The NBA: March 2014 Position Battle – The Top 5 Power Forwards Right Now


In this Position Battle post, we will focus on the top five power forwards at this point in the season. We will take into account just the players’ stats for the latest five games of their respective teams. This will, hopefully, give us a more current picture of each player’s production.

Despite how good he’s been playing and how the Clippers have won 11 in a row, Blake Griffin, statistically, is not the best power forward out there right now. The title of top dawg goes, instead, to a younger fella whose team might be floundering, but whose numbers are soaring through the roof. #Unibrow.

And, no, LaMarcus Aldridge doesn’t make this list. Not by a long shot.

Note: All of the following stats are based on each player’s stats as computed by HoopsStats.com. They were taken on March 17, 2014 (Manila time).

The best 4s in the game right now.
(composite image by Enzo Flojo/Hoop Nut)

5. Serge Ibaka (OKC) - 17.0ppg, 11.0rpg, 1.0spg, 3.6bpg, .507 FG%, 25.2 EFF
Let’s just forget for a minute how inconsistent the OKC Thunder have been since Russell Westbrook’s return. Let us, instead, focus on how Ibaka has been awesome. He has registered double-doubles in three of OKC’s last four games, and, get this, blocked SEVEN shots against the hapless Los Angeles Lakers a few nights ago. It’s still too early to say if Ibaka can finally be the third piece of the Thunder’s own version of the Big Three, but if he continues on like this, then he might just help KD and Jet Zero return to the Finals.
           

4. Carmelo Anthony (NYK) - 26.8ppg, 7.2rpg, 4.0apg, 1.4spg, 1.0bpg, 2.4 triples per game, .929 FT%, 26.0 EFF
Yes, we are penciling Melo in as a power forward. He’s actually been playing mostly as a 4 for the underachieving Knicks alongside either Amar’e or Chandler as small-ball centers. Crazy? Hell, yeah, but these are the Knicks, so crazy is par for the course. Melo, naturally, creates so many mismatches. He’s hit at least three triples in five of the last NYK games, with New York going 6-1 in that stretch (Mike Woodson’s crew is the hottest East team right now, believe it or not). He’s shot 50% or better from the floor in 4 of those games, too, which are all fruits of Anthony usually being guarded by slower opposing bigs who get caught on those perimeter switches. Can Melo keep this up? Sure, but the bigger question is will the Knicks win enough games to get to the postseason?

Melo as a small-ball 4? Hell yeah.
(image by Brian Babineau/Getty Images)

3. Blake Griffin (LAC) - 27.0ppg, 9.0rpg, 4.8apg, 1.4spg, .551 FG%, 27.8 EFF
In Episode 1 of the Hoop Nut Blogcast, Rolly says that Blake Griffin is MVP material. I don’t think I would go that far, but the numbers don’t lie – he has been playing maybe the best basketball of his life and the Clippers have won their last eleven games. That makes this LA team the hottest team on the planet. They have surge to become the fourth-best team in the league and just a game behind the Thunder in the West. And did you see Blake Griff dropping 30 and 15 on GSW, or his 14/16 FG shooting masterpiece against Phoenix? MVP? Maybe not, but he has a legit shot at maybe All-NBA First Team.


2. Kevin Love (MIN) - 25.0ppg, 10.2rpg, 6.0apg, 3.0 triples per game, .429 3pt%, 30.2 EFF
Love might be First Team material, too, if the Wolves were in the East (they would be seventh seeds, for the record), but they aren’t so the bitter reality is Love will probably not be in the First Team by season’s end (he might even leave Minneapolis altogether, but that's another story). I love how he keeps on battling and working, though, despite the probability of the T-Wolves missing the postseason bus yet again. His tandem with Ricky Rubio has really worked wonders in terms of highlight reels, and, consequently, this is has become one of the most exciting teams to watch. And did I mention his hitting three treys per outing? #Insane.


1. Anthony Davis (NOP) - 33.2ppg, 14.2rpg, 2.8apg, 1.0spg, 3.4bpg, .571 FG%, .902 FT%, 43.0 EFF
Mr. Unibrow isn’t just the best power forward right now. Heck, with these numbers, he’s actually the best player on the face of the Earth.  I mean, he has scored at least 28 points in each of his last six games, and he has been a demon in the paint, grabbing rebounds, getting steals, and blocking shots with impunity. By far the most impressive stat, however, has been his free throw shooting. In his last three games, Davis has made all TWENTY-NINE of his charities. For anybody, even at this level, that’s truly impressive, but for a big man? That’s nothing short of amazing. I just hope Andre Drummond and Dwight Howard have been taking notes.

Super sophomore Anthony Davis has been nothing
short of dominant in his last five outings.
(image by Jonathan Bachman/AP)


Outside looking in:
Kenneth Faried (DEN) - 24.8 EFF
Greg Monroe (DET) - 24.2 EFF
Paul Millsap (ATL) - 21.2 EFF



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