There’s never a night off in the NBA, particular if you’re a point guard, where the gamut can run from one All-Star to another. Even on teams that don’t have superstar guards, you better still bring it. Take Mike Conley for example. He’s a very good player, has been a potential All-Star, and last night in Phoenix, Goran Dragic lit him up for 33 points, seven dimes and three steals.
Or how about the Sacramento Kings? They have Isaiah Thomas, suddenly one of the league’s most productive lead guards — he’s third… third among point guards in PER — and he didn’t even start at the beginning of the season.
The NBA has never had more lead guard talent and the All-Star Game voting will surely leave a few big names watching from home. But today, we’re arguing about Thomas and Dragic. Who would you take right now? We argue. You decide.
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A leagued loaded in stars… the point guard position has elite talent everywhere. Chris Paul, Tony Parker, Stephen Curry and many others have cemented their names as the best point guards in the Association.
With all their glamour, it is only appropriate that some players are left out of the conversation. Being a second-tier player is not a shameful title — players like Goran Dragic and Isaiah Thomas are some of the names filling those spots.
This season, Goran Dragic has been better than Isaiah Thomas, and I am going to explain why.
Both Dragic and Thomas are posting similar stat-lines, so you have to dig a little deeper. Granted, Isaiah Thomas is having a career-season. His play has been absolutely electric for the Sacramento Kings, but as most know, it is a little easier for stats to become inflated when playing on bottom of the barrel teams like Thomas’ Kings.
Goran Dragic has been a constant for the majority of his career. This season, he has been excellent for a young team. Dragic is playing alongside another ball-dominant superstar in the making, Eric Bledsoe. The two combo guards are splitting touches, and doing it quite well — both are having the best years of their careers.
The main takeaway from my brief point about the two guards being similar is that Thomas just bloomed into a serviceable guard. Goran Dragic has been a relevant second-tier guard for sometime now. It is necessary that Thomas is given the proper time to continue to showcase his ability, and prove that he can keep this up for multiple seasons.
An attribute of Dragic’s that I see, that many do not speak of, is his elite toughness. Standing at 6-3 and weighing 190 pounds, many assume Dragic would be a frail guard that lacks the needed physicality and ability to finish around the rim. This is far from the truth; Dragic actually shoots an outstanding 93-for-136 (68 percent) from shots coming at the rim (less than five feet).
Here are some samples of Dragic’s tenacity at the rim.
Summing up my argument… if picking between these players, the best choice is Goran Dragic. He is at the point in his career where he is considered a seasoned veteran. His significance to the Suns organization means more than Thomas does to Sacramento. Phoenix was predicted as a bottom feeder team in a tough and balanced Western Conference. They were slated to struggle to win games and ultimately tank their season to secure a high draft pick in this upcoming star-studded draft. Phoenix has proven all their naysayers wrong, a main reason being the maturity and All-Star caliber play of Goran Dragic. His ability as an efficient, volume scorer and playmaker was never in question. He just needed the proper pieces to complement his ability.
Dragic is proven; Thomas just hit the NBA scene. Productive, veteran leadership is something each team desires, and Goran Dragic can provide exactly that.