Top NBA shooting guards for 2021-22: Ranking all 30 starters (2023)

Who is the best shooting guard in the NBA?

The position is unique to evaluate with a handful of established stars, rising talents, skill specialists and rookies eager to make an immediate impact in the league.

A youth movement has already begun with players like Devin Booker and Donovan Mitchell stating their case to be the best at the position, but what about players like Bradley Beal, Zach LaVine and CJ McCollum who have seen sustained success for years now? After sliding over to point guard last year in Brooklyn, does James Harden revert to piling up points at the two with Irving now sidelined indefinately?With Klay Thompson expected to make his return some time around Christmas, where does the three-time NBA champion rank?

RANKING ALL 30 STARTERS: Point Guards

Second-year players like Anthony Edwards and Tyrese Haliburton are looking to further cement their place in the league following a strong rookie year, but so are first-year future stars like Cade Cunningham and Jalen Green.

With that said, let's try our hand at ranking every starting shooting guard in the NBA.

(Note: This list does not include players like reigning Sixth Man of the Year Jordan Clarkson or sharpshooter Buddy Hield because they come off of the bench for their respective teams. This list only ranks projectedstartingshooting guards in the NBA.)

NBA shootingguard rankings 2021-22

Top NBA shooting guards for 2021-22: Ranking all 30 starters (1)

1. James Harden, Brooklyn Nets

With or without Kyrie Irving in the fold, Harden figured to have the ball in his hands more than anyone in Brooklyn. Is he the shooting guard? The point guard? Does it depend on who slides into Irving's spot in the starting lineup? Does any of that actually matter?

Push comes to shove, Harden is on the short list of surest buckets to ever lace 'em up in the backcourt. Sure, we can go back-and-forth about his role and talk about his playmaking and yada yada yada but don't lose sight of the forest though the trees: Harden scores at a higher volume and more efficiently than any guard in the league. Period.

If Irving misses an extended period of time while navigating his decision on whether or not to comply with COVID vaccination mandates, chances are we'll see some version of the Harden that dropped 30 or more points in 32 consecutive games with the Rockets. Not only was that the second-longest streak of its kind in NBA history, its twice as long as any other guard in the history of the league.

Now entering his 13th season and free of carrying the team while playing next to Kevin Durant, Harden could deliver his finest season yet which is so small feat given we're talking about a formerMVP and three-time scoring champ.

MORE: Irving will not play or practice until he can participate full-time

2. Devin Booker, Phoenix Suns

Booker climbs to the top of this list following a breakout season that helped lead the Suns to their first NBA Finals appearance since 1993.

(Video) Ranking the Top 10 Shooting Guards in the NBA So Far (2021-22 NBA Season)

The 24-year-old averaged 25.6 points, 4.3 assists and4.2 rebounds per game during the regular season to help Phoenix snap a 10-year postseason drought, then in his inaugural playoff run, he elevated his game to another level.

Booker went for 30-plus points four times against the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers, including a 47-point, 11-rebound masterpiece to close out the series and hand LeBron James the first opening-round exit of his entire career. Booker didn't slow down from there, averaging 25.3 points per game to sweep the Denver Nuggets and advance to the Conference Finals.

The 24-year-old (he turns 25 on Oct. 30) had the best game of his young career in his Conference Finals debut, going for a 40-point triple-double to lead the Suns to victory without floor general Chris Paul. When Phoenix eventually advanced to the NBA Finals, Booker stated his case for Finals MVP after scoring 40-plus points in Games 4 and 5, but coming up short of the title crushed those hopes.

In Year 7, the young star guard will face loftier expectations than ever before, but if his season is anything like that playoff run, he'll only shine brighter as the stakes get higher.

3. Donovan Mitchell, Utah Jazz

There's a case to be made that Mitchell could have been in MVP conversations last year, and yet, the 25-year-old didn't even crack an All-NBA Team.

It was another career-year for the Jazz superstar, who averaged 26.4 points, 5.2 assists, 4.4 rebounds and 1.0 steals per game while leading Utah to the best overall record in the NBA. He converted3.4 3s at 38.6 percent clip and also attempted 6.0 free throws per game, all of which are the best marks of his career.

Even after missing the final month of the regular season and series opener in the postseason (certainly a factor in that All-NBA snub), Mitchell was a monster upon his return in the playoffs. He scored 30-plus points in seven of his 10 playoff games, averaging 32.3 points while shooting a blistering 43.5 percent from 3 during the Jazz's run to Western Conference Semifinals.

Coming up shy of the Conference Finals will leave Mitchell hungry for more this upcoming season.

MORE:Ranking the best NBA players entering the 2021-22 season

4. Bradley Beal, Washington Wizards

Beal is one of the most prolific scorers in the NBA, coming up just shy of his first-career scoring title again last season.

In 2019-20, Beal averaged 30.5 points per game, finishing with the second-highest scoring average in the league, trailing only Harden (34.3). It looked like he had the 2020-21 scoring title all locked upuntil Stephen Curry went full Human Torch over the last two months of the season to finish with an average of 32.0 points per game, just edging out Beal's 31.3.

Even without a scoring title, there is no denying the ease in which Beal scores the rock. He has averaged over 25.0 points per game for three-consecutive seasons, shooting an efficient47.1 percent from the field, 35.1 percent from 3 and 84.7 percent from the free throw line over that stretch.

Doing so on a Washington team without many other weapons makes what Beal is doing all that much more commendable.

5. Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls

(Video) Ranking All 30 NBA Starting Point Guards! | 2021 Edition - Tier List

LaVine continuesto improve each and every season and in 2020-21, he was finally rewarded for it by earning the first All-Star bid of his career.

Averaging career-highs of 27.4 points, 5.0 rebounds and 4.9 assists per game on career-best shooting splits of .507/.419/.849, LaVine put an end to all notions of him being a one-dimensional player and inefficient scorer.

The 26-year-old proved himself as a secondary playmaker in addition to his high-level scoring ability and if all goes to plan, we'll finally see that translate to wins in 2021-22. This offseason, the Bulls have surrounded LaVine with the most talent he's ever played with in adding Lonzo Ball and DeMar DeRozan to the trade deadline acquisition of Nikola Vucevic. With more weapons for opposing defenses to worry about, LaVine should be in line for a monster season and potentially, the first playoff berth of his career.

OFFSEASON GRADES: East | West

Top NBA shooting guards for 2021-22: Ranking all 30 starters (2)

6. C.J. McCollum, Portland Trail Blazers

McCollum was well on his way to his first-career All-Star bid last season before a foot injury derailed his blazing start just 13 games in.

In the 12 games prior to theinjury that sidelined McCollum for two full months, he averaged 27.6points, 5.3 assists, 4.3 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game. The 30-year-old bounced back strong upon his return, finishing with season-long averages of 23.1 points, 4.7 assists and 3.9 rebounds per game, playing Robin to Damian Lillard's Batman in another playoff berth for his Trail Blazers.

McCollum is one of the league's sharpest midrange marksmen and has a deadly floater to bury the soft spots of opposing defenses. With Portland's title aspirations facing more pressure by the year, it will be interesting to see what he has in store entering a fresh start with a clean bill of healththis season.

MORE: McCollum looms large in potential Ben Simmons trades

7. Klay Thompson, Golden State Warriors

Thompson was by far the toughest to place on this list, because when fully healthy, he would come in much higher than seventh. But after missing the past two full seasons recovering from an ACL injury and an Achilles injury, respectively, what version of the 31-year-old will we see?

In 2018-19, the last season we saw Thompson, he averaged 21.5 points, 3.8 rebounds, 2.4 assists and 1.1 steals per game while shooting 40.2 percent from 3. He earned his fifth-consecutive All-Star bid, was namedSecond Team All-Defense and helped lead the Warriors to their fifthNBA Finals in as many seasons. He was still a 3-point marksman and lockdown defender, and Golden State will hope he makes a full return to a similar player.

Thompson is expected to make his debut some time around Christmas, meaning he'll likely miss half of the season.

8. Terry Rozier, Charlotte Hornets

Rozier has been an awesome success story over the past few seasons, going from a reserveguard to a solidified starter in the NBA.

(Video) My OFFICAL 2021 NBA Starting Shooting Guard Tier List

Eyebrows were raised when the Hornets gave Rozier a $57 million deal over three years in the summer of 2019. He responded by doubling his scoring average (18.0 PPG)from the previous season (9.0 PPG) while shooting at the most efficient clip of his career.

Last season, he upped that scoring average again, shot even more efficiently and also became one of the best clutch scorers in the league. Rozier averaged 20.4 points, 4.4 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game while shooting a career-best 45.0 percent from the field.

In the clutch, only Karl-Anthony Towns, Zion Williamson, James Harden and Damian Lillard scored more points while shooting better than Rozier's 50.0 field goal percentagemark when it mattered most.

Charlotte doubled down on their bet with Rozier, offering the 27-year-old a four-year, $97 million extension this offseason. He is undeniably one of the 10 best shooting guards in the NBA.

9. Marcus Smart, Boston Celtics

Smart's averages don't do justice to what he brings to the court. As one of the best all-around defenders in the NBA, Smart plays with heart and intensity that is immeasurable beyond numbers. And even with that being said, the Celtics' captain posted career-highs with 13.1 points and 5.7 assists per game last season,coming into his own as a playmaker.

Smart missed out on an All-Defensive Team selection in 2020-21 for the first time in three years, likely due to only 48 games played because of injuries or coronavirushealth and safety protocols. It's safe to assume that ifthe scrappy guard participates in more games in 2021-22, he'll make his return to one of the two All-Defensive Teams.

He lands on this list as the No. 9 ranked shooting guard, but don't be surprised if new head coach Ime Udoka deploys Smart as the starting point guard to begin the season.

10. Anthony Edwards, Minnesota Timberwolves

Edwards' firstseason may have come up just short of Rookie of the Year honors, but the former No. 1 overall pick is destined for greatness.

The 20-year-old took things up a notch once he got settled into the NBA, taking over as the Timberwolves' full-time starting shooting guard 18 games into the season. He continued to slowly progress as the year went on, displaying his limitless potential down the home stretch of the season.

After the All-Star break, Edwards averaged 23.8 points, 5.3 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.4 steals per game while shooting a much-improved 45.4 percent from the field and 34.9 percent from 3. He delivered theindisputableDunk of the Yearand also began to step up as "the guy" for his team late in games.

For now, he comes in at 10th on this list, but expect to see Edwards continue to climb his way up the ranks every year.

Top NBA shooting guards for 2021-22: Ranking all 30 starters (3)

11. Tyrese Haliburton, Sacramento Kings

12. Caris LeVert, Indiana Pacers

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13. Cade Cunningham, Detroit Pistons

14. Jalen Green, Houston Rockets

15. Bogdan Bogdanovic, Atlanta Hawks

16. Collin Sexton, Cleveland Cavaliers

17. Duncan Robinson, Miami Heat

18. Dillon Brooks, Memphis Grizzlies

19. Evan Fournier, New York Knicks

20. Tim Hardaway Jr., Dallas Mavericks

  • LeVert is dealing with a stress fracture in his back and could very easily impact his standing on this list, but when he's at full strength, there's no denying the 27-year-old's talent as a scorer and playmaker. Without the overhanging injury, he very well could have cracked the top 10.
  • With high expectations set in Year 1 for Cunningham and Green, it was nearly impossible to place thefuture superstars. Cunningham comes in at shooting guard with the expectation that Killian Hayes will play point guard, and the No. 1 overall pick in the 2021 NBA Draft could very easily state his case as one of the best at his position if he reaches his full potential right away. Green will be handed the keys to the Rockets offense immediately and will have the opportunity to put up monster numbers that could win him Rookie of the Year honors.
  • The next group of Bogdanovic, Sexton, Robinson, Brooks, Fournier and Hardaway represent six players who excel in their roles as certified starters, each bringing a specific skillset to their team. There's a case to be made that you could shuffle those six in any order and still be correct.

21. Seth Curry, Philadelphia 76ers

22. Luguentz Dort, Oklahoma City Thunder

23. Gary Trent Jr., Toronto Raptors

24. Markelle Fultz, Orlando Magic

25. Donte DiVincenzo, Milwaukee Bucks

26. Terance Mann, LA Clippers

27. Will Barton, Denver Nuggets

28. Nickeil Alexander-Walker, New Orleans Pelicans

(Video) NBA SHOOTING GUARD TIER LIST! *2022 EDITION*

29. Derrick White, San Antonio Spurs

30. Wayne Ellington, Los Angeles Lakers

  • Curry may have the chance to shoot up this list if he is forced to replace some point guard production from the likely-absent Ben Simmons. Dort has become one of the best perimeter defenders in the NBA but still has a ways to go in fine-tuning his offensive skills. Trent had an inconsistent role because of injuries and, to be frank, tanking, after being traded to Toronto and it will be interesting to see what he's capable of as a probable full-time starter.
  • Fultz and DiVincenzo are both coming off of season-ending injuries with plenty to prove after displaying a lot of promise in their last stints on the court.
  • Mann and Alexander-Walker are two players to watch for breakout seasons in new roles for their respective teams this year.

FAQs

Who is the best shooter in the NBA right now 2022? ›

11 Devin Booker. Booker is probably the best shooting guard in the NBA now after helping the Suns to the Finals in 2021 and earning first-team All-NBA honors in 2022.

Who is the best SG in the league? ›

In an anonymous poll of NBA general managers, Booker was voted as the best shooting guard in the league. Booker received 45% of the votes, with Luka Doncic (28%) and Stephen Curry (17%) falling behind. Bradley Beal, James Harden and Jayson Tatum.

Who is the best point guard? ›

Curry was voted as the best point guard by 72% of GMs, Luka Doncic received 14% of the vote, Chris Paul received 10%, and Trae Young received 3%. By comparison, last year Steph Curry won the vote by 57%. Within a year, Steph Curry received an extra 15% from GMs on the topic of being the best point guard.

Who is the best SF in the NBA right now? ›

Ranking NBA's Top 10 Small Forwards for the 2022-23 Season
  • #8 Brandon Ingram. ...
  • #7 Andrew Wiggins. ...
  • #6 Jimmy Butler. ...
  • #5 Paul George. ...
  • #4 Jayson Tatum. ...
  • #3 Kawhi Leonard. ...
  • #2 Kevin Durant. ...
  • #1 LeBron James. Expect James to be more motivated than ever.
19 Sept 2022

Who is the best SG in the NBA right now? ›

01 Devin Booker, Phoenix Suns

In 2021-22, Booker became the best player on a Suns team that finished with the best record in the league at 64-18. Booker and Phoneix as a whole laid an egg in Game 7 of the second round against Dallas, but that shouldn't take away from Booker's growth as a superstar in the NBA.

Who is the greatest 3 point shooter of all time? ›

The Complete List
RankPlayer3-Pointers Made
1Stephen Curry3117
2Kyle Korver2450
3Steve Kerr726
4Ray Allen2973
50 more rows
12 Apr 2022

Who is the best 3 point shooter in NBA right now? ›

Seth Curry

Who is the best 3pt shooter in 2022? ›

Stephen Curry drained the most threes in 2021-22, with 285 three-pointers.

Who is the best center of all time? ›

20 greatest centers ever: The HoopsHype list
  1. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Top accolades: Six NBA titles, two Finals MVPs, six MVPs, 10 All-NBA 1st Team selections, 19 All-Stars, five All-Defensive 1st Team selections. ...
  2. Bill Russell. ...
  3. Wilt Chamberlain. ...
  4. Shaquille O'Neal. ...
  5. Hakeem Olajuwon. ...
  6. Moses Malone. ...
  7. David Robinson. ...
  8. Patrick Ewing.

Is Klay Thompson a top 10 shooting guard? ›

7 on the list that ranked 22 shooting guards from around the NBA. Read the full list of rankings via CBS Sports here. After a two-season layoff due to major injuries, Thompson made his highly-anticipated return to action during the 2021-22 campaign.

Which shooting guard has the most assists? ›

Clyde Drexler has the most career assists by a shooting guard, with 6,125 assists.

Is Klay Thompson a top 10 shooting guard? ›

7 on the list that ranked 22 shooting guards from around the NBA. Read the full list of rankings via CBS Sports here. After a two-season layoff due to major injuries, Thompson made his highly-anticipated return to action during the 2021-22 campaign.

Who is a shooting guard in the NBA? ›

2022-23 Hollinger NBA Player Statistics - Shooting Guards
Hollinger Stats - Player Efficiency Rating - Qualified Shooting Guards
RKPLAYERPER
1James Harden, PHI43.00
2Jaylen Brown, BOS30.63
3Klay Thompson, GS20.06
30 more rows

How tall is Devin Booker? ›

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