By Brandon Funston
October 12, 2005
Preseason Position Rankings: Point Guard | Shooting Guard | Small Forward | Power Forward | Center
The cream of the '05 class of fantasy point guards runs deep, with at least a dozen players offering a proven track record of consistent production. I have Dwyane Wade at the top of the crop, even though he'll play mostly shooting guard for the Heat this season. He retains his PG eligibility, and should benefit fantasy owners most in that spot.
Wade did not rank as the top PG in the Yahoo! Fantasy Basketball game last season – Gilbert Arenas held that honor – but when you factor in Wade's one-plus blocked shots per game, he's a fantasy luxury, lessening the worry of having to take a stiff at center that satisfies a blocks need.
Steve Nash rated out just ninth among PGs in the Yahoo! game, but what is it worth to fantasy owners to lock up a fantasy league's assists title with one pick on draft day? That's, essentially, is what Nash offers, as he finished with 193 more assists than the next closest contender.
There is plenty of intrigue at the point guard position — Jameer Nelson gets a shot at starting out of the gate in Orlando, Marko Jaric finds himself with the good fortune of setting up shots for Kevin Garnett in Minnesota and Jamaal Tinsley and Sarunas Jasikevicius, a Euroleague superstar from Lithuania, showcase themselves for head coach Rick Carlisle in one the highest profile position battles of the preseason.
Taking all things into consideration, here is a look at the top 25 points guards for the '05-'06 fantasy basketball season:
||Dwyane Wade, Mia, G
||Not a PG anymore, but he can still play one in fantasy. Wade does everything but shoot treys. And 1.1 blocks from the PG spot is a roto luxury.
||Allen Iverson, Phi, PG
||Coming off a career-best fantasy season, AI is enjoying new coach Cheeks so much that he is actually excited to practice.
||Steve Nash, Pho, PG
||Loss of Stoudemire robs him of a few easy assists, but he may make them up by running more than ever.
||Gilbert Arenas, Was, PG
|| Dynamic scorer, pick-pocket and long-range bomber who only disappoints in fantasy for lack of assists.
||Jason Kidd, NJ, PG
||Last April we saw the old-school Kidd return - 19.2 points, 9.7 assists, 9.3 boards, 2.5 steals - but his minutes will drop below 35 a night with McInnis signing
||Baron Davis, GS, PG
||Got a new lease on life in Golden State - 19.5 points, 8.3 assists, 3.9 boards, 2.6 treys, 1.8 steals. Issues are durability, turnovers and spotty shooting
||Stephon Marbury, NY, PG
||Among PGs, Marbury wins for consistency. Count on 20 points, 8 assists and 80 games, give or take
||Mike Bibby, Sac, PG
||Surrounded by scorers - Peja, Shareef, Bonzi - steady Bibby likely to see spike in assists
||Steve Francis, Orl, PG
|| Still a dynamic performer, but his three-ball is disappearing and his FG% is still in the low-rent district
||Chauncey Billups, Det, PG
||A steady PG with big-time skills beyond the arc. Fantasy owners wish he put up the numbers that he does in postseason during the regular season.
||Kirk Hinrich, Chi, PG
|| If you can stomach his atrocious FG%, you'll enjoy an otherwise good all-around fantasy game.
||Andre Miller, Den, PG
||47.7 FG% was nice; So was 8.2 assists per game post-break
||Jason Terry, Dal, PG
||Minutes dropped significantly last season, but Avery Johnson bumped them back up when he took over for Don Nelson.
||Damon Stoudamire, Mem, PG
||Should be afforded ample playing time with new-look Griz, which means it will be raining threes.
||Jameer Nelson, Orl, PG
||15.7 points, 5.2 assists, 4.7 boards, 1.7 steals, .480 FG% as a starter - He'll start from the get-go this season
||Marko Jaric, Min, PG
||While assists should flow more freely teamed with KG, it's the steals that will endear you most to Jaric.
||Tony Parker, SA, PG
||He's improved by baby steps every year and, at 23, he still has room to grow. Fantasy owners hope the growth will come in treys and FT%.
||Chris Paul, NO, PG
|| Yeah, he's a rookie and New Orleans is destined for 60 losses, but Paul is cat-quick and NBA-ready.
||Luke Ridnour, Sea, PG
||Time share with Antonio Daniels is thing of the past; If Luke develops more confidence on offense, he'll be a draft-day steal.
||Rafer Alston, Hou, PG
||His offense will be dialed down with T-Mac and Yao around, but fantasy owners will enjoy the assists and steals.
||Sebastian Telfair, Por, PG
||12.5 points, 6.7 assists, 1.4 steals in April gives fantasy owners something to believe in from the 20-year-old
||Damon Jones, Cle, PG
||One of the premiere three-point shooters in the league should get his open looks with LBJ around.
||Deron Williams, Utah, PG
||Playmaking rookie is not that quick, but he sees the floor well, and has scoring outlets in AK-47 and Boozer.
||Shaun Livingston, LAC, PG
|| Smooth operator and a dishing dynamo who averaged 7.4 assists in April. Cassell will eat into his time early but at some point Dunleavy will have to ask himself why.
||Jamaal Tinsley, Ind, PG
||Will lose some PT to Jasikevicius, but Tinsley can put up treys, steals and assists in a hurry
Brandon Funston is a Yahoo! Sports fantasy expert. Follow him on Twitter. Send Brandon a question or comment for potential use in a future column or webcast.
Updated on Wednesday, Oct 12, 2005 3:09 pm, EDT
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