best defensive power forwards of all time
best defensive power forwards of all time
He averaged just under 18 points and 7.5 rebounds for his career and made seven All-Star selections, six All-Defensive Teams, and three championships with Boston. In those loaded championship teams that focused on winning with teamwork, Heinsohn was considered the go-to offensive option. The No. Petit also holds the third-best rebounding per-game average (16.2 RPG) and trails only Hall of Famers Bill Russell and Wilt Chamberlain. As part of the series, this list looks at the best defensive power forwards in NBA history. By year three, he was already a 20-point, 10-rebound per night player, and would achieve that feat six more times in his career. In case you missed it, Jason Kidd was the best defensive point guard, Michael Jordan was the best defensive shooting guard and John Havlicek led the way for small forwards. We will be taking into account personal accolades, team success, and individual stats and there impact throughout the player’s career. He was an excellent scorer and rebounder throughout his career, highlighted by his 16.1 points and 11 rebounds per game averages. Even though he was never considered the best player in those Boston championship teams playing alongside the likes of Russell, Bob Cousy, and Bill Sharman, Heinsohn nevertheless played a crucial role. In one of the most impressive NBA Finals performances in history, Dirk led the underdog-Mavericks to a tile against LeBron James and the Miami Heat while taking home Finals MVP honors. Nowitzki used that to propel the Dallas Mavericks to an improbable championship run in 2011, upsetting LeBron James’ Miami Heat. As a full-time starter, McHale averaged 22.7 points, 8.6 rebounds, 2.4 assist, and 1.8 blocks. If we’re talking about winning, then Tom Heinsohn has to be in the conversation. But what truly sets Nowitzki apart from the others in this list is his ability to lead his team to win at the highest level. But for his lack of consistent success, he falls to number 8 on this list. For that reason, he is the best Power Forward never to win the MVP. Oakley’s 63.3 DWS is 23rd in NBA history. Jamison was a multiple-time All-Star with the Washington Wizards early on in his career. Playing as a center in college, the 200-pound Pettit lacked the strength to play the five spot in the NBA. In his nine years playing for the Boston Celtics, Heinsohn won the championship eight times. McHale was one of the craftiest low-post players in NBA history. He helped the New Jersey nets compete for a championship and made the All-Star game during the 2003-04 season. In his third year in the 2000-2001 season, Nowitzki jacked up his averages to 21.8 points, 9.2 rebounds, and 2.1 assists and was selected into the All-NBA Third team for the first time. DeBusschere also made six All-Defensive Teams and won two NBA Championships in his 13 seasons in the league. When you take into account all of this, it is easy to see why the great Tim Duncan is the greatest power forward of all time. As a 7-footer, Nowitzki relied on his offense and not his defense. Not only did Rodman win five titles with the Chicago Bulls, but he made eight All-Defensive Teams and won Defensive Player of the Year twice. Despite most of his success coming early on in his career, Brand was a steady role player off the bench and could be counted on for his rebounding and interior presence. Dirk played his entire career with the Dallas Mavericks and was a pillar of loyalty and commitment to an NBA franchise. In the 1976 season, Lucas averaged 20.2 points and 11.4 rebounds and helped Portland win a title that year. With the Utah Jazz, Boozer made two All-Star games and one All-NBA Team. In hindsight, despite his less-than-ideal off-court presence, Hayes is considered one of the greatest Power Forwards of all-time. Barkley made the All-Star Team 11 times and also made the All-NBA Team 11 times as well. Partner of iOne Digital / Cassius Network. He was the first to surpass the 15,000-point mark, was the league leader in games played with 996 — and a league-record of 706 consecutive games played, and was the free throw king with 6,712 free-throw made. McHale possesses a great resume being a member of the Celtics in the 1980s. So let’s dive in. He’s 18th all time in steals and blocks (1859 and 2037, respectively). Of course, we cannot bring up Tim Duncan without talking about the myriad of accolades. Winners and Losers of the Chris Paul Trade. That season saw Rodman complete his shift from Small Forward to Power Forward as he formed a strong defensive frontline with MVP David Robinson. Note: All players featured in this list played majority of their minutes at the power forward position per Basketball Reference. His savvy play resulted in two All-Defensive Team selections – one 1st team and 2nd team – and he had seven seasons in the top-20 in defensive win shares. Before his time with the San Antonio Spurs, Aldridge was amongst the best in the NBA during his tenure with the Portland Trailblazers. One of the best high-flyers that the game has ever seen, Larry Nance made 3 All-Star appearances and All-Defensive Teams in his 14 NBA seasons. Among the last traditional big men in the NBA, Jefferson retired after the 2017 season as one of the best big men in basketball from the mid-2000s to late 2010s. All I had to do was make a few jump shots and I was on my way to a good night.”. In his 2011 championship run against the Miami superteam, Nowitzki never crumbled, consistently willing his team to win. In the 1990-1991 season, his first full season as a starter, Rodman upped his averages to the tune of 8.2 points and 12.5 rebounds as he took home his second NBA Defensive Player of the Year nod. The NBA veteran also has career averages of 19.5 points and 8.3 rebounds. One of the premier enforcers in the NBA during the 1980s and 1990s, Oakley was as tough as they come: he played 1282 games and started 1159. And now, here are the top-five best defensive power forwards in NBA history. Kevin Love came closest in the modern era with 53 consecutive games in the 2010-2011 season. His imposing nature on the court helped him get selected to one All-Star team during the 1993-94 season. His demise was a combination of injury woes, bad matchups, and a certain Airness. A truly efficient player, Tomjanovich shot better than 50 percent from the field in his career while averaging just a shade under 17.5 points per game. What is funny is that he now seems to be underrated and somewhat forgotten in some ways as a player, partly due to his colorful TV personality. Over 19 NBA seasons, Otis Thorpe displayed a high level of consistency in both the scoring and rebounding departments. Standing at 6-foot-8, Oakley was never a shot-blocker, instead racking up more than a steal per game. Standing at 6-foot-8, Oakley was never a shot-blocker, instead racking up more than a steal per game. The 2010-2011 season was the highlight of Nowitzki’s career. In an interview with the Saturday Evening Post, Cousy shared, “Sure, he takes bad shots now and then. At the height of his career, Petit was the best power forward in the NBA and averaged a double-double throughout his entire career. Throughout his 16-year career, Hayes’ presence was felt all over the court: he averaged 21 points, 12.5 rebounds 1.8 assists, one steal and two blocks for his career. Hayes had eight seasons in the top-20 in blocks and had 13 seasons in the top-20 in DWS. From 1991-1995, Willis grabbed more than 10 rebounds per game, including a career-high 18 rebounds per game in 1994.
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