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90'sNBARocked
07-25-2011, 04:59 PM
Funny Joel is a big time Bulls fan, but gave props to are backcourt probably after watching the Bulls vs Pacers series.


A week ago, I used this space to look at which young frontcourts offered the most promise for their organizations and fans, and sparked quite a bit of healthy debate. That being the case, it only makes sense that we'd do the same sort of analysis for the league's young guards.

So today we'll take a look at which organizations have put together the most promising backcourts for their teams' long and short terms. I'm focusing on the younger guard combinations, giving special credit to those who have done the most so early in their careers.

Just like last week, I'm defining "youth" as "players who will enter the 2011-2012 season with five or fewer years of NBA experience underneath their belts." Teams that appear to be conspicuously missing from this list may have a vet with six or more years of experience, even if their frontcourt mate coming in is a rookie. Both guys have to be below that threshold.

Here they are, the top five most promising young backcourts in the NBA:

#5 Darren Collison & Paul George, Indiana Pacers While Collison had a relatively frustrating sophomore campaign as a starter in Indiana, he played significantly better after the midseason coaching change and should rebound quite well in his third season. George took over the starting shooting guard role about that same time (the coaching change) and has some really smart basketball people wondering if he won't be the best player on that team in a few years. They're still young and still have a lot to prove, but this backcourt holds a lot of promise. They'd be higher on the list had they realized as much potential as some of the guys listed above them have.

#4 Eric Bledsoe & Eric Gordon, L.A. Clippers We know the future of this team lies in the hands of Blake Griffin, but Gordon is equally important. He's easily one of the hottest young shooters in the league, and paired with Bledsoe, who had a surprisingly successful rookie season last year, the "other" L.A. team has quite a bit of potential before even taking Blake into consideration.

#3 John Wall & Nick Young, Washington Wizards Young had a breakout season last year, finishing the year averaging 17.4 ppg, and Wall is obviously one of the brightest young point guards in the entire league. Toss in Jordan Crawford, acquired from Atlanta at the trading deadline, and Washington really has a great young corps of guards with which to move forward. They've got to win some more games before the rest of the league takes them seriously, but there's absolutely no second-guessing these kids' talent.

#2 Ray Felton & Wes Matthews, Portland Trail Blazers Switching out Andre Miller for Ray Felton very quickly turned Portland from a creaky, aging team to one with quite a bit of youthful promise. Felton and Matthews both really came into their own last season, and while neither is an All-Star just yet, both could be in the discussion at some point in their careers. They're definitely among the most talented pairings in their conference, and one has to wonder what Portland could be if the rest of the roster were able to stay healthy.

#1 Russell Westbrook & James Harden, Oklahoma City Thunder Technically, Thabo Sefolosha is the starter, and with five years of experience he's actually eligible for this list as well, so between him and Harden at shooting guard and a prolific point guard like Russell Westbrook running the offense, it should be pretty clear that there isn't a better young backcourt in the entire NBA. Imagine what we'd be saying were the Thunder still running Kevin Durant at the two!

Honorable Mention:

Jerryd Bayless & DeMar DeRozan, Toronto Raptors Definitely the hardest duo to leave out of the top five, but their untapped potential still outweighs their tapped potential a little too heavily. While Bayless floated around a little bit this early in his career, he seems to have found a home in Toronto, where he'll undoubtedly take the helm whenever Jose Calderon moves on from the team. He and DeRozan, one of the most freakish athletes in the league, are really exciting to watch together, and their collective youth means they'll be together for a while. That's a good thing for the Raptors.

Jrue Holiday & Evan Turner, Philadelphia 76ers They're young, so they qualify, but only Holiday has really proven anything as a pro at this point. His leadership, despite being one of the youngest players in the league, has been pleasantly surprising, and Philly loves him moving forward. Turner, on the other hand, has been a huge disappointment thus far. He has plenty of career left to turn it around, but he just hasn't done enough yet to get him and his backcourt mate into the top five.

Toney Douglas & Landry Fields, New York Knicks The Knicks had to give up a lot to bring in Carmelo Anthony, but luckily Douglas and Fields weren't part of the deal. While both players are more "above average" than "exceptional," they still are now a big part of New York's immediate future. What keeps them out of the top five is the fact that, on rosters with more internal competition, they might not get the same opportunities for playing time. They also seem to be pretty close to their ceilings as players already, meaning their potential isn't quite as great as some of their colleagues. Both are solid young players, but other duos here are pretty obviously better.

D.J. Augustin & Gerald Henderson, Charlotte Hornets With Gerald Wallace and Stephen Jackson gone, the onus for success in North Carolina has fallen on Augustin and Henderson, both of whom stepped up bigger last year than anybody ever would've thought possible. Their talent (and in Augustin's case, his size) are somewhat limited on the larger scale of things, but the heart and leadership is definitely there. Those are great qualities in players so young.

Jimmer Fredette & Tyreke Evans, Sacramento Kings Let's be honest; a lot of us are skeptical about how well this backcourt is going to work together considering both Tyreke and Jimmer are accustomed to having the ball in their hands about 90% of the time. Since there's no such thing as 180% of a game with which to give each guy that many touches, it's hard to guess how this thing will end up. Still, both guys are individually very talented, as is young scorer Marcus Thornton, and that's what gets them here. We're skeptical, but optimistically so.

Ty Lawson & Wilson Chandler, Denver Nuggets Chandler and Lawson were both huge reasons that the Nuggets made such a splash in the regular season even after losing Carmelo Anthony. Neither is a huge star, but both are immensely talented, mature players, and should Denver keep Chandler (he's a free agent), they'll be able to keep this duo together for a few more years.

Ricky Rubio & Wes Johnson, Minnesota Timberwolves Johnson might technically be more of a small forward than a shooting guard, but he started at the two for Minnesota last season and his talent and potential are what carry this particular pairing in these rankings. Rubio, a former top-five pick making his debut this upcoming season, was pretty awful in Europe last year, so there's no telling what kind of NBA player he'll be just yet. That being the case, it's impossible to sneak these pups into the top five. Maybe we'll think differently in a year, but until Rubio proves himself, they'll stay in the land of honorable mention.

J.J. Barea & Roddy Beaubois, Dallas Mavericks There's no certainty that Barea will remain with the Mavericks after free agency comes and goes this offseason, but if he does, he and Beaubois are definitely the team's hope in the backcourt moving forward. They're very talented young players, but they're also both too far down the depth chart for now to be considered among the best in the league. They're worth mentioning, but they're not quite up there with NBA's best. At least not yet.

They say this league is more tailored towards point guards than any other position, so we know how important it is for a team to land a franchise point guard if they hope to have any hope at winning a ring. Three of the last #1 overall picks have, in fact, been point guards, likely for that very reason. So talented guards is obviously the way GMs build their teams for success, but adding the right young shooting guard is often equally crucial.

These organizations have the best combination of youth and talent, but you'll notice the most successful teams don't have major players on this list. Miami, Chicago, Boston, San Antonio, the L.A. Lakers, and even the Dallas starters aren't on here. Youth doesn't mean success right now in most instances. My guess, though, is that the top five teams on this list will see that success soon, due in large part to the young guys they have doing most of the ball handling and outside shooting.



Read more NBA news and insight: http://www.hoopsworld.com/Story.asp?story_id=20463#ixzz1T9Xjl2zF

ECKrueger
07-25-2011, 05:01 PM
Pretty good sigh to make the top 5 promising in both front court and back court, and have our best player playing between them as well.

ballism
07-25-2011, 06:01 PM
So Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson don't even make top 13 young backcourts? :rolleyes:
I don't even care what one thinks about Klay Thompson. Even if you put Jeremy Lin next to Curry they should still be near the top.

I thought omitting Love&co from top 10 frontcourts was ridiculous, but this one is beyond ridiculous.

OakMoses
07-25-2011, 06:11 PM
I really fail to see how we have a better young backcourt than Philly. Holiday is already quite a bit better than DC. Therefore George has to be a lot than Evan Turner which is a pretty tall order.

Sent from my DROID2 using Tapatalk

90'sNBARocked
07-25-2011, 06:40 PM
So Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson don't even make top 13 young backcourts? :rolleyes:
I don't even care what one thinks about Klay Thompson. Even if you put Jeremy Lin next to Curry they should still be near the top.

I thought omitting Love&co from top 10 frontcourts was ridiculous, but this one is beyond ridiculous.

The criteria was "under 5 years experience" and to be fair Golden States' current backcourt is Steph Curry and Monta Ellis, and Monta has more than 5 years experience

90'sNBARocked
07-25-2011, 06:40 PM
I really fail to see how we have a better young backcourt than Philly. Holiday is already quite a bit better than DC. Therefore George has to be a lot than Evan Turner which is a pretty tall order.

Sent from my DROID2 using Tapatalk

Fair point, but if you went strickly by their play last year, I believe PG ahs looked better than Evan Turner so far

A.B.Hollywood
07-25-2011, 06:53 PM
Ty Lawson and Wilson Chandler are incorrectly getting no love.

ballism
07-25-2011, 06:53 PM
The criteria was "under 5 years experience" and to be fair Golden States' current backcourt is Steph Curry and Monta Ellis, and Monta has more than 5 years experience

Go through the list, your logic clearly does not apply for more than half of the listed duos. Many of these guys aren't starters.

PS: Stephen Curry has been in the league for 2 years and Klay Thompson is the guy they drafted this summer, just to make sure we understand each other.

xBulletproof
07-25-2011, 07:39 PM
Ty Lawson and Wilson Chandler are incorrectly getting no love.

Chandler will be a free agent whenever this lockout thing is over. Probably has a bit to do with that.

90'sNBARocked
07-25-2011, 07:42 PM
Go through the list, your logic clearly does not apply for more than half of the listed duos. Many of these guys aren't starters.

PS: Stephen Curry has been in the league for 2 years and Klay Thompson is the guy they drafted this summer, just to make sure we understand each other.

apparently we dont

Klay Thompson, I highly doubt will start over Monta Ellis

The article I posted, not wrote personally

no problem though

ballism
07-25-2011, 07:54 PM
apparently we dont

Klay Thompson, I highly doubt will start over Monta Ellis

The article I posted, not wrote personally

no problem though

You aren't disagreeing with me then, you disagree with the whole article. Your criteria is completely different from the guy who wrote this. Check the teams. Many of those guys aren't starters and won't be in the near future.

Dallas (both guys)
Charlotte (Henderson - Magette will probably start for at least 2 more years)
Knicks (Douglas is a backup, Billups is the starter)
Phillie (Iggy is still the starter over Evan Turner, right?)
Raptors (Calderon is still their starter, not Bayless)
Clippers (Bledsoe is the backup, Mo Williams is the starter)
And there's a few more likely backups on the list.

If you follow article's criteria... Curry and Thompson have to be near the top.
If you follow your criteria (only starters)... you got to scratch the whole article.

But in no case you can have that list of 13 teams and not have GSW on it.

Pacergeek
07-25-2011, 09:21 PM
swap DC for Born Ready. Born Ready and George are the future!

Shade
07-26-2011, 05:43 AM
Jerryd Bayless & DeMar DeRozan, Toronto Raptors – Definitely the hardest duo to leave out of the top five, but their untapped potential still outweighs their tapped potential a little too heavily. While Bayless floated around a little bit this early in his career, he seems to have found a home in Toronto, where he'll undoubtedly take the helm whenever Jose Calderon moves on from the team. He and DeRozan, one of the most freakish athletes in the league, are really exciting to watch together, and their collective youth means they'll be together for a while. That's a good thing for the Raptors.

:whistle:

90'sNBARocked
07-26-2011, 08:36 AM
You aren't disagreeing with me then, you disagree with the whole article. Your criteria is completely different from the guy who wrote this. Check the teams. Many of those guys aren't starters and won't be in the near future.

Dallas (both guys)
Charlotte (Henderson - Magette will probably start for at least 2 more years)
Knicks (Douglas is a backup, Billups is the starter)
Phillie (Iggy is still the starter over Evan Turner, right?)
Raptors (Calderon is still their starter, not Bayless)
Clippers (Bledsoe is the backup, Mo Williams is the starter)
And there's a few more likely backups on the list.

If you follow article's criteria... Curry and Thompson have to be near the top.
If you follow your criteria (only starters)... you got to scratch the whole article.

But in no case you can have that list of 13 teams and not have GSW on it.

you make good points, and I see what you are saying. The writer apparently thinks Iggy will be traded and thus Turner will start

You seem really high on Klay Thompson, did you watch him play a lot or do you also follow the Warriors?

ballism
07-26-2011, 09:27 AM
You seem really high on Klay Thompson, did you watch him play a lot or do you also follow the Warriors?

It's about Curry.
If they didn't draft Klay, I'd talk about a Stephen Curry / Jeremy Lin backcourt or whatever.
Anything Klay does is bonus. Although I do think Klay will be a better player than Bledsoe or Bayless when it's all said and done. But that's beside the point.

I'd take Curry alone over most backcourts on that list - every "honorable mention" pair to be precise, except maybe Holiday/Turner. And if a deal of Collison/PG for Curry came up, I'd have a very hard time refusing it. Curry is already a Granger level player with considerable upside while George has a chance to be.

By the way, Raymond Felton was in the league for 6 years. I didn't bother to check last night as I thought the writer did his due diligence on this. Seems not. :)
How much do they get payed for these articles, I wonder...

OakMoses
07-26-2011, 09:34 AM
It's about Curry.
If they didn't draft Klay, I'd talk about a Stephen Curry / Jeremy Lin backcourt or whatever.

You could say the same thing about D. Rose. He hasn't been in the league 5 years.

ballism
07-26-2011, 10:26 AM
You could say the same thing about D. Rose. He hasn't been in the league 5 years.

But who would you put next to him that has under 5 years of XP? CJ Watson? Makes no sense.

Roaming Gnome
07-26-2011, 10:49 AM
:whistle:

"Hey Shade, Didn't you hear that we got Jerryd Bayless back in a trade?"
-Draft Party, 2009

:eyebrow: :D :rotflmao: :runout:

OakMoses
07-26-2011, 12:53 PM
But who would you put next to him that has under 5 years of XP? CJ Watson? Makes no sense.

Hell, put Taj Gibson next to him. D. Rose and Gibson would be the 2nd best backcourt on that list.

ballism
07-26-2011, 01:04 PM
Hell, put Taj Gibson next to him. D. Rose and Gibson would be the 2nd best backcourt on that list.

This is a predictions article, not sci-fi. Gibson will never play in the backcourt.
While Klay Thompson will.

OakMoses
07-26-2011, 01:53 PM
This is a predictions article, not sci-fi. Gibson will never play in the backcourt.
While Klay Thompson will.

I agree with you completely about Curry/Thompson.

I'm just saying that it's ridiculous to list the top 5 young backcourts without listing the best young guard in the NBA.

90'sNBARocked
07-26-2011, 01:58 PM
I agree with you completely about Curry/Thompson.

I'm just saying that it's ridiculous to list the top 5 young backcourts without listing the best young guard in the NBA.

Because Bogans is that bad maybe?
Ironically I think the Bulls should have went after George Hill HARD. He would have made a perfect match to D Rose as he can play the two, is a good shooter, gets to the rim, and can also bring up the ball and initiate the offense and back up PG

ballism
07-26-2011, 01:59 PM
Yes, I guess he could've just put a "Rose + a chair" somewhere.

ballism
07-26-2011, 02:02 PM
Because Bogans is that bad maybe?

Bogans is a vet. If any of Bogans / Brewer / Corver / Butler fit the "5 years or under" rule, there'd be no excuse whatsoever for keeping Rose out.

*edit* I had completely forgotten about Brewer, he actually has exactly 5 years of xp.
So yes, Rose should be on the list.

90'sNBARocked
07-26-2011, 03:05 PM
Bogans is a vet. If any of Bogans / Brewer / Corver / Butler fit the "5 years or under" rule, there'd be no excuse whatsoever for keeping Rose out.

*edit* I had completely forgotten about Brewer, he actually has exactly 5 years of xp.
So yes, Rose should be on the list.

yeah word in Chitown is Brewer will start next year unless they upgrade the SG

daschysta
07-26-2011, 04:44 PM
It's about Curry.
If they didn't draft Klay, I'd talk about a Stephen Curry / Jeremy Lin backcourt or whatever.
Anything Klay does is bonus. Although I do think Klay will be a better player than Bledsoe or Bayless when it's all said and done. But that's beside the point.

I'd take Curry alone over most backcourts on that list - every "honorable mention" pair to be precise, except maybe Holiday/Turner. And if a deal of Collison/PG for Curry came up, I'd have a very hard time refusing it. Curry is already a Granger level player with considerable upside while George has a chance to be.

By the way, Raymond Felton was in the league for 6 years. I didn't bother to check last night as I thought the writer did his due diligence on this. Seems not. :)
How much do they get payed for these articles, I wonder...

I'm not sure that you aren't overrating curry a bit when stating that he's already as good as granger and has the potential to get much better. I know alot of Golden State fans prefer ellis to curry, and would prefer to move the latter. Furthermore he benefits as much as anyone in the league from the system that he's been a part of in Golden State, and he's just as much, if not more of a defensive liability than Collison is.

He's an incredible shooter, and a decent passer and a valuable part of any team, but a player that is already as good as granger and could get much better is someone on the path to be a top tier superstar, and I don't see that out of Curry, and certainly don't see it outside of golden states offense, one that gives incredible freedom to the members of the backcourt and plays at a breakneck pace.

I certainly wouldn't trade both DC AND PG for him, he's not so much better than DC that it validates the trade, even if PG doesn't reach quite the lofty expectations that some have of him here. He also isn't as good as rose to the point where he justifies a top slot on a list like this just by himself regardless of who plays beside him. Rose and crap deserves a top 3 slot though. Felton and Mathews should probably be behind bledsoe and gordon, as well as young and wall. 4 is a good slot for them right now, but honestly felton is very overrated after his stint in New York, he won't look so good under macmillan, solid, but not nearly an all-star like in new york, D'antoni's system inflates point guards numbers to ungodly proportions, NASH is just that good independent of D'antoni, but Duhon? Felton? Douglas? Not so much. The list is putting alot of faith in the fact that DC bounces back (I think he does, he looked awesome in the PO's before getting hurt and we know what he can do based on his stint in NO) and Paul George's potential. If both blossom they can easily justify this selection and be one of the better backcourts in the league, I just wish DC was tall enough to guard some shooting guards, since PG is very capable of covering the tough 1 assignments.

ballism
07-26-2011, 05:32 PM
I'm not sure that you aren't overrating curry a bit when stating that he's already as good as granger and has the potential to get much better. I know alot of Golden State fans prefer ellis to curry, and would prefer to move the latter. Furthermore he benefits as much as anyone in the league from the system that he's been a part of in Golden State, and he's just as much, if not more of a defensive liability than Collison is.

He's an incredible shooter, and a decent passer and a valuable part of any team, but a player that is already as good as granger and could get much better is someone on the path to be a top tier superstar, and I don't see that out of Curry, and certainly don't see it outside of golden states offense, one that gives incredible freedom to the members of the backcourt and plays at a breakneck pace.

I certainly wouldn't trade both DC AND PG for him, he's not so much better than DC that it validates the trade, even if PG doesn't reach quite the lofty expectations that some have of him here. He also isn't as good as rose to the point where he justifies a top slot on a list like this just by himself regardless of who plays beside him. Rose and crap deserves a top 3 slot though. Felton and Mathews should probably be behind bledsoe and gordon, as well as young and wall. 4 is a good slot for them right now, but honestly felton is very overrated after his stint in New York, he won't look so good under macmillan, solid, but not nearly an all-star like in new york, D'antoni's system inflates point guards numbers to ungodly proportions, NASH is just that good independent of D'antoni, but Duhon? Felton? Douglas? Not so much. The list is putting alot of faith in the fact that DC bounces back (I think he does, he looked awesome in the PO's before getting hurt and we know what he can do based on his stint in NO) and Paul George's potential. If both blossom they can easily justify this selection and be one of the better backcourts in the league, I just wish DC was tall enough to guard some shooting guards, since PG is very capable of covering the tough 1 assignments.

I don't think I'm overrating Curry (and it's been overdiscussed on this forum, so I'd rather not go into it again), but either way you want to look at it, Curry and Thompson have to be on that list.

PS: Felton and Matthews shouldn't be on that list at all - again, Felton is a 7th year vet.

daschysta
07-26-2011, 05:34 PM
yeah true on felton, was assuming they did their homework. I guess they didn't, perhaps they mixed him up with lawson?

McKeyFan
07-26-2011, 10:22 PM
Because Bogans is that bad maybe?

Bogans was a primary reason for us not winning a couple more games in that series.

90'sNBARocked
07-27-2011, 08:30 AM
Bogans was a primary reason for us not winning a couple more games in that series.

How so?

billbradley
07-27-2011, 09:04 AM
How so?

? occasional timely three point shooting / defense

90'sNBARocked
07-27-2011, 12:03 PM
? occasional timely three point shooting / defense

Thats more of a stretch than Obrien's PF

:)

BRushWithDeath
07-27-2011, 12:26 PM
Thats more of a stretch than Obrien's PF

:)

Bogans went 3-4 from 3 in game 3 and 5-7 in game 5. Those were pretty damaging. Especially game 3.

Shade
07-27-2011, 01:10 PM
Bogans shot out of his mind in Game 5, but we weren't going to win that game regardless.

The Sleeze
07-27-2011, 02:56 PM
I think the reason you don't see D. Rose on this list is because he is looking at both of the back court players listed as being "promising", not just one of them.

pizza guy
07-27-2011, 03:24 PM
I think the reason you don't see D. Rose on this list is because he is looking at both of the back court players listed as being "promising", not just one of them.

This is probably right. No one else on Chi really has that much "promise" or "potential" outside of Rose, who is already a superstar, so how much more "promise" does he have yet to realize?

Nice to see our guys getting the love. I won't balk at that.

ballism
07-27-2011, 03:29 PM
I think the reason you don't see D. Rose on this list is because he is looking at both of the back court players listed as being "promising", not just one of them.

So he includes a close-to-28 Felton on the list?
I think this should be taken for what it is. A pretty poorely done article. Looking for consistent "reasons" here is a fruitless effort.

It seems the guy himself wasn't completely sure about his own criteria - probably he simply rushed it with a deadline approaching.