn’t matter what position he is listed at. He is a shooting guard by nature. Yes, he is a great passer and the amount of triple doubles he racks up, shows he has developed into a more complete offensive player. However his greatest attribute on the court is scoring. It is what he is and he can’t change it.
21.7 2.7 3.8
Career: 19.1 2.3 3.4
Klay Thompson has been a mainstay on my list for the past few years. I just mentioned that I almost had to put Harden in the point guard slot. If that would have had happened, then Bradley Beal would have been my choice for the second best shooting guard. I don’t know if the Warriors players are better because they are surrounded by other good players. Or are they simply good individually players who when they come together become great collectively. I think it may be a little of both. I would be curious to see how Klay would perform as the leader of a team. I have never saw him as the focal point of an offense. I think he would still be able to score because that jumper is going to work, no matter what uniform he has on. However not having the defense worry about Steph on one end and KD on the other, would definitely cripple his game.
28.8 9.1 7.2
Career: 27.2 7.1 7.3
Is it wrong that I want to talk about Derrick Rose on a heading that clearly states LeBron James? D. Rose was acquired by the Cleveland Cavaliers this season, so there is a connection to LBJ. When Rose left the team this season and hinted that he might want to retire, it made me curious. And what I concluded was that Rose hasn’t want to play ball in years. I don’t know what is going on in his personal life, but clearly he is not mentally into the frame of hooping. In addition to that, he hasn’t enhanced his game. You would think with all the injuries he has suffered that he would try to get a dependable jump shot. Before he got hurt this season, I saw him play and it was still the same game he had with the Bulls; just less explosive. In regards to LeBron, how about we stop with all the comparisons with the past and current greats. He is better all around player than Kobe. He is better than Kevin Durant and he will NEVER be better than Jordan. Period.
25.2 4.0 7.7
Career: 27.2 3.8 7.2
I wrote a couple of not so flattering things about Kevin Durant throughout the year. I talked about my disdain for him choosing the Warriors, and setting up a fake account on Twitter. I basically concluded that he was conducting himself as a champion and a winner. But let me be clear, KD is a beast who is getting better. Let me repeat, he is getting better. Yes, he does benefit from having a top flight team. However the freedom that Durant now enjoys has allowed him to improve the other aspects of his game. He is turning to a willing defender, who clearly is not afraid to guard the best player on any team. Also his maturity has turned him into a killer in clutch situations. By chance if he goes to another team, or they break up the nucleus of the Warriors, he is going to be more capable to lead a team on his own to a championship. I think he knows it too. I feel that’s why he still has chip on his shoulder. He now believes he is the best player in the world. No exceptions.