Mario Chalmers Believes He's a Top-10 Point Guard
At one point, Emerick asked Chalmers where he thinks he ranks among the NBA's point guards, and Chalmers revealed he believes he's among the "front end of the top 10" and that he hopes to be "if not the best [point guard], then at least one of the best" by the time he retires.
Clearly, championships do funny things to the ego.
Granted, outside of Rajon Rondo, Chalmers' single championship ring is more than most other starting point guards can boast. Chris Paul, Steve Nash, Russell Westbrook, Derrick Rose, Deron Williams--generally the five players people consider part of the current "top 5" outside of Rondo--have only a handful of Conference Finals appearances between them. None of them have been to the championship round. Only two of them have become MVP (Rose and Nash). So Chalmers and his championship ring--the one he won with Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, and Chris Bosh--must be looking pretty good in comparison, right? I mean, the Heat would have been absolutely lost without him out there, right?
Like I said, championships and egos. Some funny chemistry goes on there.
Numbers aside, Chalmers' performance has never been completely suspect. He often shows flashes of elite shooting ability and can weasel his way to the rim. But he's never been consistently "elite," either. James and Wade bark at him aggressively on a consistent basis,
Of course these "top 10" debates are always subjective, and it is sometimes extremely difficult to determine who's better by comparing their individual strengths and weaknesses.
It is generally agreed, though, that Chalmers is decidedly not part of the conversation for the league's best floor generals.
To his credit, it is hard to work under James and Wade, stars who command such attention. There's only so much spotlight to go around, let alone possessions, and Chalmers has done his best to use what he's been given.
But what if James and Wade get hurt, and Chalmers is forced to take on a larger role for his team? Would people still give them a chance to go deep in the playoffs? If their stars somehow left, would the Heat actually rebuild a team around their "top 10" point guard?
The answer would be no, and that's exactly what distinguishes Chalmers from the list of point guards above. Every other player is the kind of guy you'd want to build a team around, a stud that is in the spotlight because his skill commands it, not his ego. They have a much larger impact on their respective teams than Chalmers does.
Now, there's nothing to say Chalmers can't somehow get to that point--he's shown he has the tools necessary to succeed. But championship rings have a tendency to inflate ego and sabotage dedication, and if Chalmers' comments are any indication, he already thinks he's on top. Only time will tell, then, if he can even reach--and exceed--the ridiculously high standard he's set for himself.