Top 10 Small Forwards In The NBA Today
Small forward is considered a lost art in basketball by some, but these 10 players are still able to make headlines playing the three. Read on to see who made our list of the top 10 small forwards currently playing in the NBA.
1. LeBron James
Currently on contract with the Cleveland Cavaliers, you’d have to have been living under a rock for the last 10 years to not have heard of LeBron. He’s currently shooting 47% when it comes to FG’s and 42% for 3-pointers with a hefty 79% for free-throws. With only 10 games into the ‘14-‘15 season he’s already racked up 259 points for an average of almost 26 points a game. His career-high season was in ‘05-’06 with 2478 points in 79 games for an average of 31 points a game.
2. Kevin Durant
Another top name in the game, Durant currently plays for the Oklahoma City Thunder. Out with an injury to the right foot, he’s expected to return to the game after 6-8 weeks. However, his stats speak for themselves and earn him a solid second place in our top 10 ranking. Last season he was shooting 50% for FG’s and 39% for threes. Despite the low numbers outside the arch his free throws were impressive at 88%. Overall he scored 2593 points in 81 games for an average of 32 points a game, his career high.
3. Carmelo Anthony
Coming in at number three is the Knicks’ Carmelo Anthony. Off to a solid start this season he’s shooting 47% for FG’s and 43% for threes. His free throws leave a little to be desired at 75%, but he’s on track for another season of impressive numbers on total rebounds as well. Free throws are solid on his part as well at 76% and he’s averaging 24 points a game. The ’05-’06 season was his career-high with 2122 points in 80 games for an average of 26 points a game.
4. Kawhi Leonard
Playing for the Pacers, Leonard is a well-known small forward in the NBA despite his short tenure. Despite his appalling 3-point FG percentage (22%), his 2-point and free throw stats are solid this season at 51% and 81% respectively. With only 10 games into the ’14-’15 season his defensive rebounds are also impressive with 62 on the card already. He’s averaging 12.6 points a game, but he’s got plenty of room to grow as one of this list’s youngest bucks.
5. Paul George
Another Pacers man makes the cut with Paul George coming in at number five on our list. George is also performing well in his relatively short career. He is currently taking up the duty of unofficial PR intern for the Pacers during recovery from a severe lower leg injury suffered during the Team USA match in Las Vegas earlier this year. Having completed his fourth NBA season last year, George has some impressive stats that include 42% for field goals, 36% from the three, and an 86% free throw success rate. Last season was his career-high season with 1737 points in 80 games for an average of 21.7 points a game.
6. Gordon Hayward
Jazz man Hayward is currently in his 5th season and cleaning up on the court with 88.5% from the free throw line, a 47% average for FG’s and 32.8% at the three. His presence on the court in the late minutes of the game have proven him a key player with the ability to lead and bring his team back from a deficit. He has the capacity to score, secure the rebound and draw the foul, securing clutch opportunities despite a level of consistency that leaves something to be desired.
7. Rudy Gay
While currently on the injured list with right achilles tendinitis, Rudy Gay is in his 8th season with the NBA and currently plays for the Sacramento Kings. Firing off 44% for FG’s and 32% for threes this season, Gay has been a dependable source for points. The Kings have been experimenting with a faster play style and pushing Gay to power forward recently, but his roots still remain in the small forward position where he shines undeniably.
8. Nicholas Batum
A six-year veteran of the Portland Trailblazers, Batum is a Frenchman who has proven himself as a considerable opponent in American Basketball. While his averages this season are not all that impressive, he possesses the capacity for great bursts of energy that simply set the court alight. On other occasions he can be flat and uninteresting. It’s almost as if he refuses to tap into his potential until he senses he’s on the brink of ire from the fans and management. It’s at that point he can simply turn the switch and complete clutch plays, seemingly at will.
9. Tobias Harris
Currently on the Orlando Magic roster, Harris is performing well out fo the starting gate this season with his shooting at 48%, 43%, and 80% for FG’s, threes, and free throws respectively. His rebounds are also showing impressive numbers with 80 defensive rebounds so far in just 12 games. With 246 points so far this season he’s averaging 19 points a game, but if he continues to remain on point he’ll bulk those numbers up with little effort. He’s proven to be a consistent and dependable player and his numbers have only become more solid since his start in 2011.
10. Chandler Parsons
Another relatively inexperienced, but impressive small forward to make the list is Chandler Parsons. With only three seasons under his belt this Florida native has done great things under Texan tutelage. Newly absorbed by the Rockets, Parsons will not doubt build on his already notable record. This 26-year-old has shown steady improvement after being drafted in 2011 and for Texas his presence in the league is paying off.