NBA PF Rankings part 2

Over the last few weeks, we’ve been running a series ranking the best starters in the NBA at each position. You can check out our other positional rankings (PG’s part 1 | PG’s part 2 | SG’s part 1 | SG’s part 2 | SF’s part 1 | SF part 2). Today, we continue these rankings with our look at the best power forwards in the league.

Tier 2
15 – David WestLast season’s stats: 12.8 ppg, 6.6 rpg, 2.1 apg, 17.8 PER
West is as steady as they come. In his 10th NBA season, he’s essentially been the exact same player with the exact same production every season other than his injury-shortened second year. Predicted season stats: 15.0 ppg, 7.5 rpg, 2.5 apg, 18.0 PER

14 – Paul MillsapLast season’s stats: 16.6 ppg, 8.8 rpg, 2.3 apg, 21.8 PER
I’d be curious what the take on Millsap would be if he wasn’t on the Jazz. Playing alongside the talented Al Jefferson, Derrick Favors, and Enes Kanter, it seems as though Millsap is sometimes the forgotten man. Like David West, he’s been incredibly consistent since the start of his career, though. Predicted season stats: 17.5 ppg, 9.0 rpg, 2.3 apg, 22.0 PER

13 – Anthony DavisLast season’s stats: Rookie
Much has been made about Anthony Davis’s upside. However, whenever anyone talks about his upside, it’s 90% length, athleticism, and defense. I think his offensive game is sneaky good, though. He doesn’t have any go to post moves yet and he’s definitely not your traditional back to the basket post, but his ability to run the floor and finish near the rim makes him extremely valuable. Predicted season stats: 15.5 ppg, 8.0 rpg, 1.5 apg, 21.0 PER

12 – Dirk NotwitzkiLast season’s stats: 21.6 ppg, 6.8 rpg, 2.2 apg, 21.7 PER
Dirk hasn’t yet played a game this year and I’m not sure when he will. At this point, he’s a non-rebounding, non-defending jump shooter. But my goodness does this guy shoot the ball well. Plus, given his size and skill set, I’m guessing he could play at a relatively high level for another five years. His fade away elbow jumper is unblockable. He’s a little low on this list because I think he isn’t going to play a ton of games this season and his Dallas squad is looking a little thin even if you inserted him into the lineup. Predicted season stats: 19.0 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 2.0 apg, 20.0 PER

11 – Tim DuncanLast season’s stats: 15.4 ppg, 9.0 rpg, 2.0 apg, 22.5 PER
Of the guys near the top of the least, Duncan surely will have the least gaudy statistics. Once the playoffs start, though, Tim will (likely) again step it up again. I don’t know how many seasons he’s got left in his increasingly old bones, but he looks far from done. Predicted season stats: 14.0 ppg, 8.5 rpg, 2.0 apg, 21.0 PER

10 – Serge IbakaLast season’s stats: 9.1 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 0.4 apg, 19.4 PER
Slowly but surely, Ibaka’s developing an offensive game. I watch a lot of OKC games on television and I find myself surprisingly feeling confident when he puts up a fifteen foot jumper. Defensively, he’s a game changer. Predicted season stats: 12.5 ppg, 8.5 rpg, 0.7 apg, 22.0 PER

9 – Josh SmithLast season’s stats: 18.8 ppg, 9.6 rpg, 3.5 apg, 21.1 PER
I don’t think Mr. Smith finishes the season in Atlanta. Smith is the power forward equivalent of Russell Westbrook. He’s going to take some stupid chances on defense and he’s going to jack a few dumb shots, but he’s also got the ability to change the game driving to the basket, getting steals, and getting blocks. Predicted season stats: 16.5 ppg, 9.0 rpg, 3.0 apg, 20.0 PER

Tier 1
8 – LaMarcus AldridgeLast season’s stats: 21.7 ppg, 8.0 rpg, 2.4 apg, 22.7 PER
He’s started off the season relatively cool compared to his last few seasons, but I have confidence that he’ll pick his game back up. The starting five for Portland of Lillard, Matthews, Batum, and Hickson has been scary good this year. It’s too bad their bench – which has been good for a whopping 14 points per game – is historically bad. Predicted season stats: 21.0 ppg, 8.0 rpg, 2.5 apg, 21.5 PER

7 – Kenneth FariedLast season’s stats: 10.2 ppg, 7.7 rpg, 0.8 apg, 21.9 PER
I think Faried is going to develop into a power forward version of Gerald Wallace. The man – correction, Manimal – is just a beast. His limited size means he doesn’t exactly protect the rim, but his rebounding is simply phenomenal. Plus, he’s probably one of my five favorite guys in the entire league to watch. Predicted season stats: 12.5 ppg, 11.5 rpg, 1.0 apg, 23.0 PER

6 – Blake GriffinLast season’s stats: 20.7 ppg, 10.9 rpg, 3.2 apg, 23.4 PER
I’ve watch Blake Griffin play a ton of times over the past few years. He’s a nice player, but he’s way over-hyped. He’s got a tremendous amount of athleticism and I love his highlight dunks as much as the next guy (Just as an FYI, I was the former founder of the Minnesota branch of the Shawn Kemp fan club). However, if you take away the highlight dunks, you start to see a power forward that looks a little Brand/Boozer/Stoudamire-ish in his game. AKA – when he loses his athleticism, I don’t know how great of a player we are looking at. Predicted season stats: 20.0 ppg, 10.0 rpg, 3.0 apg, 22.0 PER

5 – Chris BoshLast season’s stats: 18.0 ppg, 7.9 rpg, 1.8 apg, 18.9 PER
I think Bosh gets a bad rap for the whole Miami situation. When you hear people talk about him, it’s often phrased in such a way that makes him sound like a tag-a-long kid brother. People forget he’s a 7-time all-star and a guy with talent to be in the top 10 in the league in both scoring and rebounding (both important things, last time I checked) when need be. Predicted season stats: 19.5 ppg, 8.5 rpg, 2.2 apg, 22.0 PER

4 – Carmelo AnthonyLast season’s stats: 22.6 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 3.6 apg, 21.1 PER
It’s a good thing Melo won a championship his freshman year in college, because 10-years later, it’s still being brought up to defend his ability as a competitor constantly. He’s off to an incredible start for the Linsanity/Amare-less Knicks. Which is all well and good, but nobody is ever going to care until he wins a second (or heaven forbid, third) round playoff series. Predicted season stats: 24.0 ppg, 7.0 rpg, 4.0 apg, 23.0 PER

3 – Pau GasolLast season’s stats: 17.4 ppg, 10.4 rpg, 3.7 apg, 20.5 PER
I have no idea why Minnesota keeps getting linked with Pau. It makes a whole lot of sense for LA to look to move him, but I don’t know why a team made up of guys largely in their early to mid-20s would look to add a guy who’s on an enormous contract and is clearly tailing off. Gasol should fit in nicely with the personnel of this year’s Laker squad, but I’m not sure he’s the perfect big for a Mike D’Antoni office. Predicted season stats: 15.5 ppg, 9.0 rpg, 3.5 apg, 19.5 PER

2 – Zach RandolphLast season’s stats: 11.6 ppg, 8.0 rpg, 1.7 apg, 17.9 PER
Last year was an aberration for Z-Bo. When healthy, he teams with now-superior of the two Gasol brothers – Marc – to form the scariest front line in all the land. With the trade of James Harden and constant turmoil that is the Lakers, there is a chance this could be Memphis’s year to come out of the West. I’m not sure a team with guards as average as Tony Allen and Mike Conley can beat the big dogs in the West, but this certainly seems like a year when an outlier like Memphis could do it. Predicted season stats: 17.0 ppg, 11.0 rpg, 2.5 apg, 24.0 PER

1 – Kevin LoveLast season’s stats: 26.0 ppg, 13.3 rpg, 2.0 apg, 25.4 PER
Just because he’s number one on this list, I’m not anointing Kevin Love as a complete player. In fact, he still needs to work on his defense and his below the rim game is going to limit some of what he will ever be able to do. That being said, this guy is simply amazing. His rare combination of rebounding, 3-pt shooting along with his ability to get to the foul line make him easily the best offensive four in the game. He’s approaching the my once untouchable throne of favorite Timberwolf of all-time (obviously occupied by Anthony Peeler Kevin Garnett). Predicted season stats: 26.0 ppg, 13.5 rpg, 2.5 apg, 25.5 PER