The NBA: Position Battle: The Best Power Forwards Right Now

Just like the best centers, right now the best 4s in the league aren’t the biggest names you’ll find. Arguably the best PF in history, Tim Duncan, isn’t even in the Top 5, despite the fact he’s been having another great season. The best power forward of the past five games has actually been someone who was almost forgotten last season.

5) David West (IND) - 17.6ppg, 9.4rpg, 3.0apg, 1.4spg, 23.2 EFF
West is still quite far from his All-Star form a couple of seasons ago, but that’s not to say he’s been below-par this year. The rise in his production can be attributed to two things – the absence of Danny Granger and the regression of Roy Hibbert.  

4) Josh Smith (ATL) - 22.0ppg, 9.4rpg, 3.8apg, 1.6spg, 1.2bpg, 23.6 EFF
After a slow start this season, Smith seems to have finally settled into his usual all-around awesomeness. He’s the only guy in this group stuffing it in all five major stat categories, and the Hawks are clearly benefitting – they went 4-1 in their last five assignments.

3) LaMarcus Aldridge (POR) - 22.2ppg, 10.8rpg, 1.2spg, 1.6bpg, 26.2 EFF
The Blazers are 2-3 in their last five games, but it’s certainly not because Aldridge hasn’t been playing well. He’s actually been quite impressive, amassing double-doubles left and right and outplaying virtually every PF opponent (with the exception of David West) in the past week.

2) Blake Griffin (LAC) - 21.2ppg, 10.0rpg, 3.2apg, 2.2spg, 29.0 EFF
The Clips are riding high on a 6-game winning streak, and Griffin’s awesome stats have been a big factor. He outplayed Andrea Bargnani, Paul Millsap, and Kevin Love in that winning run, and he should be on his way to another All-Star appearance early next year.

1) David Lee (GSW) - 24.2ppg, 12.6rpg, 2.4apg, 29.4 EFF
The last time Lee averaged a double-double, he was still playing for the Knicks. When he moved out West to California, his production dipped a little bit, and he was all but relegated to the dust bin of memory. Right now, however, he’s back on-track, norming stratospheric numbers as the Warriors stay just half a game behind the Clippers and six games ahead of the ballyhooed Lakers in the Pacific Division. If the Warriors manage to enter the Playoffs this season, Lee’s play will be the biggest reason why.

David Lee has been steamrolling the competition
for the resurgent Warriors.
(image by Chuck Burton/AP)

Honorable Mention: Zach Randolph (MEM), Tim Duncan (SAS), Glen Davis (ORL)

Game Recaps (courtesy of the Sports Network):
Golden State 104, Charlotte 96
Stephen Curry and David Lee combined for 52 points to lead the Golden State Warriors to a 104-96 wire-to-wire win over the Charlotte Bobcats on Monday. Curry finished with 27 points to go along with seven assists and Lee had 25 points on 10-for-14 shooting and 11 boards. Carl Landry had 16 points and Jarrett Jack scored 12 for the Warriors, winners in four straight. Kemba Walker dropped in 24 points to go with six assists and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist had 17 points and seven rebounds for the Bobcats, who have dropped eight straight.

Philadelphia 104, Detroit 97
Jrue Holiday scored 12 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter and doled out eight assists, as the Philadelphia 76ers pulled out a hard-fought 104-97 victory over the Detroit Pistons at Wells Fargo Center. Even Turner filled the stat sheet with 18 points, 11 rebounds and seven assists, while Thaddeus Young added 20 points for Philadelphia, which had split a home-and-home series with the Boston Celtics over the weekend. Greg Monroe and Brandon Knight led Detroit with 22 points each, and Rodney Stuckey finished with 19 off the bench in the setback. Detroit was coming off a win against the Cavaliers and had won in Philadelphia handily in mid-November to end an 0-8 start to the season.

Miami 101, Atlanta 92
LeBron James filled the stat sheet with 27 points, seven rebounds and six assists as the Miami Heat used a strong second half to down the Atlanta Hawks, 101-92, at American Airlines Arena. Dwyane Wade followed with 26 points, while Chris Bosh recorded 14 points and 10 rebounds for the Heat, who won their second straight. Josh Smith paced the Hawks with 22 points and Al Horford added his sixth straight double-double with 20 points and 11 boards as Atlanta had its three-game win streak snapped.

San Antonio 134, Houston 126 (OT)
Tony Parker recorded the first triple-double of his career with 27 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists, as the San Antonio Spurs needed overtime to beat the Houston Rockets, 134-126. Gary Neal made seven 3-pointers en route to 29 points for the Spurs, who have won five in a row. Manu Ginobili tallied 22 points and six assists. Tim Duncan had a double-double with 10 points and 13 boards for San Antonio, which improved to 11-2 on the road this season. Jeremy Lin tied a career high with 38 points while dishing out seven assists for the Rockets, who have dropped three straight. Chandler Parsons finished with 20 points and seven boards for Houston, which played without guard James Harden due to a right ankle injury.

Dallas 119, Sacramento 96
O.J. Mayo led six Mavericks in double figures with 19 points, as Dallas rolled to a 17th straight home win against the Sacramento Kings in a lopsided 119-96 decision at American Airlines Center. Chris Kaman chipped in 18 points, Darren Collison scored 15 and Dahntay Jones, Derek Fisher and Jae Crowder each added 11 in the club's third straight win. The Kings, who have not won in Dallas since Feb. 27, 2003, gave up 32 points off 20 turnovers and allowed the hosts to shoot 55 percent from the field. Francisco Garcia made seven 3-pointers to join DeMarcus Cousins with a team- high 25 points. Jason Thompson added 11 points and 12 rebounds in the setback.

Portland 92, Toronto 74
LaMarcus Aldridge recorded a double-double with 30 points and 12 rebounds, as the Portland Trail Blazers handled the Toronto Raptors, 92-74. J.J. Hickson added 16 points and 11 boards for the Blazers, who have won eight straight against Toronto. Nolan Smith and Sasha Pavlovic had 11 and 10 points, respectively. DeMar DeRozan ended with 20 points for the Raptors, who went winless on a five-game road trip to fall to 1-14 away from home this season. Toronto center Andrea Bargnani hurt his right elbow in the first quarter. X- rays came back negative. The Raptors also lost guard Kyle Lowry to a right triceps injury.

LaMarcus Aldridge is putting up All-Star numbers for
the Portland Trail Blazers.
(image by Don Ryan/AP)

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