Ranking Jose Calderon as a Point Guard

Saw this quote two days ago in a solid Olympic Scouting Report [courtesy of Xavier, a European coach, at Forum Blue and Gold]:

Jose Calderon would be a starter in 25 of the 30 NBA teams … “

and, as you might expect by now, it started the wheels a-turning.

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Where exactly does El Matador [Jose Calderon] stack up in today’s NBA, versus the likes of:

[in alphabetical order]

Alston, Rafer; Arenas, Gilbert; Barbosa, Leandro; Bibby, Mike; Billups, Chauncey; Blake, Steve; Calderon, Jose; Conley, Mike Jr.; Davis, Baron; Duhon, Chris; Ellis, Monta; Felton, Raymond; Fisher, Derek; Ford, TJ; Foye, Randy; Gibson, Daniel; Gordon, Ben; Harris, Devan; Hinrich, Kirk; Iverson, Allen; Jack, Jarrett; Kidd, Jason; Livingston, Shaun; Lowry, Nick; Marbury, Stephon; Miller, Andre; Nash, Steve; Nelson, Jameer; Parker, Tony; Paul, Chris; Ridnour, Luke; Rondo, Rajon; Roy, Brandon; Telfair, Sebastien; Terry, Jason; Tinsley, Jamaal; Udrih, Beno; Watson, Earl; West, Delonte; Williams, Marcus; Williams, Deron; Williams, Jason; Williams, Mo

Do you think Calderon would be considered as The Starter for as many as 25 of the NBA’s 30 teams?

Where do you rank him, as a Point Guard, heading into the 2008-2009 season? [i.e. as No. ?]

In your personal rankings, is Calderon in your:

i) #1-5
ii) #6-10
iii) #11-15
iv) #16 plus

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Once again, all are welcome to participate.


Note 1:
Final Results will be published Thu, August 14, 2008.
Note 2 : As a precursor … this ranking was published here Dec 19, 2007; followed by this one [Jan 30, 2008].

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8 Responses to “Ranking Jose Calderon as a Point Guard”

  1. Dave Says:

    Over the past season I considered both TJ Ford and Jose Calderon top 12 point guards in the league.

    Calderon’s defense is the big reason why I’d hold back from placing him higher on the list.

    I’m fairly comfortable with my top 9 – Deron Williams, Chris Paul, Tony Parker, Baron Davis, Steve Nash, Gilbert Arenas, Chauncey Billups, Andre Miller, Jason Kidd – from there it could be anybody in 10th place. There isn’t enough to significantly differentiate anybody the trailing pack. This is why I went Top 12 instead of 10 during the past season!

    I didn’t consider guys like Iverson or Monta (that could change) because I don’t consider them point guards. Nor did I consider Roy because he’s primarily an off guard … although he’s a worthy candidate because he can play the point at an All-Star level and would easily slot into that top 10 if considered.

    Calderon is in my top 12. If you want Brandon Roy in the vote Calderon is top 10-15 otherwise I’m happy slotting him into either 5-10 or 10-15, he’s on the bubble.

  2. FeetinthePaint Says:

    I tend to agree with date, except with Miller at what is clearly a 9th place. Calderon is a very nice offensive player that has taken great strides in terms of jump shooting. He stacks up very nicely within that 10-15 range.

  3. FeetinthePaint Says:

    And by “date,” I mean “Dave” with the other shoe dropping…

  4. Raps Fan Says:

    For me, Calderon is top 10 in the league. Calderon/Ford/Miller are somewhat interchangeable for me, I gave the edge to Calderon/Ford because they are younger and quicker on their feet.

    Deron Williams
    Chris Paul
    Tony Parker
    Steve Nash
    Baron Davis
    Chauncey Billups
    Jason Kidd
    Jose Calderon
    TJ Ford
    Andre Miller

    roy, iverson, ellis (who will be playing point, but still doesn’t make him one) are not really pg’s, if you want them in the equation, then Jose slips to 10, and TJ to 11 (much like Dave).

    another interesting question is “if you are building a team right now for the future, who would pick?”

    the top 5 for me has to be, in order:

    Deron Williams
    Chris Paul
    Tony Parker
    Jose Calderon
    TJ Ford

  5. atthehive Says:

    Great topic Khandor, my bad for responding so late.

    Question: why do people (ie Raps Fan and Dave) consider Kidd better than Calderon? Calderon is a scorching shooter (57.5 eFG% and 43% from three) versus a pathetic 46 eFG% for Kidd last year. Calderon has improved his turnover rate every year he’s been in the league, down to a career low 14.2% rate last year. Kidd posted a horrible 23.5% rate last year.

    On the defensive side of the ball, Kidd can’t handle most of the elite Western point guards (Paul, Williams, Nash, Davis). I don’t consider Calderon a great or even good defender, but I’d much rather have him defensively than Kidd.

    Obviously Kidd is a fantastic rebounder for a guard. Calderon can’t match that. But overall, I don’t see what Kidd has over Calderon other than “reputation.”

  6. Dave Says:

    Yeah Kidd was on the edge of my thinking and that’s why he’s the 9th name on my list up there. I think each of the 8 guys ahead of him are superior to him. The next question was does he deserve to be one of the final slots on that list or put on the bubble below? I decided he still deserved a place.

    Kidd is phenomenal creator on the basketball court, especially in the open court. Just by putting him on the floor you’re getting a big jump in fastbreak points and overall diversity of your offense. The only point guard in the league close to Kidd’s creativity is Steve Nash. I’d give him a large advantage over most point guards in the NBA here including Calderon.

    His turnovers are fast becoming a larger problem but they’re still out-done by the overall contributions he makes to the game. In particular, Kidd’s superior rebounding and creation of turnovers more than makes up the difference. Calderon is the best in the NBA at looking after the ball and that is important to me, but I’d give Kidd some extra leg room because of he takes more risks in creating plays for his teammates and does so at a high level.

    Think of it this way – Calderon averages 1.8 turnovers per 36 minutes and also 1.3spg and 0.1bpg a net of -0.4. Kidd averages 3.3 turnovers and 1.7spg and 0.3bpg, a net of -1.3 possessions. The difference in possessions is only 1 per game. Add in Kidd’s rebounding advantage which creates more possessions again and the turnovers simply are not that important, they’re ugly but not that important.

    Kidd’s defense has slipped over the years and he is now, and has been for a few years, a very poor man-to-man defender. His lateral quickness is shot. However he still has very good help defensive instincts and that’s a big reason why Dallas’ defensive efficiency actually improved after they traded a player who many argue is the best defensive PG in the country (albeit having a below par season defensively by Devin’s standards), we’ll see if this actually holds up over a full season but it’s a glimpse that he still brings some value defensively. Because of the quality of his help D I’d place him as an average or slightly below average defender. Calderon on the other hand is just plain bad on the defensive end, he’s definitely worse and significantly worse than Kidd.

    Calderon is a better shooter but Jason’s shooting difficulties are overstated. He shot 38% from three last season and has shot around 35% for the three years prior. He’s a solid perimeter shooter, despite the media’s protests to the opposite, which is all he really needs shooting wise. His overall scoring efficiency is a bleaker picture but that’s off less importance because he isn’t a high volume scorer and doesn’t take many field goal attempts. Clearly Calderon has a size-able advantage in shooting ability. I’m not someone who cares that much about shooting from my point guard so long as the point can make a respectable number of jump shots to keep spacing offensively so this doesn’t hold too much importance to me.

    Kidd’s rebounding is incredible. He leads all guards in the NBA and ties LeBron for the most of any perimeter player and is top 30 overall in the NBA. I believe he’s recently moved into 2nd place all time for rebounds by a guard, and he’s just coming off his two best rebounding seasons in the NBA so he’s been getting better with age here.

    Overall Kidd can change games in far more ways. He’ll figure out a way to beat you and do his best to supply it. His low post game helps a lot offensively, plus his rebounding, better D, more creativity, his brilliance in the open court.

    Last season, Jason Kidd was also the dominant player in the Raptors-Nets series by far outplaying either/both TJ or Calderon. Jason’s game hasn’t changed all that much since then either – most of his decline was already in place prior to last season, turnovers the only major difference between then and now.

    Plus even at his advanced age and with his decline I don’t believe Kidd gets outplayed by Jameer Nelson in a playoff series.

    To conclude, I think he still has enough about him to make the end of my list of the top points in the game but he is certainly at the end of that list and in large part because of his poor defense. His previous high level D was one of the most important reasons why he was an All-Pro level player despite his lack of scoring, that hole created by his defensive decline has limited his impact nowadays.

  7. Robin Says:

    I believe that modern point guards need to be able to get into the lane and be able to finish at the basket, or at least be some kind of scoring threat. The threat of scoring, both while in the process of driving and after getting to the rim, is vital for creating shot opportunities. Jose is not only a deadly shooter from the perimeter, but he’s also one of the top finishers in the league, %-wise. While last season he only got to the rim 1/4 of the time compared to Parker or Paul, he shoots a lot less overall, and given another season I can see him becoming a top tier point guard.

  8. El Matador es el numero ocho « Khandor’s Sports Blog Says:

    […] Thanks to all those who submitted comments and voted during the past week. Unfortunately, not enough in total to serve as a valid […]

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