Composite Score Ranks the NBA: Shooting Guards

For an explanation of how Composite Score works and a full list of numbers for every player in the league, go to

1. Name: Dwyane Wade. Composite Score Percentile: 99.38%

Also known as the Miami Heat, Wade is a legitimate MVP candidate and clearly one of the top players in the league. According to Composite Score, last season was a total disaster for him. His defense looked terrible and he was surprisingly inefficient on offense. That has all changed this season. Wade creates a ton of shots (more than anyone in the NBA) yet is still relatively efficient. He gambles a bit on defense, but that has helped him become one of the league leaders in steals. When he gets into the right mindset and locks down on D, he’s as good as they come.

2. Name: Ray Allen. Composite Score Percentile: 99.07%

What?! No Kobe? We’ll get to him later. Allen may not actually be the second best shooting guard in the NBA, but he does deserve respect as one of the NBA’s best. Offensively his skills have never been doubted. He ranks as one of the greatest shooters ever. However, Allen’s game is very complete and he does so many things well. His one weakness has been defense, but the trade to Boston changed that. Watch a few Celtics games and you’ll see that Allen does a great job of sticking to his man. Being excellent on both offense and defense is a recipe for success.

3. Name: Kobe Bryant. Composite Score Percentile: 95.67%

Delonte West actually ranked third, but I left him out because I’m understandably not convinced that he should be ranked that high. With Kobe, there is no doubt. His offense, as expected, is among the best in the league. The reason his Composite Score isn’t higher is because of his relatively low Defensive Composite Score, which sits at 83.59%. This goes against conventional wisdom, but there may be some reasons for that. Part of it might be who he often shares the floor with, or maybe it’s the fact that he’s often matched up against great scorers. Those guys will produce no matter who’s covering them, making Bryant look worse than he actually is. In actuality, Kobe should be right up with there with Wade.

With that being said, I’m not backing down from my belief that LeBron James is the best player in the league.

4. Name: Tracy McGrady. Composite Score Percentile: 92.88%

I have to admit that I was a bit surprised when I first saw his CS. McGrady certainly has a great track record, but he’s been injured for much of the season and has been criticized in numerous spaces. If you look at the numbers, you can see his offense is not the reason he’s up this high. It’s actually his defense. Again, I’m a bit skeptical. McGrady has a lot of defensive support and is usually “hidden” on one of the team’s weaker players while Shane Battier and Ron Artest do the dirty work. McGrady’s obviously a great player, I just don’t know if he’s this great at this point.

5. Name: Joe Johnson. Composite Score Percentile: 90.09%

The Hawks are a legitimately good team and Joe Johnson is their go-to guy. He’s not a superstar, but he’s definitely in the second tier of the game’s better players. His defense doesn’t look too good according to my numbers but it may be the same case as with Kobe. Johnson is often given tough assignments on defense, such as chasing around quick point guards. Impressively, he still carries the load on offense and does it in an efficient manner. I imagine he’s getting pretty fatigued.

Honorable Mentions: Manu Ginobili, Michael Redd, Vince Carter, Brandon Roy

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It seems like your Composite Score rating overvalues role players on good defensive teams. Perhaps on offense you could include usage rate.

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