What Is a Point Guard in Basketball? Point Guard Responsibilities and Skills

There are a total of five positions in basketball in which point guard is considered one of the leading positions in the game. The point guard position has other names like one or point. A point guard role is very specialized and important. The point guard of the team may be the shortest player but specialized in ball handling and passing. A point guard is fast, quick, and best at driving the ball. The point guard role is more crucial than the other roles therefore point guards are best known as coaches on the floor, the heart of the team, and floor general. The point guards are good at directing plays, assists, making positions, and creating shots for the team and for themselves.

Point Guard in Basketball

Point guards enhance team efficiency by studying the game and they also identify defense weaknesses and own offense strengths. They are good at hitting shots inside the three-point line and layups. The point guard runs the offense, tries to take possession of the ball, and defends the opponent point guard. A point guard is responsible for keeping certain things in mind like a shot clock, game clock, score, and remaining timeouts for both teams. Let’s dig deep to know about the position of a point guard in basketball.

Point Guard in Basketball Responsibilities

Point guard responsibilities are very much different from other positions as this role required to do multiple tasks. The point guard is not only responsible to put the ball into the basket but he has to act as a team leader. There are two types of point guards that actively play an important role in the game. The first type of point guard is a scoring point guard and the other one is the facilitator point guard. A scoring point guard is able to shoot from a three-point or mid-range distance. The scoring point guard is skilled in scoring around the basket with the help of floaters, acrobatic layups, and dunks. Stephen Curry and Damian Lillard are considered the best scoring point guards.

A facilitator point guard or a coach on the floor has a better understanding of the game due to a high basketball IQ. The facilitator point guard is best in executing the half-court set offense. This type of point guard understands each player’s position on the court. Chris Paul is best known for being a facilitator-type point guard.

1. Point Guard Offense Responsibilities

The point guard in the offense is responsible for

  • Controlling the ball
  • Pace Controlling
  • Passing and Scoring
  • Brings the ball down to start an offensive play
  • Maintaining possession of the ball
  • Lead the offense

The point guard has a leadership role in the offense as he has to execute the team’s offense by controlling the ball and passing it to the right player. It is their prime responsibility to create scoring opportunities for their team and for themselves therefore they are often called the coach on the floor. It is the point guard’s duty to bring the ball down to the court to start an offensive play after the opponent scores. Passing, ball handling, speed, and court vision are essential skills for an offensive point guard. A point guard has the best view of the game due to its placement on the perimeter of the play.

The point guard has to maintain possession of the ball under pressure conditions from the opponents. A point guard maintains possession of the ball in crowded spaces and advances the ball quickly. A point guard is able to drive to the basket in a half-court set due to his quickness and ball-handling skills which are essential for a successful offense. One of the main duties of a point guard in offense is to pass and score.

3. Point Guard Defense Responsibilities

The point guard in the defense is responsible for

  • Guarding the offensive point guard
  • Making Steals
  • Make it hard for offense to maintain the possession of the ball
  • Generate steals

A defensive point guard defends in the perimeter because they primarily play on the on offense perimeter. While on defense the point guard primary responsibility is to weaken the offensive point guard. The defensive point guard put pressure on the ball and makes it hard for offensive point guard to maintain the possession of the ball. The defensive point guard is also responsible to create pressure on opponents in passing lanes in order to generate steals and scoring opportunities for their team. In NBA Marcus Smart, and Chris Paul are best known for their defensive point guard role.

Recommend to read: Point vs Shooting Guard

Skills Required to Become an Exceptional Point Guard in Basketball

You have to be mastered certain skills in order to become an elite point guard. If you don’t have this particular set of skills then you cannot be a good point guard. What are these skills and why it is important to equip yourself with these skills? Let’s check out the below details to find the answer.

1. The Leadership Qualities

A point guard is considered to be the leader of the floor or coach on the floor therefore he is responsible for the whole team. The point guard leads the whole team and he is responsible to take the ball up to the court to get the offense to begin. The main role of a point guard is to create score opportunities by passing the ball to other team players. Leadership skills are a must for a point guard role.

2. Ball Handling

Ball-handling skills are essential to being a good point guard. A point guard maintains possession of the ball and passes it to the other teammates. Your ball-handling skills must be good to become an outstanding point guard player.

3. Passing and Dribbling Skill

You must be mastered your passing and dribbling skills. A point guard must be able to dribble at full speed to pass the ball to other teammates. Point guard passing skills must be accurate in order to win the game.

4. Speedy or Quickness

Speed plays a vital role in a point guard position. The point guard can easily dribble and pass the ball in speed while he is also able to drive to the basket in a half-court set due to his quickness that’s why speed is important for a point guard player.

5. Mentally and Physically Tough

A point guard must be physically and mentally tough. A point guard has to make decisions quickly and lead the team. A mentally strong point guard can easily maintain the pressure and can execute his plans. If he is physically tough he can easily put the pressure on opponent team because of his dribbling and passing techniques.

Frequent Asked Questions

Who is the best point guard in NBA?

There are so many players who play as point guards but I will tell you about the best point guard in NBA. 

  • Stephen Curry
  • Luka Doncic
  • Damian Lillard
  • Kyrie Irving
  • Trae Young

What is the most important role in basketball?

In five positions of basketball point guard position is considered to be the most important. A point guard is a coach on the floor who is responsible to do multiple tasks. He has to execute the plans, check out the court setup, direct plays, assist, make positions, and create shots for teammates.

What are the characteristics of a point guard?

A point guard must have leadership skills, must be quick, and good at dribbling and passing. A point guard needs to be physically and mentally tough so he can bear the pressure of the game. The point guard’s IQ must be high in order to understand the game as a coach on the floor.


A good point guard increases the efficiency of the team. The point guard is undoubtedly the main player of the team who runs the whole team. The point guard role is vital in both offense and defense. You cannot win a game without the best point guard play. You can be an exceptional point guard player with a high IQ, leadership qualities, pressure handling, and quickness. In this article, you will find every single detail about the role of a point guard in the game.

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