Point guard

The point guard (PG), also called the one or point, is one of the five positions in a regulation basketball game. A point guard has perhaps the most specialized role of any position. Point guards are expected to run the team's offense by controlling the ball and making sure that it gets to the right player at the right time. Above all, the point guard must totally understand and accept their coach's game plan; in this way, the position can be compared to a quarterback in American football or a playmaker in association football (soccer). While the point guard must understand and accept the coach's gameplan, they must also be able to adapt to what the defense is allowing, and they also must control the pace of the game.

A point guard, like other player positions in basketball, specializes in certain skills. A point guard's primary job is to facilitate scoring opportunities for his/her team, or sometimes for themselves. Lee Rose has described a point guard as a coach on the floor, who can handle and distribute the ball to teammates. This involves setting up plays on the court, getting the ball to the teammate in the best position to score, and controlling the tempo of the game. A point guard should know when and how to instigate a fast break and when and how to initiate the more deliberate sets. Point guards are expected to be vocal floor leaders. A point guard needs always to have in mind the times on the shot clock and the game clock, the score, the numbers of remaining timeouts for both teams, etc.

Among the taller players who have enjoyed success at the position is Ben Simmons, who at 6’ 10” won the 2018 National Basketball Association Rookie of the Year Award. Behind him is Magic Johnson, who at 6’ 9” (2.06 m) won the National Basketball Association Most Valuable Player Award three times in his career. Other point guards who have been named NBA MVP include Russell Westbrook, Bob Cousy, Oscar Robertson, Allen Iverson, Derrick Rose and two-time winners Steve Nash and Stephen Curry. In the NBA, point guards are usually about 6' 4" (1.93 m) or shorter, and average about 6' 2" (1.88 m) whereas in the WNBA, point guards are usually 5' 9" (1.75 m) or shorter. Having above-average size (height, muscle) is considered advantageous, although size is secondary to situational awareness, speed, quickness, and ball handling skills. Shorter players tend to be better dribblers since they are closer to the floor, and thus have better control of the ball while dribbling.

After an opponent scores, it is typically the point guard who brings the ball down court to begin an offensive play. Passing skills, ball handling, and court vision are crucial. Speed is important; a speedy point guard is better able to create separation and space off the dribble, giving him/herself room to work. Point guards are often valued more for their assist totals than for their scoring. Another major evaluation factor is assist-to-turnover ratio, which reflects the decision-making skills of the player. Still, a first-rate point guard should also have a reasonably effective jump shot.

Stephen Curry Shooting (cropped)
Point guard Stephen Curry. Curry won three NBA championships with the Golden State Warriors.

Offense

SteveNash3
Steve Nash led the NBA in assists five times.

The point guard is positioned on the perimeter of the play, so as to have the best view of the action. This is a necessity because of the point guard's many leadership obligations. Many times, the point guard is referred to by announcers as a "coach on the floor" or a "floor general". In the past, this was particularly true, as several point guards such as Lenny Wilkens served their teams as player-coaches. This is not so common anymore, as most coaches are now solely specialized in coaching and are non-players. Some point guards are still given a great deal of leeway in the offense. Even point guards who are not given this much freedom, however, are still extensions of their coach on the floor and must display good leadership skills.

Along with leadership and a general basketball acumen, ball-handling is a skill of great importance to a point guard. Generally speaking, the point guard is the player in possession of the ball for the most time during a game and is responsible for maintaining possession of the ball for his team in the face of any pressure from the opponents. Point guards must be able to maintain possession of the ball in crowded spaces and in traffic and be able to advance the ball quickly. A point guard that has enough ball-handling skill and quickness to be able to drive to the basket in a half-court set is also very valuable and considered by some to be a must for a successful offense.

After ball-handling, passing and scoring are the most important areas of the game for a point guard. As the primary decision-maker for a team, a point guard's passing ability determines how well a point guard is able to put his decision into play. It is one thing to be able to recognize the player that is in a tactically advantageous position, but it is another thing entirely to be able to deliver the ball to that player. For this reason, a point guard is usually, but not always, more skilled and focused on passing than shooting. However, a good jump shot and the ability to score off a drive to the basket are still valuable skills. A point guard will often use his ability to score in order to augment his effectiveness as a decision maker and play maker.

In addition to the traditional role of the point guard, modern teams have found new ways to utilize the position. Notably, several modern point guards have used a successful style of post play, a tactic usually practiced by much larger centers and forwards. Working off of the fact that the opposing point guard is in all probability an undersized player with limited strength, several modern point guards have developed games close to the basket that include being able to utilize the drop step, spin move, and fade away jump shot.

Stephen Curry 2
Stephen Curry is one of the best scoring point guards in NBA history.

In recent years, the sport's shift from a fundamental style of play to a more athletic, scoring-oriented game resulted in the proliferation of so-called combo guards at the point guard position. More explosive and athletic point guards focus on scoring as opposed to play-making, forgoing assists and ball-movement, and often defense, for higher scoring numbers. Young players who are relatively short are now developing the scoring aspects of their skill-sets, whereas previously these players would find it difficult to enter the NBA without true point guard skills. These combo point guards can surprise defenses. Instead of passing after bringing up the ball they quickly drive to the basket or step back for an outside shot. There are some disadvantages to this style of play. A point guard often controls the offense and he also controls who gets the ball and who doesn't, as this type of controlling style of play is necessary to control the tempo of a game. Scoring point guards typically look to score first, thus preventing teammates from getting the ball. This can cause other players to become dis-involved in the offense. Even so, combo guards still require above-average passing skill, but not as much as possessed by "pure" point guards (which is what those in the traditional mold of a point guard are referred to).

PaytonHeat
Gary Payton, a point guard known for defensive prowess.

A point guard primarily defends on the perimeter, just as he primarily plays on the perimeter on offense. On defense, the point guard is tasked with making the opposing point guard as ineffective as possible. A defensive point guard will try to accomplish this with constant pressure on the ball, making it difficult to maintain possession. A defensive point guard will also pressure opponents in passing lanes in an attempt to generate steals and scoring opportunities for his own team.

See also

References

  • The Basketball Handbook (pg 14) (2004). Lee H. Rose ISBN 0-7360-4906-1

External links

Basketball positions

The five basketball positions normally employed by organized basketball teams are the point guard (PG), the shooting guard

(SG), the small forward (SF), the power forward (PF), and the center (C).

Typically the point guard is the leader of the team on the court. This position requires substantial ball handling skills and the ability to facilitate the team during a play. The shooting guard, as the name implies, is often the best shooter. As well as being capable of shooting accurately from longer distances, this position tends to also be the best defender on the team. The small forward often has an aggressive approach to the basket when handling the ball. The small forward is also known to make cuts to the basket in efforts to get open for shots. The power forward and the center are usually called the "frontcourt", often acting as their team's primary rebounders or shot blockers, or receiving passes to take inside shots. The center is typically the larger of the two.

Historically, only three positions were recognized (two guards, two forwards, and one center) based on where they played on the court: Guards generally played outside and away from the hoop and forwards played outside and near the baseline, with the center usually positioned in the key. During the 1980s, team strategy evolved after the three-point shot was added to the game. More specialized roles developed, resulting in the five position designations used today. However, individual team strategy and availability of personnel can alter the positions used by a particular team. For example, the dribble-drive motion offense and the Princeton offense use four interchangeable guards and one center. This set is also known as a "four-in and one-out" play scheme. Other combinations are also prevalent.

Besides the five basic positions, some teams use non-standard or hybrid positions, such as the point forward, a hybrid small forward/point guard; the swingman, a hybrid small forward/shooting guard; the big, a hybrid power forward/center; and the stretch four, a power forward with the shooting range of typical shooting guards.

Bob Cousy Award

The Bob Cousy Award presented by The College of the Holy Cross (or Bob Cousy Collegiate Point Guard of the Year Award) is an annual basketball award given by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame to the top men's collegiate point guard. It is named after six-time National Basketball Association (NBA) champion Bob Cousy, who played point guard for the Boston Celtics from 1950 to 1963. Cousy won six championships with the Celtics.Annually, a list of players is nominated by college head coaches, members of College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA), and members of the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC). A screening committee of CoSIDA members reviews the nominations, and selects 16 players from each division (12 from National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I, and two each from Division II and III). A selection committee appointed by the Hall then selects the winner. This 30-member committee is composed of Hall of Famers, head coaches, sports information directors, the media, and Cousy himself.When Maryland's Greivis Vásquez won the award in 2010, the Venezuelan became the first player born outside the U.S. to receive this award. The University of North Carolina has fielded the greatest number of award winners (3), with Raymond Felton winning the award in 2005, Ty Lawson receiving the honor in 2009 and Kendall Marshall winning in 2012.

Boston Celtics all-time roster

The following is a list of players, both past and current, who appeared in at least one regular season or playoff game for the Boston Celtics NBA franchise.

Combo guard

A combo guard is a basketball player who combines the attributes of a point guard (1) and shooting guard (2), but does not necessarily fit the standard description of either position. Such guards are usually within the 6' 2" (1.88 m) and 6' 4" (1.93 m) height range. Most combo guards tend to be between point and shooting guards in terms of height, although some possess the height of a point or shooting guard specifically which affects how each plays.

Combo guards became prominent in the 1990s, when players such as Allen Iverson and Penny Hardaway were switched between playing point guard and shooting guard, depending on offensive and defensive situations. Combo guards use their ball-handling skills to bring the ball up the court and set up teammates, while also having the ability to shoot well.

The best combo guards use their "in-between" height and athleticism to their own advantage: smaller point guards will use speed and agility to run past bigger players, while bigger shooting guards will shoot over the top of smaller players with their jump shots.

Historically, combo guards have been viewed as difficult for coaches to fit into an offensive system; however, combo guards have more recently become an important part of basketball, especially in the NBA. Dwyane Wade, a shooting guard with point-guard-like ball handling, led the Miami Heat to their first-ever NBA Championship in 2006, and won the Finals MVP award for the same championship series. In addition, the shift in the sport from a fundamental-driven style of play to a more scoring-oriented one means that the inferior passing ability of such guards is not viewed as a serious detriment. This shift is in part explained by hand-checking rules instituted by the NBA in 2007, which makes it a foul for a defender to use his hands to impede an offensive player. This allowed many smaller, weaker combo guards to use their speed to drive around stronger, taller players. In fact, many shorter young players (6' 2" or shorter) focus on developing their scoring abilities, whereas previously they would have to be proper point guards with the innate ability to pass to succeed in the professional leagues. For example on that end, Allen Iverson is 6' 0" (1.83 m) tall, but given his shoot-first mentality, despite his exceptional ball-handling skills, he started playing as a shooting guard. He was rated as the fifth-greatest shooting guard of all time by ESPN in 2008. Other examples of combo guards are Jerry West, Jason Terry, Monta Ellis, Goran Dragic, Lou Williams, Juan Carlos Navarro, Avery Bradley, Marcus Smart, Victor Oladipo, Zach LaVine, Joe Dumars, and Jeff Hornacek.

This is in contrast to "true" (or "pure") point guards such as Magic Johnson, John Stockton, Isiah Thomas, Steve Nash, Jason Kidd, Chris Paul, Rajon Rondo, John Wall, Kevin Johnson and Ricky Rubio. These players exhibit a pass-first mentality, value assists and steals over points, and embrace the responsibility of playmaker rather than finisher. They conform to the perception that a point guard's duties are to direct the offense, distribute the ball, create scoring opportunities for others, and attempt the shot only if there are no open teammates to be found.

Some players, for example James Harden, Devin Booker, Manu Ginóbili, Tyreke Evans, Shaun Livingston, Jordan Clarkson, Jamal Crawford, Greivis Vasquez, and Rodney Stuckey, have the requisite size for a shooting guard (6' 5" or taller), but due to their above-average ball-handling and playmaking ability, are used as combo guards or even as swingmen.

In the Euroleague, the most notable examples are Vassilis Spanoulis, who has led his team to 3 Euroleague championships, and Sergio Llull, who has led Real Madrid to win Euroleague last season (2015) and nearly joined Houston Rockets that year before signing renewal with his lifelong team. Other examples include American-born Macedonian player, Lester "Bo" McCalebb.

FIBA EuroStars

FIBA EuroStars was an annual event, organized by FIBA Europe, as a showcase basketball game, from the 1996–97 season, until the 1999–00 season. Commonly considered as the European equivalent of the NBA All-Star Game, the FIBA EuroStars game featured the season's best players, from both the European-wide top-tier level EuroLeague, and the European-wide 2nd-tier level FIBA Saporta Cup. Diversity was also paramount in the selection process, which aimed at allowing several different European basketball schools to be represented.

FIBA EuroStars was the replacement All-European Team selection and all-star game of the original FIBA Festival (1964–1995).

Gary Payton

Gary Dwayne Payton Sr. (born July 23, 1968) is an American retired professional basketball player. He started at the point guard position. He is best known for his 13-year tenure with the Seattle SuperSonics, and holds Seattle franchise records in points, assists, and steals. He also played with the Milwaukee Bucks, Los Angeles Lakers, Boston Celtics and Miami Heat, the last with whom he won an NBA championship. He was nicknamed "The Glove" for his excellent defensive abilities. He was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame on September 8, 2013.Payton is widely considered one of the best point guards of all time and is the only point guard to win the NBA Defensive Player of the Year award. He was selected to the NBA All-Defensive First Team nine times, an NBA record he shares with Michael Jordan, Kevin Garnett and Kobe Bryant. He was also a nine-time NBA All-Star and a nine-time All-NBA Team member.

Considered the "NBA's reigning high scorer among point guards" in his prime, Payton is referred to as "probably as complete a guard as there ever was" by Basketball Hall of Famer Gail Goodrich.

Haggerty Award

The Haggerty Award is given to the All-New York Metropolitan NCAA Division I men's college basketball player of the year, presented by the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) and the Met Basketball Writers Association (MBWA). First presented in 1936, it is arguably the oldest and most prestigious award given to a metropolitan area player.

The award has gone to players from 15 Division I schools. St. John's University in Jamaica, New York has the most at 27, more than twice the nine awards received by players from number two Seton Hall University.

Three players won the award three times: Jim McMillian from Columbia University (1968–1970), Chris Mullin of St. John's (1983–1985) and Charles Jenkins of Hofstra (2009–2011). McMillian would go on to win the 1972 NBA Championship with the Los Angeles Lakers; Mullin went on to win two Olympic gold medals (1984, 1992) with Team USA, was a five-time NBA All-Star and was elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2011; and Jenkins has played in the NBA and Europe.

Isaiah Thomas (basketball)

Isaiah Jamar Thomas (born February 7, 1989) is an American professional basketball player for the Denver Nuggets of the National Basketball Association (NBA). The 5-foot-9-inch (1.75 m) point guard played three years of college basketball for the Washington Huskies and was a three-time all-conference selection in the Pac-10. After electing to forgo his senior year in college, Thomas was selected by the Sacramento Kings with the final pick in the 2011 NBA draft. He spent three seasons with the Kings before joining the Phoenix Suns in 2014. Thomas was traded to the Boston Celtics in February 2015 and went on to earn NBA All-Star nods in 2016 and 2017, as well as All-NBA Team honors in 2017 after leading the Celtics to the first seed in the Eastern Conference. In August 2017, he was dealt to the Cleveland Cavaliers, who traded him midseason to the Los Angeles Lakers.

Joe Dumars

Joe Dumars III (born May 24, 1963) is an American former basketball player in the National Basketball Association.

He could play either shooting guard or point guard on offense and was a highly effective defender. He played for the Detroit Pistons from 1985 until 1999. During the late 1980s and early 1990s, Dumars and Isiah Thomas combined to form one of the best backcourts in NBA history. Initially a shooting guard, Dumars moved to point guard following Thomas' retirement in 1994, sharing ball-handling duties with Grant Hill. Dumars was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006. Dumars served as the President of Basketball Operations for the Detroit Pistons from 2000 to 2014.

NABC Player of the Year

The NABC Player of the Year is an award given annually by the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) to recognize the top player in men's college basketball. The award has been given since the 1974–75 season to National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I basketball players. The association added awards for Division II and Division III players in 1983, and for National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and junior college players in 2008. The awards have previously been sponsored by State Farm Insurance.

In Division I, Duke has the most all-time winners with six. Their rival, North Carolina, as well as Kansas are tied for second with four winners. There have been three ties for NABC Player of the Year (2002, 2004, 2006), and only two players have won the award multiple times (Jay Williams and Ralph Sampson).

In Division II, Virginia Union has four winners, the most all-time, and is followed by Kentucky Wesleyan which has three. Only one tie has occurred (2006), while three players have won the award more than once (Stan Gouard, Earl Jones, John Smith).

In Division III, Potsdam State has the most all-time winners with three, while six other schools are tied for second with two winners apiece. There have been two ties (2007, 2010) and four repeat winners (Leroy Witherspoon, Andrew Olson, Aaron Walton-Moss and Joey Flannery).

At the NAIA level, there is a distinction between NAIA Division I and NAIA Division II winners. Since the awards began in 2008, no school or individual player has received the award multiple times. In junior college, every winner has been a sophomore and has gone on to play at an NCAA Division I school after their community college careers have ended.

NBA Most Valuable Player Award

The National Basketball Association Most Valuable Player Award (MVP) is an annual National Basketball Association (NBA) award given since the 1955–56 season to the best performing player of the regular season. The winner receives the Maurice Podoloff Trophy, which is named in honor of the first commissioner (then president) of the NBA, who served from 1946 until 1963. Until the 1979–80 season, the MVP was selected by a vote of NBA players. Since the 1980–81 season, the award is decided by a panel of sportswriters and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada.

Each member of the voting panel casts a vote for first to fifth place selections. Each first-place vote is worth 10 points; each second-place vote is worth seven; each third-place vote is worth five, fourth-place is worth three and fifth-place is worth one. Starting from 2010, one ballot was cast by fans through online voting. The player with the highest point total wins the award. As of June 2018, the current holder of the award is James Harden of the Houston Rockets.

Every player who has won this award and has been eligible for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame has been inducted. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar won the award a record six times. He is also the only player to win the award despite his team not making the playoffs back in the 1975–76 season. Both Bill Russell and Michael Jordan won the award five times, while Wilt Chamberlain and LeBron James won the award four times. Russell and James are the only players to have won the award four times in five seasons. Moses Malone, Larry Bird and Magic Johnson each won the award three times, while Bob Pettit, Karl Malone, Tim Duncan, Steve Nash and Stephen Curry have each won it twice. Only two rookies have won the award: Chamberlain in the 1959–60 season and Wes Unseld in the 1968–69 season. Hakeem Olajuwon of Nigeria, Duncan of the U.S. Virgin Islands, Nash of Canada and Dirk Nowitzki of Germany are the only MVP winners considered "international players" by the NBA.Curry in 2015–16 is the only player to have won the award unanimously. Shaquille O'Neal in 1999–2000 and James in 2012–13 are the only two players to have fallen one vote shy of a unanimous selection, both receiving 120 of 121 votes. Since the 1975–76 season, only two players have been named MVP for a season in which their team failed to win at least 50 regular-season games—Moses Malone (twice, 1978–79 and 1981–82) and Russell Westbrook (2016–17).

Nike Hoop Summit

The Nike Hoop Summit is an international men's basketball all-star game sponsored by Nike, held once a year since 1995, except from 2001-2003, which features the USA Basketball Men's Junior Select Team against a World Select Team of international players. The players demonstrate their skills and hope to attract attention from either NBA scouts or colleges. A number of current NBA players have participated in this event in the past.

In the 2010 edition of the event, Enes Kanter scored 34 points and surpassed the event's record of 33 points set by Dirk Nowitzki in 1998. Bismack Biyombo recorded the first triple-double in Hoop Summit history in 2011 with 12 points, 11 rebounds, and 10 blocks. In 2012, Shabazz Muhammad scored 35 points to break Enes Kanter's Hoop Summit scoring record.13 players, all members of the World Team have been selected to play in two Hoop Summits: Jovo Stanojević (1995 & 1996), Alexandre Bachminov (1996 & 1997), Matthew Nielsen (1997 & 1998), Antonis Fotsis, (1998 & 1999), Boštjan Nachbar (1999 & 2000), Olumide Oyedeji (1999 & 2000), Alexis Ajinça (2007 & 2008), Dario Šarić (2011 & 2012), Andrew Wiggins (2012 & 2013), Karl-Anthony Towns (2013 & 2014), Jamal Murray (2014 & 2015), Thon Maker (2015 & 2016), and R. J. Barrett (2017 & 2018).

Although it previously rotated American cities, the event has been hosted in Portland, Oregon since 2008.

Oscar Robertson Trophy

The Oscar Robertson Trophy is given out annually to the outstanding men's college basketball player by the United States Basketball Writers Association (USBWA). The trophy is considered to be the oldest of its kind and has been given out since 1959.

Raymond Felton

Raymond Bernard Felton, Jr. (born June 26, 1984) is an American professional basketball player for the Oklahoma City Thunder of the National Basketball Association (NBA). Felton played college basketball for the University of North Carolina under head coach Roy Williams. At North Carolina, Felton led the Tar Heels to a national championship before declaring for the NBA draft. Felton was drafted fifth overall in the 2005 NBA draft. Over his career, Felton has been a member of the Charlotte Bobcats, New York Knicks (twice), Denver Nuggets, Portland Trail Blazers, Dallas Mavericks and Los Angeles Clippers. He plays the point guard position.

Robert V. Geasey Trophy

The Robert V. Geasey Trophy is awarded to the most outstanding basketball player in the Philadelphia Big 5, an informal association of college athletic programs in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. It is not an MVP award and does not represent the entire regular season's most valuable player; the award goes simply to the best basketball player for Big 5 games played that season. It has been given since 1956 and is granted by the Herb Good Basketball Club. Members of the Philadelphia Big 5 are La Salle University, the University of Pennsylvania, Saint Joseph's University, Temple University and Villanova University.

Sacramento Kings all-time roster

The Sacramento Kings is an American professional basketball team based in Sacramento, California. They play in the Pacific Division of the Western Conference in the National Basketball Association (NBA). They began as the Rochester Royals (based in Rochester, New York) in the Basketball Association of America (forerunner of the NBA) in 1948. The Royals moved to Cincinnati, Ohio in 1957. In 1972, the team moved again, to a primary home in Kansas City, Missouri (and a secondary home in Omaha, Nebraska) and were renamed as the Kansas City-Omaha Kings. The Kings moved to its current home in Sacramento, California in 1985.

This article is a list of players, both past and present, who have appeared at least in one game.

Shooting guard

The shooting guard (SG), also known as the two or off guard, is one of the five traditional positions in a regulation basketball game. A shooting guard's main objective is to score points for his team and steal the ball on defense. Some teams ask their shooting guards to bring up the ball as well; these players are known colloquially as combo guards. A player who can switch between playing shooting guard and small forward is known as a swingman. In the NBA, shooting guards usually range from 6' 3" (1.91 m) to 6' 7" (2.01 m) and 5' 9" (1.75 m) to 6' 0" (1.83 m) in the WNBA.

Southern Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Year

The Southern Conference Men's Basketball Player of the Year is a basketball award given to the Southern Conference's (SoCon) most outstanding player. The award was first given following the 1951–52 season. Fred Hetzel of Davidson is the only player to have won the award three times (1963–1965). Fifteen other players have won the award twice, most recently done by Fletcher Magee of Wofford (2018, 2019).

Davidson has the most all-time winners with 13, but it left the SoCon after the 2013–14 season to join the Atlantic 10 Conference. Among current members, Furman leads with 12 winners. There have also been nine ties in the award's history, but only one (1970–71 season) which occurred prior to the 1989–90 season. That season was the first for two separate Player of the Year awards—one by the Southern Conference men's basketball coaches, and the other by conference media members. When both the coaches and media select the same player, he is the consensus conference player of the year.

The only current members that have never had a winner are Samford and Mercer. Both are among the SoCon's newer members, having respectively joined in 2008 and 2014.

Turnover (basketball)

In basketball, a turnover occurs when a team loses possession of the ball to the opposing team before a player takes a shot at their team's basket. This can result from the ball being stolen, the player making mistakes such as stepping out of bounds, illegal screen, a double dribble, having a pass intercepted, throwing the ball out of bounds, three-second violation, five-second violation, or committing an error such as traveling, a shot clock violation, palming, a backcourt violation, or committing an offensive foul. A technical foul against a team that is in possession of the ball is a blatant example of a turnover, because the opponent is awarded a free throw in addition to possession of the ball.

Some players are prone to turnovers because of having poor court vision or making mental mistakes. Also, many superstars average more turnovers than anybody on their team as they will often be handling the ball. A point guard may often have the most turnovers because they are usually the player that possesses the ball most for their respective team.

According to Boston Globe sportswriter Bob Ryan, the concept of the turnover was first formulated by his colleague Jack Barry. Turnovers were first officially recorded in the NBA during the 1977–78 season and ABA during the 1967–68 season.

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