Ranking the best backcourts in the NBA between Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, John Wall and Bradley Beal and others
Here are your definitive, can't-argue-against-them rankings of the best backcourts in the NBA today.
1. Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson, Warriors
No surprises here. Curry and Thompson are both perennial All-NBA selections and part of the core of a two-time championship team. They are each among the best shooters of all-time and will almost certainly be in the Hall of Fame someday. Curry is a two-time MVP and Thompson is one of the best defenders at his position. They are the best duo in today's game and one of the best guard combos of all-time. It's not often throughout NBA history that a title team was built around two guards, but that was the case when they won in 2014-15 before Kevin Durant showed up and made the Warriors even better.
2. Chris Paul and James Harden, Rockets
The Rockets pulled off one of the biggest trades of the offseason, yes just one of them because there were so many, to bring in Paul, an eight-time All-NBA selection who is still in the backend of his prime. It's too early to know how well this will work and Paul is unfortunately hurt right now, but the credentials between him and Harden lock them in at No. 2. Paul is the best two-way point guard in the game and Harden is among the best scorers this league has seen in a long time. Harden has been the runner-up for MVP twice and is coming off his best season.
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3. John Wall and Bradley Beal, Wizards
Wall and Beal come in at No. 3 on this list, which some would argue is obvious. Well, here's a prediction: by the end of the season Wall and Beal will pass Paul and Harden as No. 2. How does that sound? Here's the reasoning. Paul and Harden are great, but Paul is on the decline. Wall and Beal are continuing to get better and that has been particularly evident in Beal's play so far this season. Also, both Wall and Beal have All-Defensive team potential. Wall has already made second-team once. Their potential as a two-way combo will ultimately be what separates them from the rest of the pack.
4. Damian Lillard and C.J. McCollum, Blazers
By now most know how good Lillard is. He's a two-time All-NBA selection who can score with the best of them. He can light it up from three-point range and has one of the best stepback jumpers in the game. He's also a pretty decent rapper. But McCollum deserves some attention, too. He's improved every single season he's been in the NBA and has emerged as one of the best scoring guards in basketball. He's a very accurate three-point shooter (42.1% in 2016-17) and led the NBA in free-throw percentage last season (91.2%). He's also a solid passer from the two-guard spot. He hasn't made the All-Star team yet, but it's only a matter of time.
5. Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan, Raptors
Some may be surprised at how low Lowry and DeRozan are on this list, but we're splitting hairs at this point. Lowry and DeRozan are an excellent combination that has helped the Raptors win 48 games or more in four straight seasons. Both can score, rebound, pass and get steals and both shoot for a high percentage from the field. DeRozan is one of the best in the league at getting to the free throw line and Lowry is one of the most consistent three-point shooters around.