The NBA: February 2014 Position Battle – The Top 5 Shooting Guards Right Now


In this Position Battle post, we will focus on the top five shooting guards at this point in the season. We will take into account just the players’ stats for the latest five games of their respective teams. This will, hopefully, give us a more current picture of each player’s production.

The shooting guard position hasn’t really been the most exciting position this season so far. Sure, James Harden and Dwyane Wade have been great, but SGs haven’t really filled up the highlight reels as much as, say, the Steph Currys (or Curries?), Kevin Durants, and LaMarcus Aldridges of the Association. Still, there is a lot of gam-changing talent here, and that’s what we will celebrate in this post.

Note: All of the following stats are based on each player’s stats as computed by HoopsStats.com. They were taken on February 12, 2014 (Manila time).


5. James Harden (HOU) - 23.0ppg, 3.0rpg, 3.3apg, 1.8spg, 2.5 triples per game, .933 FT%, 18.5 EFF
Yes, the Beard is just at fifth spot, which is quite low for him, who is considered by many the best active SG out there. With Harden playing really well, Houston has won 8 of its last 10 games, and they remain among the top five clubs in the Western Conference. His recent best was dropping 28 points on the Cavs on top of 4 assists and three triples.
           

4. Monta Ellis (DAL) - 17.8ppg, 4.0rpg, 4.0apg, 2.0spg, .469 FG%, 1.0 triples per game, .417 3pt%, .857 FT%, 18.6 EFF
Quietly, the Dallas Mavericks have clustered five straight wins, which is the second-longest active streak behind the Rockets’ six-game run. Ellis, not surprisingly, has been a major contributor in that winning run, playing awesome two-way basketball. His recent best was scoring 20 points with 3 assists, 3 steals, and 1 block in a close win by Dallas over Sacramento.

Monta Ellis has emerged as a vital cog for
the Dallas Mavericks.
(image by Jerome Miron/USA Today)


3. Dwyane Wade (MIA) - 20.0ppg, 4.8rpg, 4.2apg, .618 FG%, 20.0 EFF
I still cannot get over the fact that the Jazz beat the Heat, but we cannot’ really blame Wade much because he did shoot 50% from the field and score 19 points in that defeat. A couple of games before that, he even dropped a 30-10 beast on the hapless Pistons. That was Wade’s most productive game of the season yet, and it might just be a harbinger of things to come. He looks much healthier and more active than he was last year, and Miami should benefit big time.


2. Jamal Crawford (LAC) - 23.8ppg, 2.6rpg, 5.0apg, 1.6spg, .472 FG%, 2.2 triples per game, .952 FT%, 22.2 EFF
Chris Paul recently returned to action for the Clips, but Crawford is still LA’s best backcourt player right now. He hasn’t scored fewer than 19 points since February started, and the Clippers continue to continue to be firmly entrenched as the best Pacific Division team out there. What has been most impressive with Crawford is his all-around play. He norms just 3.3 assists for the year, but recently he has been handing out around 5 per game. He’s also stealing the ball nearly twice per outing, and shooting close to flawless from the line.

Jamal Crawford continues to carry the Clips this season.
(image by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

1. DeMar DeRozan (TOR) - 27.0ppg, 4.2rpg, 6.4apg, 1.2spg, 1.4 triples per game, .846 FT%, 23.6 EFF
If you told me prior to the start of the season that DeRozan would be among the league’s elite SGs and that the Raptors would be the number one Atlantic team, I would’ve barfed right in front of you and slapped you silly. But here we are, a few days away from the All-Star Weekend, and both of those things are true. DeRozan has been consistently productive for Toronto, and he has paired up really well with Kyle Lowry to form maybe the most unheralded but effective backcourt tandem in the league. Sure, the Raptors have won just two of five games so far in February, but look at this kid’s numbers – two 36-point games, great playmaking, great defense, and great shooting. Wow.


Outside looking in:
Trevor Ariza (WAS) - 18.0 EFF
Lance Stephenson (IND) - 17.0 EFF
Randy FOye (DEN) - 15.4 EFF



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