The Year of the Point Guard

At Basketball Prospectus, Kevin Pelton points out that just a few days into the playoffs, we have already had an insane list of truly stellar point guard performances. He cites the following:

  • 36 points, 11 assists (Derrick Rose)

  • 29 points, nine rebounds, seven assists (Rajon Rondo)

  • 27 points, seven assists (Aaron Brooks)

  • 16 points, 17 assists (Deron Williams)

  • 36 points, eight assists (Chauncey Billups)

  • 21 points, 11 assists (Chris Paul)

  • 19 points, 16 assists, 12 rebounds (Rondo)

  • 38 points, eight assists (Tony Parker)

It's a really good point. Pelton wonders if this might be the logical conclusion of a process that began with the league's disallowing hand-checking on the perimeter a few years ago. That placed a premium on speed, and just about all of these guys are among the NBA's fastest players.

Pelton also points out that if you're upset that your team is letting one of these guys into the lane ... realize that everybody does that. That's just the reality these days. Players this quick, with rules that restrictive, make for a lot of dribble penetration. And if you're a basketball fan, that's pretty darned exciting.

It also makes me wonder if we might eventually reach a point where a lightning-quick point guard might just be one of those things you have to have, like a 7-foot (or close) center.