NBA Today: Top 5 wing defenders in the league right now
Over the past few years, wing defenders have become more in-demand in the NBA than ever before. While wing players have been historically expected to contribute on the offensive end, teams now want their wings to be able to lock down the best scorers on opposing teams, while also guarding the perimeter against the now-normal avalanche of three-point attempts.
The value placed on quality defensive wings was further highlighted last season as the Suns handed 34-year-old Trevor Ariza a one-year, $15 million contract - despite the fact that the former Houston star was clearly in decline. So with the demand for wings at an all-time high, here we will take a look at the top five wing defenders in the league right now.
#5 Danny Green - Los Angeles Lakers
The Los Angeles Lakers had one of the worst defenses during the 2018-19 season, although the addition of Danny Green has helped transform LA's defense into one of the best in the NBA. The 32-year-old has provided the team with a wing that can contest shots on the perimeter, and despite enjoying some excellent offensive performances, Green remains a defense-first focused wing.
While Green's numbers don't exactly stand out, the 32-year-old has made two All-Defensive Second Teams in the past, and the veteran excels at closing down and contesting three-pointers.
Green is also more than happy to take on the assignment of locking down the opposition's best offensive player, and he will likely be tasked with containing the likes of James Harden when the playoffs roll around. Ultimately, LA's acquisition of Green was among the offseasons most underrated moves, and he remains well in his prime.