Unless the teams with the rights to Kevin Durant, Anthony Davis or LeBron James are calling the Wizards' line and offering up their respective stars, John Wall remains untouchable for opposing general managers. Wall's value has always been tremendous for the Wizards. That was made evident two years ago when the Wizards had a 5-28 record without him on the floor because of injury. This season, his value is being seen in a different way.
No one in the league creates more points through assists than Wall. He currently is leading the league in assists averaging 10.1 per game and those assists are creating 23.5 points per game for the Wizards. When combined with his individual 17.4 point per game average, Wall is accounting for 41 percent of the Wizards' scoring offense.
Wall has always been an excellent passer, but the knock on him when he came into the league teams was that he couldn't shoot. He also was not a good finisher at the rim at the start of his career. Here is the shot chart from Wall's rookie season where Wall only shot 41 percent from the floor.
Now, if we look forward to this moment, Wall has become an efficient shooter on the right side of the floor and become much more selective with his shooting. He's shooting a cool 41 percent from midrange overall, and he's absolutely killing it in on the right baseline area of the floor. He's also improved as a three point shooter.
Of course, as a number one pick this is likely the natural progression you will see in most players, but Wall pushed himself further than some pundits thought he would go. He's become one of the better point guards in the league and is still improving as a player.
Wall has worked on his in-between game and become a beast from two-point range where he's shooting 50 percent overall. He's shooting a career highs in regular field goal percentage, true shooting percentage and effective field goal percentage. He's posting a net rating of 7.3 and carries tremendous burdens on both ends.
More on Wall's defensive growth
More on Wall's defensive growth
Wall has also become a more consistent defender. After last season where he had flashes of defensive excellence but got lost playing free safety in the middle of the floor more than you'd like, Wall has emerged as one of the best defenders, if not the best defender, at his position in the league.
Overall, Wall is 24th in the league in defensive real plus-minus with a rating of 2.66. That is tops in the league, by far, at the point guard position. The next closest point guard defender to Wall is Michael Carter-Williams, who is posting a 1.64 rating. This stat doesn't say it all when it comes to the defensive end, but it gives us a glimpse into how good players rate on good defensive teams.
Only seven players have averaged at least 17 points per game, 10 assists and 1.8 steals throughout an entire season. Here is the short list. John Wall is one of them.
Only Paul, Thomas and Stockton have accomplished this feat more than once. All of these players were extremely valuable assets to their teams and four of them became Hall of Famers. Johnson has a finalist for the Hall of Fame before and Michael Adams had a tremendous season when he accomplished it on that 1990 Nuggets team.
For Wall to be mentioned in the same breath as some of those players is a tremendous feat in its own right. But for him to be producing on that level shows how far he has come as a player.
Wall has some subtle improvements he still needs to make in his game. As good as he is at jump passing, he falls too in love with it sometimes and it can lead to turnovers. His assist to turnover ratio is a solid 2.7, but to be considered elite it needs to elevate to getting above three.
The Wizards have not really had an above-average offense since they've drafted Wall and that isn't completely his fault, but cutting down on turnovers and valuing possessions a bit more would help. That is a difficult thing to do when you're touching the ball as much as anyone in the league outside of Chris Paul, but if he can pull that off he'll be considered elite among the elite.
Overall, though, Wall is an excellent player and has chiseled himself into one of the best in the league. There is a legitimate argument that Wall is a top 10 player in today's NBA, and three years ago when he was returning from injury, that probably would have sounded insane. But here we are--Washington has its very own superstar once again. And it only gets better from here.