Nash, James eyeing teammates

Certain players may not handle the ball that often, but are great at finding the open man when they get it.

Updated: March 4, 2005, 3:24 PM ET
By John Hollinger | ESPN Insider
Who's the best passer in basketball?

That seemingly simple question can generate a multitude of responses. The obvious first guess is the league leader in assists, Steve Nash. But does that distinction really mean he's the game's best passer? After all, Andre Miller led the league in assists three years ago, and nobody was comparing him to John Stockton.

For more evidence that you won't find the answer by looking at the league leaders in assists, check out some of the other names near the top. They include players like Stephon Marbury (third) and Allen Iverson (fifth), both of whom seem to greatly prefer shooting to passing. Then there's Steve Francis (ninth), of whose passing skills the Magic are so enamored that they have moved him off the point.