European basketball may thrive more on motion offense and ball movement, but the NBA is more about one-on-one isolation plays. Often times during a NBA practice, there are not only 5-on-5 scrimmages that take place, but one-on-one scrimmages as well. It is not unusual for a player like LeBron James to have the ball at the top of the key, while his four other teammates are surrounding the perimeter, so that LeBron has plenty of room to go one-on-one in this isolation offense.
One-on-one isolation plays may not be the most affective way of getting a bucket, but this one-on-one, man-on-man offense is often what close games look like towards the end of a game. One-on-one situation happen all of the time in NBA games and outdoor courts of playgrounds everywhere.
So, if new commissioner, Adam Silver, ever decided to put a one-on-one tournament into an All Star Game, who would win? Which NBA players are the best one-on-one players in the NBA?
Before Kobe Bryant went down with his injury, he prided himself aloud by saying that he was the best one-on-one player in the NBA. With Kobe’s footwork, dribbling skills, fadeaway jump shot and multiple pump fakes, he was easily the best one-on-one player in the NBA. Kyrie Irving even recognized it when they were playing on the USA practice squad together and challenged Kobe for the crown.
However, Kobe will now be turning 36-years-old this year and is coming off of two major injuries and there is a new breed of players that want the crown as the best one-on-one players in the league. So, who are the Top-10 players in the NBA who have the best skill set to win a one-on-one competition?
10 Tyreke Evans
9 Paul George
8 Carmelo Anthony
7 Russell Westbrook
6 Kyrie Irving
Uncle Drew may have the nastiest handles in the league. His crossover is one of the best in the league, which keeps defenders off balance the whole time they are guarding him. In many ways, his dribbling skills resemble a young Allen Iverson.
5 James Harden
4 Stephen Curry
3 LeBron James
2 Kevin Durant
1 Jamal Crawford
Jamal Crawford is a candidate to be the 6th Man of the Year once again this year. In fact, it really should be an honorary award that Crawford wins each and every year. This year, Crawford is averaging 18.4 points per game at the ripe old age of 34. Crawford continues to prove to everyone that he has one of the deadliest shots in the league. Combine that with his ability to draw fouls in the act of shooting and he is almost impossible to guard. In fact, he has the most and 1's from the three-point line in NBA history with a total of 39 in his career; the bulk of which are created off the dribble and not off of a pass. Crawford’s ability to break ankles and shoot off the dribble make him the best one-on-one player in the league.
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