Since the early 2010s, the point guard position has been a flux of talent. Once we made it midway through the decade, the position was fairly wrapped up by the greatest offensive point guard we have ever seen. Outside of one triple-double season, which was historic in Russell Westbrook’s own right, Curry has been one of the most dominant players at the position we have ever seen.
We saw the old in Steve Nash to the new in Derrick Rose. We saw a friendly battle between Chris Paul and Tony Parker. We saw Westbrook accomplish something that hadn’t been done since the days of Oscar Robertson. In the end, Curry’s greatness will be talked about forever for what he accomplished.
These are the best point guards since the 2009-2010 season.
Steve Nash - 2010 (Phoenix Suns)
Stats: 16.5 PPG, 3.3 RPG, 11.0 APG, 0.5 SPG, 0.1 BPG
Team Record: 54-28
Team Playoffs: Western Conference Finals (Lakers def. Suns 4-2)
The Suns were managed by Nash, who orchestrated the league’s best offense. The combination of Nash, Shawn Marion, and Amar’e Stoudemire was too difficult for the league to contain. With that said, Nash was the floor general that made it all happen.
If you take Nash out of this lineup, the Suns are half as good. Many thought this was going to be the first championship in franchise history until the team ran into a buzz saw in the Lakers.
Derrick Rose - 2011 (Chicago Bulls)
Stats: 25.0 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 7.7 APG, 1.0 SPG, 0.6 BPG
Team Record: 62-20
Team Playoffs: Eastern Conference Finals (Heat def. Bulls 4-1)
Derrick Rose took over the league. There wasn’t a player that could cut, slash, and finish like Rose. That is precisely why Rose became the youngest MVP in league history at 22 years old. Rose’s highlight tape from this year is mesmerizing.
It kicks you in the feels when you think about what his career could have been had he not been hurt. Had Rose never been hurt, we would have seen him on this list more frequently and the Bulls might have won their first championship since Michael Jordan.
Chris Paul - 2012 (Los Angeles Clippers)
Stats: 19.8 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 9.1 APG, 2.5 SPG, 0.1 BPG
Team Record: 40-26
Team Playoffs: Second Round (Spurs def. Clippers 4-0)
The first year of “Lob City” was the first year the Clippers were relevant in basketball in years. Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan were both powerful dunkers. Paul amplified both of their careers with his presence.
If you weren’t ready, there was a chance that you would be put on a poster. This was just the start of the rise of this core though. Despite never making an NBA Finals with this team, Paul took a doormat franchise and helped make the team relevant among the league ranks.
Tony Parker - 2013 (San Antonio Spurs)
Stats: 20.3 PPG, 3.0 RPG, 7.6 APG, 0.8 SPG, 0.1 BPG
Team Record: 58-24
Team Playoffs: NBA Finals (Heat def. Spurs 4-3)
Parker secured his first triple-double in 800 plus games this season, but that wasn’t the only reason he stood out. From start to finish, Parker helped the Spurs make it to the NBA Finals, where the team nearly pulled out the series before Game 6 heroics from Ray Allen.
When it comes to efficiency, Parker was one of the best and stood above the rest. He led the team in points and was nearly more efficient than Tim Duncan. Parker carried the load offensively this year and helped the team win another championship.
Chris Paul - 2014 (Los Angeles Clippers)
Stats: 19.1 PPG, 4.3 RPG, 10.7 APG, 2.5 SPG, 0.1 BPG
Team Record: 57-25
Team Playoffs: Second Round (Thunder def. Clippers 4-2)
Not only was Blake Griffin an All-Star and Second-Team selection, but DeAndre Jordan led the league in rebounding. There’s an effect that Paul has on players, but once again, Paul was the maestro. The Clippers set a franchise record for wins.
A lot of that had to do with Paul leading the way as he led the league in both assists and steals, making him the best two-way guard in the league. By the end of his tenure in Los Angeles, he was the franchise leader in both assists and steals.
Steph Curry - 2015 (Golden State Warriors)
Stats: 23.8 PPG, 4.3 RPG, 7.7 APG, 2.0 SPG, 0.2 BPG
Team Record: 67-15
Team Playoffs: NBA Champions (Warriors def. Cavaliers 4-2)
How can you go against the MVP? Curry was awarded the MVP trophy after leading the Warriors to an NBA championship. Curry’s numbers in scoring are down to other years in his career, but his outside shooting and playmaking stood above the rest. Also, the team was one of the best defensive teams too with Curry as a part of that rotation.
While his stats don’t necessarily pop out in comparison to the year’s past, Curry was the MVP. The Warriors made a massive jump in the rankings and won their first title in ages. How much of that had to do with Steve Kerr’s influence? That remains to be unseen, but nobody can ever take away the fact that Curry never joined a superteam and his core of drafted players accomplished the greatest thing you can do in the league.
Steph Curry - 2016 (Golden State Warriors)
Stats: 30.1 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 6.7 APG, 2.1 SPG, 0.2 BPG
Team Record: 73-9
Team Playoffs: NBA Finals (Cavaliers def. Warriors 4-3)
Same question as before, how can you go against the MVP? Speaking of which, Curry was the first-ever unanimous MVP. That’s right. Not even Michael Jordan can walk away with that title. The Warriors won an NBA-record 73 games this season, but couldn’t close out the Cavaliers in the NBA Finals despite owning a 3-1 series lead.
The end of this season will always come back to haunt Curry in the end. Many want to put an asterisk next to this season when the greatest season in NBA history is discussed. Regardless, the team set the record and went to a seven-game series. That is as close as it gets in the end, but in the regular season, the Warriors were the ones in the end that won 73 games.
Russell Westbrook - 2017 (Oklahoma City Thunder)
Stats: 31.6 PPG, 10.7 RPG, 10.4 APG, 1.6 SPG, 0.4 BPG
Team Record: 47-35
Team Playoffs: First Round (Rockets def. Thunder 4-1)
Forget about the postseason results. This was the first year that Russell Westbrook played without Kevin Durant. His response? He averaged the first triple-double since Oscar Robertson in 1961 and willed the Thunder to a first-round playoff appearance. Westbrook was named MVP after his historic season.
What makes this season even more impressive is how Westbrook carried himself. You saw a player transform into someone with a massive chip on his shoulder. Even though Westbrook has always been that player, he had something to prove when Durant left. Even though Durant won Finals MVP, Westbrook showed he was just as important to that OKC franchise as he was.
Steph Curry - 2018 (Golden State Warriors)
Stats: 26.4 PPG, 5.1 RPG, 6.1 APG, 1.6 SPG, 0.2 BPG
Team Record: 56-26
Team Playoffs: NBA Champions (Warriors def. Cavaliers 4-0)
While Curry was just one of several talented pieces on the team, he was the best point guard in the league despite being the second-best offensive weapon on the roster. Kevin Durant picked the team up, winning his second straight Finals MVP, but there were times that Curry carried Durant as well.
The combination of Curry and Durant were so lethal that the Cavaliers were easily swept in the Finals. By the end of the series, it looked like the Cavaliers had given up. Curry was consistent all season long and was rewarded with his third ring.
Steph Curry - 2019 (Golden State Warriors)
Stats: 27.3 PPG, 5.3 RPG, 5.2 APG, 1.3 SPG, 0.4 BPG
Team Record: 57-25
Team Playoffs: NBA Finals (Raptors def. Warriors 4-2)
The following year, Curry was just as masterful. During the season, he became the fifth-fastest player to record 15,000 career points with the Warriors. In the postseason, Curry averaged a series career-high 36.5 points to help the Warriors sweep the Trail Blazers, which was the most in a four-game series sweep in NBA history.
The Warriors were tackled with injuries in the Finals. Once both Durant and Klay Thompson went down, Curry was the last man standing. Not even his greatness could win the team over Kawhi Leonard and the Raptors. Even so, Curry’s reign of five straight Finals appearances will forever remain in the history books.
Damian Lillard - 2020 (Portland Trail Blazers)
Stats: 30.0 PPG, 4.3 RPG, 8.0 APG, 1.1 SPG, 0.3 BPG
Team Record: 35-39
Team Playoffs: First Round (Lakers def. Trail Blazers 4-1)
The “Bubble MVP” helped the Trail Blazers go from sitting on the couch to securing the No. 8 seed in the playoffs. After a four-month hiatus, Lillard recorded 45 points and 12 assists in the team’s fourth game in Orlando. Then, three days later, he followed that up with 51 points over the Nuggets and then a career-high 61 points against the Mavericks.
This was his third 60-point outing of the season, making Lillard and Wilt Chamberlain the only players to ever accomplish this three times in a season. When you are the only point guard in league history to do something like that and get your name associated with Wilt, then you must be doing something right.
Steph Curry - 2021 (Golden State Warriors)
Stats: 32.0 PPG, 5.5 RPG, 5.8 APG, 1.2 SPG, 0.1 BPG
Team Record: 39-33
Team Playoffs: None
Playing without Klay Thompson for a second season put the offensive load on Curry’s shoulders. Curry had a historic April, which featured an 11-game stretch of scoring at least 30 points in each game, which surpassed Kobe Bryant’s record for a player age 33 or older. Curry also made 78 three-pointers in that span, which was a new MVP record.
Curry averaged 37.3 points on 51.8% shooting in April. He became the first player to average 35 points and shoot 50-40-90 in a calendar month. Curry won the scoring title by holding off Bradley Beal with 46 points in the final game. Despite the Warriors losing in the play-in game after winning the No. 8 seed, the Warriors would have never been in that position had Curry not been playing.