With the evolution of the power forward position (three-pointers, stretch the floor, assists, moving the ball), we ranked the top 5 power forwards in the NBA entering the 2016-17 season.
Who is your favorite power forward in the NBA right now?
Can you give us your Top 5 Power Forwards at this moment?
Lamarcus Aldridge - Pau Gasol will now be sharing the frontcourt with him, which will result in fewer scoring opportunities for both of them.
Pau Gasol - See above.
Al Horford- Could very well be top 5 if he can mesh with youth of Bostons roster and defensive mind of Brad Stevens.
Paul Millsap- Also could be top 5, but Dwight Howard will fill Horford's spot, only demanding the ball more and possibly bringing trouble to team chemistry.
5. Kristaps Porzingis
The runner-up for Rookie of the Year will look to follow his impressive first-year campaign with, what Knicks fans hope, a breakout year. With all the boos and jeers from the crowd during the 2015 NBA draft being turned to cheers, he will seemingly become one of the best power forwards in the league next year. His potential is through the roof. He has well-developed footwork down low for a second-year player, which will play to his strength because of his lengthy arms being able to get up and over pretty much everyone.
He has a decent mid-range and three point shot as well, which hopefully he can build on this year to develop an arsenal of scoring skills. What puts him over the top is his shot-blocking capability. Again, with the length of his arms and his height, it will make it extremely hard on other PF/C to get a shot over him. With the additions of Derrick Rose, Courtney Lee, and Brandon Jennings to the Knicks backcourt, he will have plenty of people to get him the ball. With the organization's “win now” mentality, Porzingis could have a huge year in their attempts to move up in the East.
PROJECTED STATS: 12 ppg, 11 rpg, 3 bpg
4. Serge Ibaka
Serge Ibaka made a solid career for himself in Oklahoma City, but now he finally has a chance to prove himself. Without the likes of Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook on the same team as him, this could be his year to breakout of their shadow and become more than just a shot blocker. As part of the trade, OKC also acquired the young talent Victor Oladipo from the Magic. This leaves an empty void in the offensive scheme for the Magic, which is where they should feature Ibaka.
He can be dominant down low, being one of the stronger players in the NBA, but has also proven a reliable mid-range and three point shot. This, along with his well-known defensive capabilities, could push him to a new level in his career. Without a real scoring threat, I believe he will be heavily relied on at both ends of the court this season.
PROJECTED STATS: 15 ppg, 10.5 rpg, 2 bpg
3. Blake Griffin
Last year was deemed to be the year he made his jump to a full-fledged superstar. That was until, of course, injuries to his quad and hand forced him to miss 47 games. The future is bright, however, for this freakishly athletic power forward. Many people know him from his amazing highlight dunks, but one skill he possesses that many at his position do not is the ability to handle.
Over his years in the NBA, each year he has become a better ball handler, which gives him the capability of bringing the ball up the floor. Another aspect of his game he has worked on in more recent years is adding a three-point shot to his arsenal. If he can shoot a decent percentage from downtown, handle the ball like a point guard, and continue to be physically dominant down low, NO ONE will be able to stop him.
PROJECTED STATS: 21 ppg, 9 rpg, 4 apg, 2 spg
2. Draymond Green
Clearly, Kevin Durant is the big headline of the NBA’s free agency this summer, signing with the Golden State Warriors and becoming what some might call the league's most prominent “villain”. Some might say that with the addition of Durant, other players numbers will decrease. I can see that being the case for Klay Thompson, but not Draymond Green. Anyone who truly watches Green’s game understands he scores most of his points off of wide open shots, or by muscling his way to the basket down low.
Now, with having three elite scorers along side him, he will have the opportunity to focus more on assisting them, and more importantly, his defense. He is already a top 3 defender in the league, but now he no longer has to be an offensive weapon. He can focus his game on the things he does best; rebounding, blocking shots, and making steals. It may be far fetched, but he could very well be close to averaging a triple-double for the first time since the great Oscar Robertson.
PROJECTED STATS: 9 ppg, 13 rpg, 8 apg, 2.5 spg, 1.5 bpg
1. Anthony Davis
Let's face it, Anthony Davis did not have the year we expected last season. By no means did he underperform for his team, but a breakout year was expected. The reasoning for this may have been the early season struggles and his own personal minor injuries, but the Pelicans roster was plagued with injuries all season. This resulted in differing lineups on a nightly basis, therefore making it difficult for Davis to build any chemistry with his team.
This year, without Eric Gordon and Ryan Anderson as decently reliable sources of offense, Davis will have to step up his game. With the addition of a three-point shot to his game and his already proven defensive skill, he could make a case for MVP if all goes right.
PROJECTED STATS: 26 ppg, 12 rpg, 2 apg, 2 bpg