INSIDER: Projecting Top 10 PGs for 2013-14

Clippers TopBuzz Forum/Message Board » Clippers News & General Discussions
Post new topic   Reply to topic
Author Search This Topic:
 
FightOnRon
CTB MVP X1
 Avatar
Posts: 4674
Location: The Darkside
us.gif
votes: 37

As we enter the dog days of the summer -- always a calm time in the NBA -- there are a few notable free agents still out there (Greg Oden, Mo Williams and DeJuan Blair come to mind). For the most part, though, we've got a pretty firm idea what the rosters are going to look like when the 2013-14 season tips off on Oct. 29. As the depth charts have filled, so have the forecasts generated by ATH coalesced. ATH is the projection module of NBAPET, my system of integrated spreadsheets for tracking, evaluating and forecasting all things NBA.

With the pieces falling into place, let's take an early stab at ranking players by position, beginning today with point guards. (Although keep in mind that assigning a primary position to a player in today's NBA is often more art than science.) Over the next two weeks, we'll rank players by position according to ATH's forecasted WARP, or wins above replacement level. WARP is perfect for this kind of exercise because it accounts for a player's efficiency, volume of production and team context.

Here are the projected top 10 point guards for the 2013-14 NBA season followed by the next five and an overview of how some notable PGs fell outside the top 10.

Paul

  1. Chris Paul, Los Angeles Clippers

Projected 2013-14 WARP: 15.9

This might be the Year of Chris Paul, if the Miami Heat falter a bit in the regular season or MVP voters grow tired of rubber-stamping LeBron James' name at the top of their ballots. With the Clippers poised to build upon last year's breakout season and challenge for the top seed in the West, it could come down to a Paul versus Kevin Durant battle for the coveted Maurice Podoloff Trophy. Paul has finished in the top five of the voting four times and as high as second. Although ATH sees a near replica of Paul's 2012-13 WARP, it's still a figure that will garner lots of MVP chatter.

And why wouldn't ATH see Paul churning out the same season? At 29, he's squarely in his prime and his individual winning percentages the past two seasons (.740 and .739) nicely illustrate just how consistent he is. Paul doesn't use as many possessions as he did in his top seasons in New Orleans, but every other facet of his game has remained intact. Last season, Paul shot a career-low 32.8 percent from 3-point range, although he offset that by doing more damage inside the arc. He has shot as high as 40.9 percent from deep in his career, and, if he has a fluky good-shooting campaign, it could put him over a .600 true shooting percentage for the first time in his career. In fact, ATH sees a regression in the 3-point rate, bringing Paul up to a .600 TS% on the nose. With so many weapons around him -- Blake Griffin, Jamal Crawford, Jared Dudley, J.J. Redick, Matt Barnes, Reggie Bullock -- it will be up to Paul to orchestrate the most high-powered offensive attack he's been a part of to date.

Westbrook

  1. Russell Westbrook, Oklahoma City Thunder

Projected 2013-14 WARP: 11.7

By the time the MVP voting results were released during the playoffs, Westbrook had been knocked out by a knee injury, and, unfortunately, that's probably what we will remember most from his 2012-13 season. Overlooked at the time was the fact that Westbrook finished ninth in the voting despite ranking third in WARP. Although Westbrook's value to the Thunder was apparently overlooked when the ballots were completed, it was abundantly clear when he was absent in the postseason. ATH isn't forecasting a decline for Westbrook this season as much as a regression, and the distinction is important. Regression, in a statistical context, simply means moving toward average. It can be a positive or negative effect, yet many people take the term as a pejorative.

Westbrook took a huge leap last season, and, like Derrick Rose in 2011-12, he's likely to come back to earth just a little bit. ATH sees Westbrook maintaining his roughly 33 percent usage rate of the past two seasons. Given some possible shortages on the Oklahoma City bench, it could climb even higher depending on how many of his minutes come with Kevin Durant off the floor. If so, Westbrook's tepid efficiency could slide into the danger area.

Irving

  1. Kyrie Irving, Cleveland Cavaliers

Projected 2013-14 WARP: 11.4

On a per-possession basis, ATH sees Irving bypassing Westbrook as the second-best point guard in the NBA. In general, NBA players experience the most growth in their early 20s, and Irving will be barely 22 by the time the 2013-14 postseason rolls around. His revamped Cavaliers might well be a part of the proceedings. ATH sees a growth in Irving's efficiency inside and outside the arc, resulting in a soaring true shooting percentage of .574. That's all while using the same portion of Cleveland's offense as the other young Cavaliers grow around him. The three-win leap in WARP is doable, but it certainly would help if Irving can make it through a season healthy. After two seasons, his career high in games played is just 59.

Curry

  1. Stephen Curry, Golden State Warriors

Projected 2013-14 WARP: 10.7

Curry jumped from 4.7 WARP to 15.8 last season, but of course his health was the driving force in that quantum leap. Curry's winning percentage the past two seasons has been virtually identical: .665 and .669. He'll turn 26 this year, so chances are he has established his level of play, giving him a lower ceiling than someone like Irving. However, that level of play is still really impressive. You can set your watch by Curry's 3-point shooting, but last year he actually shot worse inside the arc than outside it. ATH sees a regression in the right direction in that regard, but a concurrent one in the wrong direction in Curry's turnover rate. If Curry can continue his improvement in ball protection, his bottom-line value will rival that of the non-Paul class of point guards.

Williams

  1. Deron Williams, Brooklyn Nets

Projected 2013-14 WARP: 9.9

With the change in talent around him, Williams will be one of the most intriguing players to watch in the coming season. In his best years in Utah, Williams was an assist machine, but, as a Net, he initially took on a heavy scoring load and his efficiency dropped off the map. Last season, with Brooklyn's roster improved, Williams' usage rate returned to previous levels, and his shooting percentages recovered accordingly. However, his assist rate was his lowest since his rookie season. Williams' turnovers also were down, so he simply had the ball less. With so much talent and so many alpha personalities on the new Nets, Williams can either be more of a cog in the machine or he can become its operator. Given the on-court proclivities of his new coach, Jason Kidd, I'm going to guess it's going to be the latter. If Williams can return to his days of double-digit assists, it will be a sign the new mix in Brooklyn is working.

Conley

  1. Mike Conley, Memphis Grizzlies

Projected 2013-14 WARP: 8.5

ATH sees Conley's 2012-13 season as a career campaign, but he's not likely to regress much. The biggest uptick in his game last year was shot selection, with a 5 percent increase in the portion of his possessions that ended with a 3-point attempt. That kind of wisdom, once gained, is not easily lost.

Rose

  1. Derrick Rose, Chicago Bulls

Projected 2013-14 WARP: 8.3

Forecasting games played always is tough, and the formula for doing so leaves Rose with just 61 games in his projection. That's what happens when a guy misses 109 regular-season games over two seasons. His winning percentage is tabbed at .607, down from the .679 he put up in his MVP season of 2010-11. ATH, like the rest of us, believes Rose has plenty to prove in the coming season.

Lowry

  1. Kyle Lowry, Toronto Raptors

Projected 2013-14 WARP: 8.1

Lowry has put up right around 8.0 WARP in each of the past three seasons. He's in his prime and remains underrated. Could some younger guards behind Lowry climb over him on the value ladder? Sure. There are a number of point guards with higher ceilings, but few who have demonstrated such a consistent level of play.

Lawson

  1. Ty Lawson, Denver Nuggets

Projected 2013-14 WARP: 8.1

Lawson is a classic example of the usage/efficiency nexus. His usage rate has increased in every season of his career, and his true shooting percentage has declined. Just as important, though, his assist rate has steadily climbed even as his turnover rate has dropped. This season, ATH sees all those various elements coming together as Lawson steps into his prime.

Lillard

  1. Damian Lillard, Portland Trail Blazers

Projected 2013-14 WARP: 7.8

There is a school of thought that Lillard entered the NBA fully formed and that, as outstanding as he was in his rookie of the year campaign, Lillard is as good now as he's ever going to be. This is the season we begin to find out whether that's true. ATH projects that Lillard will take a significant step forward, with progress in shot selection and especially on the defensive end.

The next five: Kemba Walker, John Wall, Tony Parker, Jose Calderon, Ricky Rubio.

It's a point guard league right now, so there are some big names that slip outside the top 10. Rubio, who ranks 15th at 6.5 WARP, would rate as the No. 6 shooting guard, for example. So these are actually solid ratings for the up-and-coming Walker and Wall, even though they are both dinged for a combination of high usage rates and low shooting percentages.

Parker's standing represents a slip, but he'll turn 32 during the playoffs next season. That's a rough age for a guard historically speaking, and Parker's forecast sees a regression to what he was before his spike the past two seasons. He's still at 7.1 WARP, which put him in the top 10 of every other position except power forward.

Also: Rajon Rondo's existing injury limits his forecast to 48 games and a 4.7 WARP. It's an uncertain process with guys coming off serious injuries, but the one-year anniversary of his knee surgery isn't until Feb. 12. With a full projection of games played, Rondo's winning percentage would have landed him between Lawson and Lillard in the rankings.

http://insider.espn.go.com/nba/story/_/ ... rp-2013-14

CapsNClips
CTB MVP X1
Posts: 3944

us.gif
votes: 42

I strangely agree with this list, except the part about Tony not being top 10. Conley will be an All-star next year. Westbrook is the closest player to Chris IMO.

Obviously I'd love to see Bledsoe crack the top 10, but I think he needs a year or two to understand how to lead a team.

Amnesty_David_Stern
Clipper All-Star
Posts: 2333
votes: 7

Bledsoe won't crack the top 10 unless he posts identical or better numbers he had when he started last season, AND the Suns don't tank. Bledsoe will be a top pick for my fantasy team this year, round 3 or 4 in a big money league 14 teams for the win. Blocks at the PG spot are priceless.

ihave6rolls
Clipper D-League Pickup
Posts: 5
votes: 0

Agree with this article. I think Tony Parker should be in the Top 10, not Top 5 however. I am curious to see where this guy ranks Blake once he goes through all of the power forwards. Also would not be shocked if this guy puts DJ pretty high up there for centers. I know people criticize DJ all the time but I expect big things from him this year, especially given the fact that Doc trusts DJ and plans on using him to his strengths. This should be one exciting year!

Amnesty_David_Stern
Clipper All-Star
Posts: 2333
votes: 7

T Parker is top 5 no question sons. You = my sons.

FreaKeyy
Clipper All-Star
Posts: 1996
Location: LA
votes: 16

Really no TP? wow... can't wait for Jarca to see this. I remember he kept insisting Tony Parker is better than Chris Paul.

jarca
CTB MVP X2
Posts: 7963

rp.gif
votes: 35

Small market team, foreigner, unmarketable, no endorsement deal etc etc. he's been underrated his entire career. What else is new

Agent0
CTB MVP X1
Posts: 4032
votes: 37

The author is predicting a decline for Parker, but I disagree he will decline out of the top 10. Still, he had reasonings for his choices, so that's good, but this is ranking based on wins above replacement level, not necessarily who's better or best.

Silasie
Clipper All-Star
Posts: 1976

uk.gif
votes: 2

http://www.hoopsworld.com/top-6-2013-20 ... int-guards

Hoopsworld have done a similar thing but have the top 6 pg's.

1) CP3

2) Parker

3) Rose

4) WB

5) Irving

6) Curry

Which is closer to my order.

CP3Heliflopter
CTB MVP X2
Posts: 5986
votes: 10

1) Cp3

2) WB

3) Parker

4) Rose

5) Curry

6) Irving

Still think Irving is incredibly overrated. He is really really bad on defense. Not that Parker and Rose are good defensively either but he is way worse than even them.

Love watching him offensively but watching him on D not so much. Also needs to improve A LOT in terms of his playmaking.

FightOnRon
CTB MVP X1
Posts: 4674
Location: The Darkside
us.gif
votes: 37

Author probably lost money in the Finals so this is a payback of a sort.

CP3Heliflopter
CTB MVP X2
Posts: 5986
votes: 10

^He was absolutely atrocious in the Finals. 15.7/2/6.4/1 on 41% FG 28% from 3 and 73% from the line....

The Spurs would have won game 6 if he wasn't complete garbage going 6/23 and getting torched by Mario Chalmers.

Its nice being able to play on a stacked team your whole career and never getting blamed if you crap the bed but yes he is very "underrated". Even though people were calling him best PG last season and saying he should get the MVP over Lebron before he was injured. Ridiculous.

Flushyriver
Clipper Starter
Posts: 287

us.gif
votes: 1

Rose is insanely good when he does get on the court. In a world in that it's a known certainty that Rose comes back for a full season, I gotta think it'd be closer than this projected separation? Atleast between him and Westbrook if not CP3. There's so many great point guards now though. You can really take your pick, these are mine...

  1. CP3

  2. Westbrook

  3. Rose

  4. Curry

  5. Irving

  6. Parker

  7. Williams

  8. Wall

  9. Conley

  10. Lawson

Hooligans
Clipper 6th Man
 Avatar
Posts: 217
votes: 3

Cherry picking at its finest.

Parker WAS playing at an MVP level all season long and did play well in the playoffs, sans the finals. But Lebron is the best player in the league for a reason, tough to play well with a 6'8 athletic marvel on you. Even Chris was shut down by him.

Anybody that short is gonna have issues with that much length.

Just because people like Barkley and Bayless love to jump on bandwagons doesn't mean a player has accomplished less. He's already one a few rings (+ finals MVP), maybe with "stacked" teams but since when do shitty teams win championships?

But let's keep making exaggerations out of spite!

CapsNClips
CTB MVP X1
Posts: 3944

us.gif
votes: 42

Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook & Derrick Rose when he's healthy are the only Elite PG's in the league. The rest of them like Stephen Curry, Kyrie Irving and Deron Williams are star PG's, for them to reach Elite level IMO they have do more than just put up great numbers, they have to will their team to wins on a nightly basis and I see CP, RW & Rose do that every single night even though Westbrook takes far too many shots he still knows how to take over on any given night unlike Curry and Irving who take over every other night.

I can't wait for Rose to come back, he's by far the most exciting non-Clipper player to watch.

Agent0
CTB MVP X1
Posts: 4032
votes: 37

I'm not sure if we can make an argument that guys like Curry, Parker. Irving and Williams don't "will their teams to victory" on a nightly basis. I think all these guys do a good job of accomplishing that.

austin009009
Clipper Starter
Posts: 283
votes: 0

Rose will probably play more than 60 games, so i could easily see if going to the top 3

CapsNClips
CTB MVP X1
Posts: 3944

us.gif
votes: 42

There were a ton of games I saw last season where Curry and Williams(especially Williams) seemed to be doing the bare minimum and just playing through their teammates. Notice how I didn't put Parker in this category, that's because he does do everything he can to win but I don't think he's an Elite PG for other reasons most notably his defense.

I can't really judge Irving too much just yet because he's missed a ton of games. He's an incredible scorer, but I'm not excited at all about his facilitating, BBall I.Q. and Ast/TO ratio.

clipperstown
CTB MVP X3
Posts: 11295
Location: Glendale, CA
am.gif
votes: 24

why is parker not in the top 10? SMH. I'm one that has always said that Paul is better than Parker, but damn this is just terrible. out of the top 10? really?

TheDude
CTB MVP X1
Posts: 2679

wz.gif
votes: 31

Love that CP3 got that respect although it's a bit surprising. TP was the best PG last season and he's not even on the list. Pretty strange. I guess it's a projection but still how is he supposed to get that bad that he's considering an average starting PG in this league by next year.

DRose is pretty low too.

Lowry, Lawson and a rookie are ranked ahead of TP, Wall and Rubio. Conley ahead of Rose. A lot of weird choices after 123.

Voyeur
CTB MVP X2
Posts: 5129
votes: 29

TP was NOT the best PG in the league last year. The dude plays for the best coach in the league and a system that's taken TP years to perfect...and he still doesn't average 8 assists a game. For a quick little guard, he didn't even average a steal a game. Our power forward averaged more steals than TP this past year.

The Spurs system may run better with Parker at PG because of his experience in that system, but it's a system that can win without Parker. I don't think Parker is the kinda guy who can join ANY team and average 8-10 assists a game like Paul can or, I suspect, Rondo.

Having said that, he should be on the list.

Agent0
CTB MVP X1
Posts: 4032
votes: 37

I think all these guys have games where they don't show up, we know Paul has his passive moments himself. Also Deron was a different player the first half of the season in comparison to the second.

CP3Heliflopter
CTB MVP X2
 Avatar
Posts: 5986
votes: 10

Parker played 60 games last season and he certainly did not have a better RS than Chris. In fact, the Spurs had a similar winning % with him off the court while we played .500 basketball without Cp3.

Nothing I said was exaggerated. Parker gets called underrated so much he gets overrated. He gets plenty of credit. People were calling him the best MVP candidate before injury and the best pg in the league.

As for the playoffs. He played well until the Heat series but players that are called "MVP candidates" and the "best PG in the league" should be held to that standard. He was abysmal in the Finals outside of two games. There is a double standard when it comes to Parker. He gets plenty of credit but rarely gets blamed for his failures.

As for that Finals MVP.... Duncan was the far better and higher impact player in the PS and the RS but Parker won the Finals MVP since he faced a miserable Cavs team and got guarded by the likes of Mo Williams.

http://www.basketball-reference.com/teams/SAS/2007.html

Parker was a distant 3rd best player on the Spurs when he won that Finals MVP. It was a cute pick I give you that but then again you only need to have 4 good games while guarded by Mo Williams to win it.

Heck in the first five games in the Spurs vs Heat series Green looked like he could win the Finals MVP.

I considered Parker the 2nd best PG last season far from "hating". I think he will be around 3-5 next season.

ArmoClipFan
Posts: 189
votes: 0

tp is the second best pg in the world and if you disagree you don't know basketball. period. did u not watch the playoffs last year? this author has no credibility

CP3Heliflopter
CTB MVP X2
Posts: 5986
votes: 10

Period? As in not debatable at all? Last season I would say he was the 2nd best PG but you are saying there is no chance Rose or WB have a better season? Meh. Its silly not to have him on the list though.

Flushyriver
Clipper Starter
Posts: 287

us.gif
votes: 1

Yeah it's a little more tricky than just looking at stats from the last year and ranking them, in which case yeah sure Tony is the second best. But to project going forward just looking at skill sets and talent is a whole other matter. There are a lot of young guns that have A LOT of potential. Still, it can be agreed all around that Parker should have at least made the top 10 if nothing else.

pageC4
CTB MVP X1
Posts: 4510

us.gif
votes: 22

shocking. Especially since he is so loved by most people in NBA circles

namzug
Clipper All-Star
 Avatar
Posts: 1042
Location: So Cal
votes: 10

I can't stand the Tony Parker hype, and think he is overated due to the system he plays in and the players that surround him. With that said, until proven otherwise the guy belongs in the top 5.

Go To the Top of the ThreadGo Home

or Comment Using FB

Post new topic   Reply to topic


← Bought Season Courtside Row A at $700 Per Seat, Worth It?

→ Insider Request: Ranking the West

You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum

register
You are an anonymous user- Register now!


Follow our Los Angeles Clippers RSS Feed, plus the Clippers Rumors RSS Feed, the LA Clippers News RSS feed, and the Clippers Forum RSS feed to get the newest updated Clippers News and Trade Rumors plus Clippers Game update in your RSS/XML reader!