The Top Five PBA Small Forwards Right Now (April 5, 2014)

The small forward spot has not been the most productive position this conference, which is quite strange given how some of the guys playing SF are among the most talented cagers in the league. The top guy on this list, in fact, is not even among the top 20 most efficient players in the league right now. That gives me the impression that, despite their skill levels, some of the PBA’s small forwards are being underutilized (or neutralized?) this conference.

Without further ado, here they are – the top five small forwards in the 2013-2014 PBA Commissioner’s Cup as of the morning of April 5, 2014 (as always, this is based on the Player Efficiency ratings as calculated by

These are the top five PBA small forwards right now in the Commish Cup.
(all images from Sports 5)

5. Joe Devance (SMC) - 7.0ppg, 3.2rpg, 2.2apg, 20.1 EFF
- At 6’7 and nearly 230 poinds, Devance is the biggest local small forward in the PBA, and he’s definitely one of the most versatile. He can post up and shoot over smaller wingmen, and he can also drive past most local forwards his size. He has been a vital piece of San Mig Super Coffee’s past two title runs, but it seems like his production has really taken a hit in the current conference. Still, SMC fans surely don’t mind having a guy this big and this good coming off the bench, right?

4. Calvin Abueva (ALA) - 7.0ppg, 6.0rpg, 1.0apg, 20.5 EFF
- The Beast has been very inconsistent this season, and that trend remains true in the current conference. He started like a house on fire, dropping a 16-point, 14-board effort against the Texters in Alaska’s first game, but he has since struggled, scoring in double-figures just once in the Aces’ last six outings. If coach Luigi Trillo is still dreaming of a Commish Cup repeat, then has to find a way for his star sophomore to be more consistently productive.

Calvin Abueva needs to live up to his moniker if
the Aces are to successfully defend their crown.
(image by Paul Ryan Tan/Sports 5)

3. Jared Dillinger (MER) - 9.6ppg, 3.2rpg, 2.6apg, 22.5 EFF
- After starting slow against the Beermen and the Texters, this Gilas Pilipinas stalwart seems to have found his rhythm. He is averaging about 15 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists, while shooting nearly 49% from the field in his last three assignments. That’s definitely a good sign for the Bolts, who still have two games to go before the next round begins. Needless to say, Meralco will need Dillinger to continue putting up those numbers for them to advance.

2. Gabe Norwood (ROS) - 8.3ppg, 4.2rpg, 3.3apg, 1.0spg, 24.1 EFF
- Gabe’s game has never really been predicated on his numbers, but he has been among the league’s most balanced contributors this conference. I mean, just look at his line – he does pretty much everything for the Painters, who are still in the thick of things for a quarterfinals slot. The George Mason alum has had a solid stretch in ROS’s last four games, with the Painters winning 2. With new import Wayne Chism having to adjust a bit more to the PBA game, the onus will be on Norwood to be the catalyst on both ends of the floor.

Gabe Norwood's versatility continues to be a boon to
the chances of the Elasto-Painters.
(image by Paolo Papa/Sports 5)

1. Chris Ellis (GIN) - 9.6ppg, 4.3rpg, 1.0 triple per game, .500 3pt%, .543 FG%, 25.3 EFF
- If the season could be compressed to just the current conference, then Ellis might just be the leading candidate for Most Improved Player. The erstwhile one-trick swingman has added a more reliable outside shot and better rebounding to his repertoire, and though the advancement in his game hasn’t really resulted in more wins for the Kings this conference, it’s still a great thing to watch this young gun on the brink of true stardom.

Outside looking in:
JC Intal (BAR) - 20.1 EFF
Mark Borboran (AIR) - 19.8 EFF
KG Cañaleta (TNT) - 18.5 EFF

Chris Ellis soars high both in-game and in our rankings.
(image by Pranz Kaeno Billones/Sports 5)

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1 Comment

I've asked this a few times already, and I always get the same answers.

But is there still any chance of Ellis included in the national team post FIBA world and Asiad?

Right now he is the best player in that position.
Are the rules governing player's passport as evidence of his nationality really that rigid?