Mike Conley: 14.6 PPG, 6.1 APG, 2.8 RPG, 2.2 SPG
Ty Lawson: 16.7 PPG, 6.9 APG, 2.7 RPG, 1.5 SPG
In this battle of up and coming point guards, the similarities are remarkably vast. The stat lines are as close to identical as you will find. The Denver Nuggets have their franchise point guard in Ty Lawson, a small but lightning quick player with the ability to create off the dribble and knock down the open shot. The Memphis Grizzlies have their own franchise point guard in Mike Conley, a slightly more experience player that has really come into his own. Conley is a pass first guard, but has shown flashes of being a scoring threat. So if you had your choice between the two, who would you choose to run your point?
Breaking it down a little further, Ty Lawson is a 5’11” guard who has finished his 4th year in the league with the Nuggets. He has improved each season while slowly taking over as a key piece to the young team. He handles the ball extremely well, with his assist to turnover ratio being close to 3/1. Lawson has become a scoring threat as well, knocking down 37% from behind the ark. One of his greatest assets is his quickness that has become one of the main reasons why the Nuggets score so much and play at such a fast rate. He has a special ability to push the tempo while not causing it to create unnecessary turnovers. The one downside to his game is his size that causes some defensive issues. With many big point guards today, he can get mismatched, but he can definitely hold his own.
Looking at Mike Conley, we see a 6 year player standing 6’1” who handles the point guard duties for the Grizzlies who are a very polar opposite to the Nuggets. Conley has been pretty consistent through his years, but has developed into a core player for Memphis. He does an excellent job at controlling the flow of the game for a team that runs a lot of sets for their big men. Conley knocks down 36% of his threes, and an extremely efficient 60% within the basket area. He like Lawson is close to a 3/1 assist to turnover ratio, and takes the ball away 2.2 times a game which is very impressive. He does struggle on defense, especially with stronger point guard as he is not as strong as many others at the position. Overall though, he has developed into a very reliable guard who knows how to control a team.
Which way does this take you? Who would be the better choice to run your team ?
Both guards are very solid options and very reliable. The deciding factor may be how fast paced you prefer your team to be. As much as I like working the ball inside and slowing down the game a little, I have to go with Ty Lawson in this contest. The reason for this is upside. Conley has shown through 6 years to be very consistent, while Lawson in 4 has continued to improve. I would have no problem having Conley as my guard, but in my mind Lawson has the most potential between the two.