Golden State Warriors guard Monta Ellis well on the way to elite status

Many laughed when Warriors guard Monta Ellis called himself the
second-best player in the league last year, behind Kobe Bryant and ahead
of LeBron James.

Certainly, such a ranking would still unanimously be considered too high
by objective basketball minds. But five games into this season, Ellis’
self-evaluation seems less delusional and more like extreme confidence.
The way he’s dominated, the way he’s led the Warriors (4-1) to their
best start in 16 years, Ellis’ being mentioned among the NBA elite isn’t
as laughable.

"It’s all coming together for him," Warriors coach Keith Smart said. "He’s moving into another group, another area with his play."

Ellis has Warriors fans abuzz and, perhaps most important, management in awe. The Warriors still are interested in landing another difference maker, but, according to multiple team sources, there are only a handful of players who would make the Warriors consider trading Ellis.

That means, though the trade deadline is three months away, a trade involving Ellis is looking unlikely. The sources said Warriors’ brass are loving the new Ellis, his pairing with point guard Stephen Curry and how he is leading the team.

"He’s one of the elite players in this league," said Warriors small forward Dorell Wright, who won a championship alongside perennial All-NBA guard Dwyane Wade.

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