John Wall had his best season with the Washington Wizards last year and firmly established himself as one of the elite point guards in the league.
After entering the NBA as the number one overall pick in the 2010 draft, Wall’s talent was never in question but he has struggled for consistency over the years.
But he finally silenced any doubters he had with a terrific individual campaign that resulted in success for the Wizards too.
The four-time All-Star averaged a career-high 23.1 points, 10.7 assists and a league-leading 2.0 steals per game on 45.1 percent shooting.
The 27-year-old also led Washington to its best season since 1979 as they secured a 49-33 record and reached the second round of the playoffs.
Wall was recognised for his efforts as he was named to the All-NBA Third Team and received another All-Star nod.
Heading into the new campaign, the speedy guard is full of confidence and is determined to take his game to another level.
“I feel like I am the best point guard in the Eastern Conference,” Wall said. “Maybe people didn’t get to see me on national TV as much last year, but they will this year.”
The former Kentucky star is always honest with his quotes and frequently exudes a high level of confidence and self-belief that has been transmitted to the rest of his teammates.
His claim is not a crazy one either as he was one of only three players to average 20 points and 10 assists last season along with superstars Russell Westbrook and James Harden.
Wall is not ready to rest on his laurels and has set high expectations for himself this year.
“I want to be in the MVP conversation,” Wall said. “My expectations are very high.”
But the North Carolina native knows he can only accomplish these individual goals by achieving team success with the Wizards.
The team fell just one game short of reaching the conference finals after losing a game seven to the Boston Celtics.
With the C’s securing the services of Kyrie Irving over the summer, many are expecting the east to be a two-way battle between them and the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Wall, however, believes that the Wizards should be viewed as the biggest threat to the Cavs after causing them many problems in their regular season matchups last year.
“To be honest, I think they said [to themselves] if we’re going to see them, we don’t want it to be until the East finals,” Wall said. “We were the team that gave them the most trouble in the East. That’s my opinion, some people might not agree with me.”
Washington will begin the new season with an intriguing encounter with the Philadelphia 76ers at Verizon Center.