Friday, December 20, 2013

What Defines an Elite Player in the NBA?

Indiana Pacers Forward Paul George and Portland Trailblazers Guard Damian Lillard have gotten off to a great start this year with both of their teams a combined 42-10. But are they elite?

 This is a question often asked by the media, however, few players really belong in the Elite category. While players like Heat Guard Mario Chalmers and Wizards Forward Marcin Gortat are both solid starters, neither would be called elite. 

So what defines an Elite player and how can you tell a good player from an Elite one? 

Is it Championships? Partly. However, Clippers Guard Chris Paul is widely recognized as the best Point Guard in the NBA despite winning no Championships so far in his NBA career. 

Heat Forward Lebron James was considered Elite long before his team won back-to-back Championships. In the end, Championship's are what define an Elite player from an All-Time Great rather than a good player from an Elite one. 

So what DOES make a player Elite? The ability to carry a team on his own?

 The ability to be a strong team player? 

Or just a simply being more talented than others? 

For most, it is a combination of the three.

 A typical Elite Player can carry his team, make good plays for the rest of his team, and is talented enough to take his team to the next level. It's still too early to call George or Lillard a true Elite player, however, both are playing at an extremely high level and should they continue to play at the level they currently are playing at, they will be joining the Elite club very soon. 

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