Top 30 NBA shooting guards — 24. Jalen Green, Rockets
Jalen Green was actively bad for long stretches of his rookie season. Lots of rookie guards struggle to adjust to the pace and physicality of NBA basketball, so Green’s poor efficiency and lackluster defense were no huge surprise. Then, in March and April, everything clicked into place. Green ended the regular season on an absolute tear, looking like one of the best on-ball scorers in the NBA. He was a ways to go still, but the No. 2 pick clearly has the talent to take over games, and next season should officially announce him as a difference-making talent.
Top 30 NBA shooting guards — 23. Josh Giddey, Thunder
Josh Giddey set records for rookie triple-doubles as the primary playmaking fulcrum next to Shai Gilgeous-Alexander in the Thunder backcourt. He’s still fairly limited as a scorer — mainly because he doesn’t handle physicality well around the basket — but his size, rebounding, and playmaking in the backcourt is truly unique. He will get stronger over time, and the scoring comes in flashes. He’s going to be good for a long time.
Top 30 NBA shooting guards — 22. Derrick White, Celtics
After struggling for stretches with San Antonio earlier in the season, Derrick White has embraced a smaller role with the Boston Celtics en route to a Finals appearance. He’s one of the best guard defenders the game has to offer. His lateral quickness, ability to navigate screens, and activity in passing lanes makes him quite the nuisance for opposing ball-handlers. He’s well-rounded on the offensive end too, even if his 3-point shot hasn’t been as consistent as one would like.