The NBA’s updated power forward tiers are finally here! Giannis Antetokounmpo, Kevin Durant and LeBron James have all ascended to the top of their respective tier. The other big names in this article will be discussed for what they bring to the table.
The “nba power rankings 2021” is a ranking of the top 20 NBA players. Giannis Antetokounmpo and Kevin Durant are the best of the best.
Back in the day, power forwards had to rebound, defend, and perform the grunt labor that didn’t always show up on the stat sheet. Power forwards were often seen as huge guys who were charged with playing hard. While there were exceptional exceptions at that position in terms of being offensively talented superstars, power forwards were generally viewed as big men who were tasked with playing hard. Due to floor-spacing, the contemporary power forward may be the most crucial position in the game.
With centers in the middle, it’s usually a good idea to have at least four shooters on the floor. Power forwards must efficiently span the floor since an attack will get stagnant if one of them is unable to shoot. These days, we’re also seeing strong forwards with unique skill sets, such as excellent playmaking, which is fascinating to watch. Until the king of the position is declared, here are all of the top power forwards in the NBA, sorted into tiers. Of course, Zion Williamson has yet to play a single game this season and will be left out, while Anthony Davis will be considered for the power forward position, which he prefers.
Average Beginners (Tier 5)
Kyle Anderson, Darius Bazley, Chuma Okeke, Jonathan Kuminga, Rui Hachimura, Robert Covington
Tier 5 power forwards are regarded as starters at the bottom of their class, despite the fact that they perform at a basic level. They’re all deserving NBA players who contribute on the floor without having a significant effect and are often overlooked on the stat sheet.
Darius Bazley, who is just 21 years old and capable of being efficient on both sides of the floor, has the potential to be a quality starter in his career. He’s a 6’8″ active big man averaging 10.0 points per game and 6.6 rebounds per game in 27.3 minutes per game. Bazley will become more effective as he receives more playing time.
Chuma Okeke is still learning how to be efficient on both sides of the court as he works his way into the league. Because he can get to his positions fast, the forward is a good shot blocker and a competent three-point shooter. In his second season, the Magic forward is averaging 8.2 points per game and 4.7 rebounds per game.
For the time being, Jonathan Kuminga is an average power forward, but his potential is limitless. Between Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, and Andrew Wiggins, the Golden State Warriors have a lot of All-Star talent, and Kuminga gets an opportunity to learn from all of them. In his debut season, he is averaging 7.9 points per game while displaying his flexibility on occasion.
The Washington Wizards aren’t a playoff club, nor are they a very good squad, but Rui Hachimura is a bright light. Over the previous two seasons, the forward has averaged at least 13 points each game, but after 17 games, he is only averaging 8.2 points per game. When he’s healthy, Hachimura should continue to climb the rankings in terms of overall talent.
Robert Covington isn’t a guy who will blow you away with his stats, but there’s no denying that he’s a player that playoff teams lust over. This season, the forward is an above-average defender who can hit the outside jumper, averaging 7.7 points and 5.5 rebounds on 34.3 percent shooting. We’ll see how much of an effect Covington can have if he begins playing big minutes with the Clippers with Kawhi Leonard and Paul George.
Kyle Anderson moves slowly, but as an all-around power forward, he is a force to be reckoned with. The 6’9″ power forward is capable of doing it all, including defending and setting up his teammates. Anderson is having a completely different season than he did last year, and Jaren Jackson Jr’s return to the lineup might be the cause.
Tier 4: Starters of Good Quality
Harrison Barnes, Kyle Kuzma, Scottie Barnes, Jae’Sean Tate, John Collins, Aaron Gordon, Kevin Love, Carmelo Anthony, P.J. Tucker, Kristaps Porzingis, Marcus Morris Sr, Jae Crowder, Lauri Markkanen, Harrison Barnes, Kyle Kuzma, Scottie Barnes, Jae’Sean Tate, John Collins, Aaron Gordon, Kevin Love, Carmelo Anthony, P.J. Tucker, Kristaps Por
Tier 4 power forwards compete at a high level every night and are regarded as above-average players in their positions. While the gap between Tier 5 and Tier 4 players isn’t as wide as it is between Tier 3 and Tier 4, it’s still evident certain individuals are more useful starters than others.
Harrison Barnes, a former Golden State Warriors power forward, is a great power forward because he can spread the floor while also being defensively versatile. Barnes, who averages 17.0 points and 6.1 rebounds per game, is definitely an above-average forward who would be more beneficial on any championship contender than the Sacramento Kings.
Kyle Kuzma is back to his greatest form, scoring 16.3 points per game, 8.7 rebounds per game, and 3.0 assists per game on 33.1 percent three-point shooting. Kuzma seems to be content in his new position in Washington, and he has been given many opportunities to shoot the ball this season after being overlooked by the Lakers last season.
Scottie Barnes of the Toronto Raptors has been the most consistent rookie this season, averaging 14.5 points and 7.5 rebounds per game. Nobody anticipated Barnes to perform so well in his rookie season in the NBA, and when everything is said and done, we may be looking at a potential All-Star.
Jae’Sean Tate, like PJ Tucker, is a player who gives it his all every night. Tate is developing into a player that might be untouchable for the Rockets in the future as a scorer, defender, and passer. Tate, who is 26 years old and in his second season, plays above-average defense while averaging 12.4 points per game.
Collins is an excellent power forward for the Atlanta Hawks, as he demonstrated last season as the team’s second-best player on the way to the Eastern Conference Finals. Collins, on the other hand, has not quite achieved the same level this year. He’s putting up respectable averages of 16.8 PPG and 7.9 RPG, which is why he’s now in Tier 4.
Denver is hoping to make a postseason run without Jamal Muray, and Aaron Gordon’s performance is helping them do so. This season, the forward is averaging 14.6 points per game and 5.7 rebounds per game, which are above-average stats for a guy who is also a solid defender. When the Nuggets lost Jerami Grant, they needed a replacement, and Gordon has stepped up.
Kevin Love is back to his old self for the Cleveland Cavaliers, scoring 14.3 points per game and 7.3 rebounds while shooting 39.3 percent from three-point range. The veteran big man makes a life off the bench, and Cleveland has reaped the benefits of his efforts. This year’s Cavaliers playoff success will rely heavily on Love.
Carmelo Anthony, who is 37 years old, is averaging 13.4 points per game off the bench for the Los Angeles Lakers this season. Anthony has been a bright light for the Lakers in a season when they haven’t had much to cheer about. Carmelo Anthony is presently sidelined with a hamstring injury, but his performance in the final months of the season will be crucial for his team.
It’s incredible how influential PJ Tucker can be while scarcely appearing on the stat sheet. When necessary, the forward can defend all five positions and throws his heart and soul into every game. Tucker is an important element of what the Miami Heat want to achieve on both sides of the court as an experienced veteran who enjoys playing defense.
The Dallas Mavericks have been shopping Kristaps Porzingis all season, and he eventually found a new home with the Washington Wizards. The former All-Star from Latvia has an opportunity to show himself as a Tier 3 player once again, but until then, he belongs in Tier 4.
Marcus Morris Sr is a divisive character among sports fans due to his demeanor and the way he gets under opponents’ skin on the court, yet he is a valuable member of the Clippers’ roster and a seasoned veteran. He is clearly a Tier 4 player, averaging 15.9 points per game and 4.8 rebounds per game as a 32-year-old veteran.
Jae Crowder is the embodiment of a seasoned pro who understands his limits and performs the heavy work for a competitive team. Crowder is just scoring 8.9 points per game and 5.3 rebounds per game this season, but he has a big influence on defense. Crowder, who is 6’6″ and has a solid frame, will be essential for the Suns to make a long playoff run this season.
To round off Tier 4, the Cleveland Cavaliers signed Lauri Markkanen, who has been a fantastic addition. When required, the big guy can shoot the ball, block shots, and rebound the ball. Markkanen is averaging 13.6 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 0.6 blocks per game while shooting 34.2 percent from three. Markkanen, an above-average power forward, will be a key contributor for Cleveland throughout the season.
Tier 3: Caliber of an All-Star
Jerami Grant, Miles Bridges, Domantas Sabonis, Jaren Jackson Jr., Pascal Siakam, Julius Randle, Tobias Harris, Miles Bridges
Tier 3 power forwards are players with All-Star potential who will be considered for All-Star teams this season. These individuals may be the greatest player on their teams at times due to their consistently good performance, but they are generally the second or third choice on championship teams.
This season, Sabonis was dealt to the Sacramento Kings in an attempt by the Indiana Pacers to rebuild their team, in exchange for Tyrese Haliburton. The big man enjoyed an All-Star-caliber season, averaging 18.7 points per game, 12.0 rebounds per game, and 5.0 assists per game on 57.7% field goal shooting. In his career, the big man has already made two All-Star Teams and will be a contender for more in the future.
Jaren Jackson Jr. is living up to his promise from his rookie season, dominating the inside as his team’s second-best player. The Grizzlies have benefited from Ja Morant’s presence, but Jackson Jr has also been a revelation. For a Grizzlies squad that might finish with a top-3 seed in the West, the big man is averaging 16.9 points, 6.1 rebounds, and 2.2 blocks per game.
Pascal Siakam, the Raptors’ franchise player at the moment, has had a good season. He’s averaging 22.0 points, 8.7 rebounds, and 5.1 assists per game while leading the Raptors to a possible playoff seeding. For Toronto, Fred VanVleet was named to the All-Star Team, but Siakam has also been impressive.
Julius Randle may not have had the season he had last year, but he still an All-Star player. The Knicks’ 2021 Most Improved Player is averaging 19.6 points, 10.2 rebounds, and 5.3 assists per game on 42.0 percent shooting this season. Despite the fact that the Knicks are struggling and Randle is the target of most of the criticism, there is no question that the former Laker deserves to be in Tier 3.
Tobias Harris has never been named to an All-Star team, but he is a little more than an above-average starter since he is a terrific scorer. Harris is putting up 18.6 points per game, 7.3 rebounds per game, and 3.6 assists per game on 48.5 percent shooting as the third option behind Joel Embiid and James Harden. If Tobias can climb over the hump and make an All-Star Team at some point, only time will tell.
This season, Miles Bridges was considered for the All-Star Team and will be a candidate for Most Improved Player. Bridges is averaging 19.9 points, 7.1 rebounds, and 3.6 assists per game while shooting 48.1 percent from the field. Bridges has been a key component of the Hornets’ season so far as the ideal running companion for All-Star LaMelo Ball. Bridges has proven enough to earn Tier 3 despite the fact that he is not yet an All-Star.
Finally, Tier 3 is completed by Jerami Grant. Grant, one of the league’s most versatile players, contributes to the Detroit Pistons’ success on both sides of the court. Title-contending clubs would love to have Grant operate as a versatile power forward for them, thus the 6’8″ power forward is frequently in trade discussions. Grant is a borderline All-Star player, averaging 18.8 points per game and 4.3 rebounds per game.
Elite Stars (Tier 2)
Draymond Green, Anthony Davis
Two of the league’s greatest power forwards are found in this category. They are unquestionably All-Star players who have also been named to NBA All-Star teams. When fit and motivated, both players in this tier are superstars, and they should be appreciated for their achievements in the league up to this point.
While putting Anthony Davis in Tier 2 based on this season alone may seem incorrect, he is without a doubt one of the most talented big players in NBA history. Remember, this is the same Anthony Davis that helped the Los Angeles Lakers win the NBA championship in 2020. Davis still averages 23.3 points per game, 9.9 rebounds per game, 2.9 assists per game, and 2.1 blocks per game while shooting 53.4 percent from the field. These are superstar figures, but Davis is being chastised because the Lakers haven’t won enough games as a result of his efforts. Davis is without a doubt an exceptional player, despite his team’s terrible record and his awful perimeter shooting (16.9% from three).
Draymond Green is one of the most divisive players in the league, as his triple-single stat numbers leave casual fans perplexed as to why he makes All-Star Teams. However, when considering Draymond’s winning intangibles and leadership, he emerges as a Golden State Warriors superstar. Of course, Green would be a non-factor on practically any other squad. He creates a great Big Three with Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson as a point-forward/center with exceptional defensive talents. Green, one of the finest defenders in the NBA, is a key reason why the Warriors are a championship contender, and his 4th All-Star selection this year is well-deserved.
Tier 1: The Finest of the Finest
Kevin Durant, Giannis Antetokounmpo
In most Tier 1 leagues, there is one superstar that stands head and shoulders above the others. However, separating Giannis Antetokounmpo and Kevin Durant in this situation would be practically hard. Giannis is playing out of his mind and persuading everyone that he is the greatest in the world while Durant is out injured. After all, his figures are absurd. He recently concluded a game with 50 points on 17-21 shooting, the fourth-lowest number of tries for 50 points in NBA history. The Greek Freak is averaging 29.4 points per game, 11.3 rebounds per game, 6.0 assists per game, and 1.4 blocks per game this season while shooting 54.7 percent from the field. Giannis is undoubtedly in Tier 1 as the top player on the Bucks and the reigning NBA champion.
Kevin Durant, on the other hand, has a unique skill as the game’s most dominating offensive player today. Durant is averaging 29.3 points per game, 7.4 rebounds per game, and 5.8 assists per game while shooting 52.0 percent from the field and 37.2 percent from three. Durant, who is a much superior shooter than Giannis, is the most feared player in the clutch. Durant was, of course, guiding the Brooklyn Nets to a top-two spot in the Eastern Conference before to his injury. Durant needs to be in Tier 1 alongside Giannis since he has played 36 games thus far.
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