Ranking the starting shooting guards in the NBA from the 2013-14 season

Between injuries and limited production, the 2013-14 season was not a great year for the shooting guard. With the best scorer from the 2-spot injured for most of the season, and a 10-time all-star struggled with various nagging injuries a new player emerged as the best shooting guard in the game and it wasn’t even close.  On a local level, even though the Jazz struggled much of the season, they had one of their best outputs from the starter at the 2.

Here is a look at the best season by a shooting guard in 2013-14.

These rankings are based on numerous factors, including advanced stats, to go along with offensive production, defensive ability and value to the team.

30.  Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Detroit Pistons: After being selected with the eighth pick in the draft, Caldwell – Pope started 41 games out of his 80 appearances as a rookie. In just under 20 minutes a night, he averaged 5.9 points on 39.6 percent shooting and 2 rebounds.

29.  Nate Wolters, Milwaukee Bucks: any one of about five guys could have had this spot for the Bucks, but since Wolters started the most games, I gave it to him.  He appeared in 58 games as a rookie, including 31 as a starter for the struggling Bucks. During that time, he averaged 7.2 points, 3.2 assists and 2.6 rebounds while shooting 43.7 percent from the field.

28.  Ben McLemore, Sacramento Kings: after he was taken with the seventh overall pick in the 2014 draft, McLemore earned the starting job for the Kings. He averaged 8.8 points on 37.6 percent shooting from the floor as well as 2.9 rebounds and an assist in 82 games (55 starts).

27.  Iman Shumpert, New York Knicks: Shumpert didn’t look to score much while he was on the floor but is a solid rebounder and on ball defender.  In just under 27 minutes a night, he averaged 6.7 points on 37.8 percent shooting, 4.2 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.2 steals in 74 games (58 starts).

26.  James Anderson, Philadelphia 76ers: Anderson saw minimal minutes over the first four years of his career before earning the starting job with the 76ers and had his most productive season.  He averaged 10.1 points on a career high 43.1 percent shooting, 3.8 rebounds, 1.9 assists and nearly a steal in 80 games (62 starts).

25.  Thabo Sefolosha, Oklahoma City Thunder: Sefolosha is a lock down defender who struggled with his outside shot in 2013-14. In 26 minutes a night, he averaged 6.3 points on 41.5 percent shooting. He also added 3.6 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 1.3 steals in 61 starts.

24.  Courtney Lee, Memphis Grizzlies: following 30 games coming off the bench for the Boston Celtics, Lee was traded to the Grizzlies. In 30 minutes a night for Memphis, he averaged 11 points on 47.6 percent shooting. He also added 2.8 rebounds and 1.7 assists in 49 games (47 starts).

23.  J.J. Redick, Los Angeles Clippers: his position on this list would be much higher if he hadn’t missed most of the season.  The Clippers brought in Redick to space the floor with his outside shooting and while he was healthy, that’s what he did.  He averaged 15.2 points on 39.5 percent shooting from distance and 91.5 percent from the free-throw line.  He also chipped in with 2.2 assists and 2.1 rebounds in 35 games (34 starts).

22.  Randy Foye, Denver Nuggets: Foye spent his first year with the Nuggets as a major 3-point threat and had one of the best years of his career. He averaged 13.2 points on 38 percent shooting from beyond the arc. He also contributed 3.5 assists and 2.9 rebounds in 81 games (78 starts).

21.  Gerald Henderson, Charlotte Bobcats: after being selected with the eighth pick in the draft, Caldwell – Pope started 41 games out of his 80 appearances as a rookie. In just under 20 minutes a night, he averaged 5.9 points on 39.6 percent shooting and 2 rebounds.

20.  Danny Green, San Antonio Spurs: Green is the ideal starting shooting guard for a very deep Spurs team. In less than 25 minutes a night,  he averaged 9.1 points on 41.5 percent 3 point shooting. He also put up 3.4 rebounds, 1.5 assists and a steal in 68 games (59 starts).

19.  Dion Waiters, Cleveland Cavaliers: it was a toss-up as whether this spot belonged to C.J. Miles, Jarrett Jack or Waiters.  Waiters got the nod because he was the most productive and is still on the team.  He finished the season with averages of 15.9 points on 43.3 percent shooting to go along with 3 assists, 2.8 rebounds and just under a steal in 70 games (24 starts).

18.  Kyle Korver, Atlanta Hawks: the oft-travelled outside marksman has proved to be a good fit in Atlanta.  In his second year with the Hawks, he averaged 12 points a night while shooting a league-high 47.2 percent from behind the arc and 92.6 percent from the free-throw line.  Along with His staggering shooting numbers, he also added 4 rebounds, 2.9 assists and a steal in 71 games as a starter.

17.  Jodie Meeks, Los Angeles Lakers: while the absence of Kobe Bryant wasn’t good for the Lakers, it did open up plenty of time for Meeks to shine.  In his second year in Los Angeles, he set career highs in every major statistical category outside of free-throw percentage.  He averaged 15.7 points on 46.3 percent shooting, 2.5 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.4 steals in 77 games (70 starts) to earn himself a big contract in Detroit.

16.  Avery Bradley, Boston Celtics: with the departures of Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett, Bradley took on a whole new role for the Celtics in 2013-14.  No longer just a defensive stopper, he showed that he could thrive on the offensive end of the floor as well.  On the season, he averaged 14.9 points on 43.8 percent shooting, including 39.5 percent from beyond the arc.  He also added 3.8 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.1 steals in 60 games (58 starts) for a rebuilding Boston squad.

15.  Eric Gordon, New Orleans Pelicans: Gordon was relatively healthy for the first time in three seasons in New Orleans and proved to be a solid scorer for the young team.  On the season, he averaged 15.4 points on a career-high 39.1 percent from behind the 3-point line.  He also added 3.3 assists, 2.6 rebounds and 1.2 steals in 64 starts.

14.  Jimmy Butler, Chicago Bulls: Butler showed that he was the perfect fit for the Tom Thibodeau coached Bulls because of his ability to get it done on the defensive side of the floor.  He also had a solid year offensively even though he struggled with his outside shot.  On the season, he averaged 13.1 points, 4.9 rebounds, 2.6 assists and 1.9 steals in 67 starts.

13.  Kevin Martin, Minnesota Timberwolves: in his first season in Minnesota, Martin proved that he still has the knack to be a high level scorer in the NBA.  In 32 minutes a night, he averaged 19 points on 38.7 percent shooting behind the 3-point line and 89.1 percent from the free-throw stripe.  He also chipped in with 3 rebounds, 1.8 assists and a steal in 68 starts.

12.  Gordon Hayward, Utah Jazz: with the arrival of Richard Jefferson, Hayward spent most of the season playing the shooting guard and put up solid all-around totals for the Jazz.  On the season, he averaged 16.2 points on 41.3 percent shooting from the floor and 81.6 percent shooting from the free-throw line.  He also contributed 5.2 assists, 5.1 rebounds and 1.4 steals in 77 starts.

11.  Joe Johnson, Brooklyn Nets: even though his field goal attempts per game were down for the fifth straight season, according to Basketball-reference.com, Johnson made the all-star game for the seventh time in eight seasons.  On the year, he averaged 15.8 points on 40.1 percent shooting from behind the arc.  He also added 3.4 rebounds and 2.7 assists in 79 starts.

10.  Wesley Matthews, Portland Trail Blazers: Matthews has been a perfect fit in the Portland lineup next to Damian Lillard and Nicolas Batum.  He can score from the outside, get to the free-throw line and also play solid defense.  On the season, he averaged a career-high 16.4 points on 39.3 percent from beyond the arc.  He also added 3.5 rebounds, 2.4 assists and just under a steal while starting all 82 games.

9.  Bradley Beal, Washington Wizards: Beal is part of one of the best young back courts in the league with John Wall thanks in part to his ability to stretch the floor for Wall to have open driving lanes.  On the season, he averaged 17.1 points on 40.2 shooting from distance to go along with 3.7 rebounds, 3.3 assists and a steal in 73 starts.

8.  Arron Afflalo, Orlando Magic: even though the Magic struggles, Afflalo had a terrific all-around season.  On the season, he averaged a career-high 18.2 points on 45.9 percent shooting from the floor, including 42.7 percent shooting from behind the arc.  He also contributed 3.6 rebounds and a career-high 3.4 assists in 73 starts.

7.  Eric Bledsoe, Phoenix Suns: Bledsoe would be much higher on the list had he not missed a good chunk of the season because of injury.  Bledsoe is more of a combo guard who can do damage on the bounce even though he is undersized because of his tremendous athleticism.  In his first year with the Suns, he averaged 17.7 points on 47.7 percent shooting from the floor.  He also chipped in with 5.5 assists, 4.7 rebounds and 1.6 steals in 43 games (40 starts).

6.  Klay Thompson, Golden State Warriors: Thompson is one of the best pure shooters in the NBA today and the perfect complement to Steph Curry for the perimeter based Golden State Warriors.  On the season, he averaged a career-high 18.4 points on 41.7 percent shooting from beyond the arc. He also added 3.1 rebounds, 2.2 assists and nearly a steal in 81 starts.

5.  Monta Ellis, Dallas Mavericks: Ellis is an impressive scorer who thrives with the ball in his hands thanks to his ability to get to the rim and creat open shots for his teammates.  In his first year with the Mavericks, he averaged 19 points on 45.1 percent shooting from the floor.  He also chipped in with 5.7 assists, 3.6 rebounds and 1.7 steals in while starting all 82 games.

4.  Lance Stephenson, Indiana Pacers: Stephenson has made great strides since he came into the league following his freshman year at Cincinnati and has turned into one of the premier wing defenders.  With added time and more opportunities, he had his best season of his young career in 2013-14.  On the season, he averaged 13.8 points on 49.1 percent shooting from the floor.  He also added 7.2 rebounds and 4.6 assists in 78 starts.

3.  DeMar DeRozan, Toronto Raptors: DeRozan had the best season of his young career to make his first all-star appearance and help lead the Raptors to the playoffs.  Along the way he put up career highs across the board.  On the season, he averaged 22.7 points on 82.4 percent shooting from the free-throw line.  He also contributed 4.3 rebounds, 4 assists and 1.1 steals in 79 starts.

2.  Dwyane Wade, Miami Heat: Wade isn’t the player he used to be in his younger days, but when his number is called he can still perform at a very high level.  even though he was limited by injuries and played the least minutes per game of any season in the NBA, according to Basketball-reference.com, he had a career year shooting the ball.  On the season, he averaged 19 points on 54.5 percent shooting to go along with 4.7 assists, 4.5 rebounds and 1.5 steals in 54 games.

1.  James Harden, Houston Rockets: Harden has a game that is more often than not played on the offensive end of the floor. Where he excels the most is getting into the lane and drawing contact thanks to his ability to knock down free-throws at a very high rate.  On the season, he averaged 25.4 points on 45.6 percent shooting from the floor and 86.6 percent from the charity stripe.  He also contributed 6.1 assists, 4.7 rebounds and 1.6 steals in 73 starts to make hs second consecutive all-star game.

 

 

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