John Wall is not the best point guard in the NBA.
I think it’s Chris Paul. If you want to debate it’s Tony Parker or Derrick Rose or Kyrie Irving (he will be in a couple of years), those are legitimate arguments to make. Wall hasn’t put himself in that conversation yet, despite his new five-year, $80 million contract.
Unless you ask Wall. Which is exactly what SI’s Chris Mannix (who works with NBC as well) did filling in for Dan Patrick on the radio Friday. The entire interview is above (they discuss take-out tipping, which is somehow a debate — yes you should tip a little) but here is the crux of the discussion:
Mannix: Alright, John. Where do you rank among NBA point guards?
Mannix: Where do you rank, yeah?
Wall: I rank myself the best.
Mannix: Number 1?
Wall: Yeah, I rank myself the best.
Mannix: Are you basing that on past accomplishments or are you basing it on what you think you can do in the future?
Wall: Just basing it on what I can do in the future…I feel like I always can improve. There’s a lot of talented point guards out there, but I feel like I can hold my own.
Well, he’s confident.
Wall has the tools to be one of the NBA’s elite point guards, but he hasn’t put that level of play together for an extended period (and there have been injuries). The Wizards are betting that he can — betting $80 million. For a Washington team that needs to change its culture and needs to overpay a star to be their anchor, it’s a good gamble. But it is one.