Top Point Guard Draft Prospects
The 2009 NBA Draft point guard class offers plenty of intrigue, even without a certain Spanish senor tossing his hat into the ring. There’s an American in Europe, a bunch of shooting guards trapped in point guard bodies, undersized playmakers and a “small” school point guard who could be the best of the bunch.
Here is where Draft 365 currently has these primo point guards ranked, with our preseason ranking in brackets.
1. Brandon Jennings – Italy – 1989 (2)
When it comes to experience, none of the other guys on this list come close to matching BJ. While there has been much ado about his difficulties in Europe, lets be perfectly honest—the dude is making over a $1 million to play basketball in one of the world’s most famous cities. In the grand scheme of things, the kid is doing alright.
While his performance and playing time has been sporadic—29 minutes one game, 9 minutes the next—he is playing against the top competition outside of the NBA and hasn’t hurt his draft stock in the least.
2. Stephen Curry – Davidson – JR (No. 4, shooting guard)
He’s not really a point guard but he plays one on TV. Considering we don’t plan on writing a “Top 5 Combo Guard” column, Dell’s little boy will be on our point guard list. Whether or not he plays the point in the pros will probably depend on what team drafts him. He has proven this year that he is quite capable of running the point in the college ranks, while still scoring almost 30 ppg against constant double and triple teams. He also is taking relatively good care of the ball and is a good playmaker. He might not be an NBA star but probably won’t be a NBA bust, either.
3. Jeff Teague – Wake Forest – SO (NR)
Next to Kentucky’s Jodie Meeks, Jeff Teague is probably the biggest surprise of the season. His numbers, while playing in one of the top conferences on a team formerly ranked No. 1 overall, are astounding. 54 percent shooting from the floor. 53 percent from deep. 83 percent from the line. About 22 points, 4 boards, 4 dimes and 2 steals per game. 34 points, 6 boards and 4 assists in a win over North Carolina.
Now the fine print. Despite being 6-2, 180 pounds, he’s not really a point guard. He has almost as many turnovers than assists. To excel in the NBA, he will have to prove that he has the goods to run the point. But all the tools are there. Consider him an Allen Iverson-lite.
4. Eric Maynor – VCU – SR (5)
Some are calling Eric Maynor the best pure point guard in the class. He definitely has the complete package – scoring (22 ppg), dishing (6 dimes) and boarding (4 rebounds) with the ability to knock down shots from everywhere on the floor, including out behind the arc. He also takes very good care of the ball. He doesn’t play in one of the top conferences, however, and when he did play, one of the top teams this year—Oklahoma—he laid an 5-19 egg with 8 turnovers.
5. Darren Collison – UCLA – SR (4)
Darren Colliso’s UCLA squad has been a major disappointment this season, but the senior playmaker is as steady as ever. His shooting touch, despite being ugly, is still highly effective—he’s only missed 3 free throws (out of 67) all season and is good for one to two long-bombs a game. He is still a top-notch defender and playmaker, with a stellar 2.55 assist-to-turnover ratio. He might not be star material—he probably is too small and not explosive enough—but he could be a steady back up/occasional starting point guard for a long time in the NBA.
Next in line:
Ty Lawson, North Carolina; Patrick Mills, Saint Mary’s; Jeremy Pargo, Gonzaga; Greivis Vasquez, Maryland; Curtis Jerrells, Baylor.
Not expected to enter draft:
Ricky Rubio, Spain; Jrue Holiday, UCLA.
Jeff Fox also writes about college hoops and the NBA draft at College Hoops Net.