Question Of The Day: Who Has The Best Backcourt In The NBA?

Basketball, Ed The Sports Fan — By on July 22, 2012 at 12:05 pm


I was reading an article by Sam Gardner from Fox Sports about the tug-of-war that is about to take place with NYC basketball fans with their longstanding hometown New York Knicks and the new imports from New Jersey in the Brooklyn Nets. In the piece, Gardner points out that The Big Russian (Mikhail Prokhorov) has assembled arguably the best backcourt in the NBA in re-signed point god Deron Williams and recently acquired via trade isolation extraordinaire shooting guard of Joe Johnson.

I literally stopped reading the article.

What? When did the Nets assemble the best backcourt in the NBA? How? Who in the hell do Prokhorov and Jay-Z think they are? What is this?

*scratches head*

*rubs beard*

*taps on the table*

There is no arguably. The Brooklyn Nets have the best backcourt duo in basketball. At least on paper and off of past accomplishments. How will these two look on the court? Who knows. I think people have genuinely forgotten how good Deron Williams is. Kenny will quickly tell you that Deron is the best point guard in the NBA, and this will be the finest collection of talent Deron’s played with since he was hooping in Champaign. Joe Johnson? He’s probably the bigger wildcard here, as isolations have been his forte since he touched base in the ATL. It’s hard to blame him for changing his game in such a way. Who in the hell else was going to be able to get him open for a quality shot?

Removing Kenny’s bias, I’d say you’ve got one of the top three PG’s in the league and one of the top three SG’s in the league in the same starting lineup. Who’s better?

I’ll give you three possibles.


Los Angeles Lakers: Steve Nash and Kobe Bryant

There are still some that are unwilling to give the “Point God” crown to anyone else besides Steve Nash until he retires. Now he joins up with Kobe Bryant to complete the ultimate yin and yang backcourt ever. Will the ultimate distributor comply with The Kobe System? One point here, Nash and Bean’s combined age? 71. (72 in a month when Kobe turns 34 … senior discount at Denny’s, anybody?) Can they keep up with the young guns? Can Nash even defend a lawn chair anymore? Did Kobe ever get that underbite fixed? Whoops … didn’t mean to type that. Moving on.

Oklahoma City Thunder: Russell Westbrook and James Harden

An All-NBA second teamer and the reigning Sixth Man of the Year on the same squad is nothing to scoff at. If this backcourt is good enough to represent the USA in the 2012 Olympics, then they’ve got to be the best backcourt in the league, right? As much of a homer as I am to #ThunderUp, #0appreciation and #FearTheBeard, these dudes are only a combined 45 years old. I know age isn’t really a factor in this debate, but comparing these two to the Lake Show’s backcourt is fascinating. Westbrook is quite possible the king of “making stuff happen” (h/t to Ziller) but still has a ton of room to grow as a point guard. Harden, well the man doesn’t even start, so does OKC fail to even qualify for this discussion?



San Antonio Spurs: Tony Parker and Manu Ginobili

This duo’s won a combined three rings together in San Antonio, and although Ginobili shifts from the bench to the starting lineup like Rihanna switches up on cuddle buddies (Hi ,Rihanna) they’ve become the gold standard in winning. Parker’s evolution from just being a speed demon to an all-around stud has been astounding. Ginobili’s sneaky brilliance has been underappreciated for far too long. There’s really nothing these two can’t do, but the only knock is that from a size and athleticism standpoint they lack in ways the other three do not.

So what’s the answer to the question of the day? Who’s got the best backcourt duo in the league? Let the debate begin in the comments section.

E. Maisonet, III

Eddie Maisonet is an appreciator of the ultimate reality show that is sports.

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    13 Comments

  • JAG says:

    Interesting. I didn’t realize the dearth of great guard tandems in todays NBA. The salary cap forces teams to build with a guard/ big man or guard and two big men. Very few teams have two all star caliber guards anymore, including top teams like Miami and Chicago.

    Two great guards working together really opens up the floor is a joy to watch. Clyde and Pearl, Ainge and DJ, Magic and Scott, Porter and Clyde, Isiah and Dumars, man, those were the days.

  • Joesimtre says:

    Well when we just look at the numbers it looks like Monte Ellis and Brandon Jennings may be the best scoring duo. Ellis @ 20.4 and Jennings @ 19.1. With Deron and Joe Johnson finishing 2nd.

    • With all due respect to Monta and BJennings (whom both I like) I’m not even recognizing them as a great backcourt duo unless they do something worth a damn.

      -Ed.

      • Aaron Smarter says:

        Well, BJ donated a brand new basketball court to his hometown…

        … but I’m pretty sure that’s not what you meant.

        It’s a nice court tho. Runs are serious up there.

  • JAG says:

    You won’t recognize Monta and Jennings because they haven’t done anything? Well, what have Deron and Joe Johnson done?

    • Joesimtre says:

      BINGO… I will answer that.. Not a bleeping thing

      • Kenny says:

        Joe Johnson: perennial All-Star, perennial playoff participant.
        Deron Williams: perennial All-Star, perennial playoff participant, gold medalist.

        Monta Ellis: none of the above.
        Brandon Jennings: none of the above.

        • JAG says:

          I’ll concede that they have the better resume, but we still haven’t seen how they’ll play together. Remember Carmelo and Iverson?

        • Joesimtre says:

          All Star games are based on voting and popularity at the position. Deron Williams is good and Joe Johnson is good but Monta and Brandon have better numbers.

          You can throw the old numbers don’t matter philosophy out there but if they didn’t matter we wouldn’t be taking stats.

          I could legitimately say that Chauncey Billups and Chris Paul are better than any of the guys but the numbers don’t say that they are.

  • and really you cant list Nash/Kobe YET because we dont know how the chemistry will be.

    well i will have to have one question answered before I can give my answer. Are we basing the tandem on the structured position the guys play or by their style of play. If you are going by style of play you have to go with Lebron & Wade. Yes Lebron is a SF but he handles the ball so much and is arguably the best distributor on his team so he is the de facto point guard.

    but if you are basing it off the traditional sense of who is listed as the PG and SG I have to say Manu and TP that duo is the ONLY one you have listed to win a ‘chip and with the decline of Duncan the success of that team goes directly through those two

  • and really you cant list Nash/Kobe YET because we dont know how the chemistry will be.

    well i will have to have one question answered before I can give my answer. Are we basing the tandem on the structured position the guys play or by their style of play. If you are going by style of play you have to go with Lebron & Wade. Yes Lebron is a SF but he handles the ball so much and is arguably the best distributor on his team so he is the de facto point guard.

    but if you are basing it off the traditional sense of who is listed as the PG and SG I have to say Manu and TP that duo is the ONLY one you have listed to win a ‘chip and with the decline of Duncan the success of that team goes directly through those two

  • Aaron Smarter says:

    Eduardo. You have broken my trust, good sir.

    You know good and well that any “best backcourt” list that does not include any backcourt including Chris Paul (no matter who his partner is) is automatically invalid.

    I hope he reads this list. I hope he gets mad. I know he proves y’all wrong. See ya in September.

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