Who Has The Best Handles In The NBA?

Key Takeaways:

  • Ball handling skills have become increasingly important in the NBA, and non-guard players are also displaying impressive ball handling abilities.
  • The top 10 best ball handlers in the NBA today include Kyrie Irving, Kemba Walker, Chris Paul, and Stephen Curry. Additionally, there are several underrated ball handlers who deserve recognition.
  • In NBA history, Bob Cousy, Jason Williams, Pete Maravich, Allen Iverson, and Tim Hardaway are just a few of the players who are considered to have had the best handles.


NBA players with impressive ball handling are sought-after and admired. Therefore, we are delving into the top athletes with the best handles. This article will assess the strategies and play of these sportspeople who show fantastic control, mobility, and originality on the court.

It’s obvious that ball-handling is an important ability that distinguishes an average player from an extraordinary one. Great ball handling helps players cope with pressure, make daring moves, and be influential. Although various players are famous for their great ball handling, only a few have succeeded in this respect.

In the NBA, numerous capable ball handlers exist. However, some stand out among the others. These players have unique handling styles and techniques that have mesmerized fans throughout their careers. Here, we will explore every one of them and analyze their game to understand what makes them so good. By analyzing, we hope to provide insight into their ball handling styles and encourage aspiring basketball players to up their game.

Evolution of Ball Handling in the NBA

Over the years, the NBA has seen a significant transformation in its playing style, and ball handling has played a significant role. In this section, we will explore the evolution of ball handling in the NBA and the increasing importance of this skill in today’s game. We’ll also look at some examples where non-guard players have excelled at ball handling.

Increasing Importance of Ball Handling

The NBA has seen an upsurge in the value of ball handling. It’s not only guards that must handle the ball correctly. Every team member must be able to efficiently execute plays. For fast-paced play and more action on both ends, players need to be adept at advancing up-court while controlling their dribble.

Non-guard players such as Nikola Jokic have become significant contributors regarding ball handling. Teams seek out these versatile players who possess exceptional handling skills. In short, ball handling is essential for playing competitive basketball.

Examples of Non-Guard Ball Handlers

Non-guard ball handlers are crucial in basketball nowadays. The NBA has seen a surge in players with remarkable ball-handling skills. These players can move around the court without dropping possession and generate scoring chances for their team by stretching out defences.

Five of these skilled non-guard ball handlers are Nikola Jokic, Ben Simmons, Luka Doncic, Bam Adebayo and Giannis Antetokounmpo. All of them possess the capacity to tackle stress with accuracy and poise when running up and down the court.

Jokic, dubbed “The Joker”, is one of the best non-guard ball handlers in NBA history, even when he plays as a center. Doncic’s excellent vision on passes makes him a valuable asset. Simmons brings diversity to his team with his huge point guard form which can swiftly turn into power forward if required. Adebayo’s remarkable mid-range shooting skills, plus his anchor-like defence, makes him unpredictable. Finally, Antetokounmpo’s awesome athleticism makes him unstoppable when driving to the basket.

Non-guard ball handlers add energy to the game and are becoming more common in the NBA. Thus, teams will keep on depending on their abilities and imagination to gain victory over their opponents.

Top 10 Best Ball Handlers in the NBA Today

With the game of basketball evolving rapidly, so does the skillset of its players. In this section, we will be exploring the top 10 best ball handlers in the NBA today.

Kyrie Irving

In the NBA, when you say handles, the first name that comes to mind for many fans is Kyrie Irving. The guy is a magician with the ball as he can weave through traffic and score at will.

He’s got such a deep bag that he once crossed through nearly the whole Team USA in one play. He started with crossing Kobe and Durant then made a spin against James Harden until he passes it to a teammate.

This play alone deserves his number one spot on this list.

Kemba Walker and Chris Paul

Basketball needs superb ball-handling skills. In the NBA, guards must show outstanding proficiency. Kemba Walker and Chris Paul are two such elite ball handlers who have become game-changers.

Kemba Walker’s lightning-fast hands and clever dribbling have enabled him to score 20+ points per game for seven seasons in a row. He also ranks fourth in the league among active players for assists per game.

Chris Paul is renowned as one of the best pure point guards in history due to his signature moves like the “Shammgod” crossover and high basketball IQ. Both players’ awesome playmaking abilities have earned them many awards throughout their careers. These include multiple All-Star appearances, All-NBA team selections, and even Olympic gold medals.

In 2019, Kemba Walker was traded to the Boston Celtics to fill a huge gap caused by Kyrie Irving’s leaving. Chris Paul has had stints with Los Angeles Clippers and Houston Rockets before joining Phoenix Suns in 2020. At 36 years old, he’s still playing his sixteenth season in the NBA, showing that he still has it.

Stephen Curry

It’s almost unfair that the best shooter in history also has insane handles. But that’s just the way Curry is!

In fact, what makes him deadly when he’s not shooting the ball is his ability to get to the basket. He can easily move past any defender – even with just a bit of space.

His handles may not be as flashy as Kyrie but it’s as every bit as effective. He uses it a lot when he’s on iso but he can also catch defenders off guard with his off-ball movement. Combine that with his other skills and you can see why defenders get tired of guarding him.

Underrated Ball Handlers

Underrated ball handlers are often neglected, even though they have remarkable dribbling capabilities. These players are essential for their team’s success, even if they’re not seen as elite ball handlers.

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander from the OKC Thunder has already made a name for himself, thanks to his impressive dribbling. TJ McConnell from the Indiana Pacers is another underrated player who is very smart in basketball, and can control the game with his passing and dribbling.

Zach LaVine from the Chicago Bulls is often forgotten because of his scoring talent. However, he has amazing ball handling skills, making him a great all-round player. De’Aaron Fox from the Sacramento Kings is well-known for his speed, and his dribbling has improved a lot in the last few years.

Ricky Rubio from the Minnesota Timberwolves may not be showy, but his experience as a point guard gives him good ball handling abilities. He can create chances for his teammates. D’Angelo Russell from the Golden State Warriors can be inconsistent, but his talent in dribbling and creating shots for himself and his teammates is undeniable.

On top of that, there are many other players in the NBA who are underrated when it comes to their ball handling skills. Even though they may not be top-10 grade, they still offer value to their teams through their ball handling ability.

In conclusion, it’s important to recognize these underrated ball handlers and appreciate their talents.

Ranking the Top 10 Ball Handlers in NBA History

Ranking the Top 10 Ball Handlers in NBA History, get ready to witness some of the most jaw-dropping moves and mind-boggling maneuvers ever performed on the court. From legendary icons like Bob Cousy and Pete Maravich to modern-day marvels like Tim Hardaway and Allen Iverson, we’ll explore the dazzling skills and signature styles of the athletes who have revolutionized ball handling in the game of basketball. See who makes our list as we celebrate the crème-de-la-crème of NBA ball handlers.

Bob Cousy

Bob Cousy was a basketball genius. His flashy dribbling and ability to create scoring chances for his teammates made him hard to guard. He changed speeds and directions, innovating ball-handling in the NBA. He was also a great passer and scorer.

Cousy played 13 seasons with the Boston Celtics and won 6 NBA championships. He was named an All-Star 13 times and won the MVP Award in 1957.

Many players have tried to copy Cousy’s style of play. He had a huge impact on basketball!

Jason Williams

Jason Williams, AKA “White Chocolate“, was an awesome basketballer renowned for his impressive dribbling. He had signature moves like the elbow pass, behind-the-back dribble, and no-look pass. His showy playstyle was fun to watch and earned him the title of master baller.

He was also sly and quick with the ball, often leaving folks stunned with his innovative passes. His unorthodox but successful style of play helped redefine the point guard spot in the NBA, making him a legend in the game.

Pete Maravich

Pete Maravich–“Pistol Pete”–had no rival when it came to basketball in his day. His masterful passing and unique style were feared by opponents. His footwork and hesitation moves were totally unpredictable. This earned him five NBA All-Star team selections and two All-NBA First Team selections.

Maravich’s shooting prowess was also remarkable. He made long-distance shots popular before they ever became mainstream.

Maravich’s skills have made him one of the best players of all time. His ball-handling has had a huge influence on modern basketball. His legacy is extraordinary and inspiring.

Allen Iverson

Allen Iverson’s fame skyrocketed during his rookie season as a starting point guard for the Philadelphia 76ers. His speed, agility, and scoring made him a complete player. Even though he was smaller compared to other players, his 24,368 points – averaging 26.7 per game – spoke for themselves.

But Iverson’s influence exceeded his ball-handling skills. His fearless attitude, on and off the court, made him a trailblazer. People around the world imitated his iconic fashion choices. He will always be remembered as one of the best NBA players ever.

Tim Hardaway

Tim Hardaway was an incredible basketball player. His skill with the ball was unparalleled. He could make defenders look silly with his crossovers and hesitation moves. These signature moves even inspired stars like Allen Iverson.

Hardaway was more than just a flashy ball-handler though. He had great court vision. He could create scoring opportunities for himself and teammates. His skillful playmaking left a lasting impression on fans. Even today, many remember how he effortlessly moved around the court, finding angles to make beautiful passes or take shots.

Tim Hardaway was a true basketball great. He inspired generations of players with his amazing skills and style. His legacy will live on as a testament to his talent and love for the game.

Other Great Ball Handlers

These other great ball handlers have left their mark in the NBA, showcasing their impressive skills and leaving audiences in awe. These exceptional players had the talent to maneuver the ball with ease, taking on defenders with a range of dribble moves and crossovers.

  • Steve Nash – Despite being an average height for a point guard, Nash amazed on the court with his court vision and ball-handling abilities.
  • Steph Curry – His three-point shooting was lethal, but Curry also had some of the most mesmerizing handles.
  • Tracy McGrady – With his lanky frame and long wingspan, McGrady pulled off creative moves.
  • Rajon Rondo – Rondo’s style of play was unpredictable and allowed him to create space.
  • Derrick Rose – Before injuries, Rose was one of the fastest and shiftiest in the league.
  • Isiah Thomas – The former Detroit Piston was often underappreciated due to his size, but he made up for it with his agility and quickness.

The same could be said for all of these players: they had the ability to handle the ball. Whether it was through crossovers or behind-the-back passes, these athletes revolutionized point guard play.

These six stand out as some of the best ball handlers ever. Their highlight reels will continue to captivate fans around the world, and their contributions to basketball will not be forgotten.


Ball handling skills are key for a player’s success in the NBA. No matter size or position, ball handling can have a big impact on the court. Point guards, for example, must be masters of ball handling to control the offense and create scoring chances. Reference data shows that ball handling is highly sought after in the NBA and a key part of a player’s fundamentals.

Not only is ball handling vital for an individual’s success, it makes NBA games thrilling. Players with great ball handling can make amazing plays, quick crossovers, and effective passes, making the audience mesmerized. NBA has some of the greatest ball handlers of all time, adding to the entertainment value of the games. This is one of the main reasons behind the league’s popularity.

Ball handling isn’t just about individual performance, but team performance too. Players with good ball handling can create better passing opportunities, evade defenders better, and help their team. Reference data shows many players have aided their teams’ performances because of their great ball handling. These players are essential to the team’s success, even if their contributions often go unnoticed. Their ball handling skills still remain an integral part of the team’s strategy.

Leave a Comment