Philadelphia 76ers: Ranking Ben Simmons against all 2019-20 starting point guards

Ben Simmons | Philadelphia 76ers (Photo by David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images)
Ben Simmons | Philadelphia 76ers (Photo by David Dow/NBAE via Getty Images) /
4 of 11
(Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
(Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) /

24. Elfrid Payton, New York Knicks

The Knicks will also have a decision to make at point guard, with Dennis Smith Jr. having a strong case in his favor. But giving Elfrid Payton a contract shows New York’s odd commitment to middle-of-the-pack veterans, which likely means a vain attempt at eighth-seed contention next season.

Payton has developed into a useful offensive fulcrum, averaging 10.6 points and 7.6 assists in 42 games last season. Health is a persistent issue, but Payton could take on even more responsibilities without Jrue Holiday as a backcourt mate.

23. D.J. Augustin, Orlando Magic

I’ll believe Markelle Fultz as the Magic’s starting point guard when I see it. Until then, D.J. Augustin deserves respect for a strong 2018-19 campaign — one that featured a game-sealing shot against Toronto in the postseason.

Augustin is a steady presence and efficient scorer, tallying 11.7 points per contest last season. He shot 47 percent from the field and 42.5 percent from deep, solid averages for an undersized lead guard. He’s better than Fultz at the moment.

22. Derrick Rose, Detroit Pistons

After a renaissance last season, Derrick Rose is back in the picture as a useful NBA player. The Pistons will need to decide between Rose and Reggie Jackson at point guard, but the latter seems more and more like a stagnant, lost cause. Rose might provide some juice in the starting five.

Rose’s numbers took a dip during the second half of last season, but his averages were strong. 18.0 points and 4.3 assists on efficient 48.2 percent shooting — including an unexpected jump to 37 percent on 3-point attempts — is good no matter how you slice it. His defense remains a drawback.