Thursday, October 4, 2007

Rank Me Please! 25 Small Forwards

Disclaimer: I know that Seattle says that Kevin Durant is going to be playing SG this season. And I should probably just go back and alter my SG rankings to reflect that. However, I don't believe he'll play SG for the majority of the year, so I'm putting him at there!

Small Forwards

  1. LeBron James - Like it was even a contest.
  2. Carmelo Anthony - He'll continue to score at will, but will he develop the rest of his game?
  3. Luol Deng - He took a massive leap forward last season and I think he'll take a substantial step forward yet again this year.
  4. Josh Howard - He's #2 to Dirk on the Mavs and he'll see his role increase even more this year.
  5. Paul Pierce - Sacrilege you say?!? Somebody has to see their stats drop in Boston and Pierce is my pick for the honors.
  6. Rashard Lewis - In Orlando he's paired with one of the top big men in the league, which should be a very complementary relationship for his perimeter-oriented offensive skillset.
  7. Caron Butler - After having a career year sidetracked by injury, I expect Caron to perform at an even higher level this season.
  8. Andrei Kirilenko - Whether or not he's moved, he'll have a resurgence that will produce stats similar to his All-Star season two years ago.
  9. Richard Jefferson - He needs to step up his game as the talent around him continues to age and wear down.
  10. Tayshaun Prince - A versatile player on both ends of the court, Prince could see a more active role on offense this year.
  11. Josh Smith - Listed next to the word "superfreak" in the dictionary. This year, he'll either make "The Leap" or will be left out in the cold when it comes time to talk contract extension with Atlanta.
  12. Corey Maggette - Along with Cuttino Mobley, he'll have to take on a greater burden this season as the Clip Joint struggles to avoid the cellar while missing Elton Brand.
  13. Rudy Gay - Scream "Homer pick" all you want to -- he'll thrive in Iavaroni's uptempo system with some real point guards delivering the ball to him.
  14. Kevin Durant - He's going to struggle early on and he'll hit the rookie wall sooner than most expect while he is thrust into a leadership role immediately.
  15. Shane Battier - His stats will look the same as they always do, but Houston will win more games than they have in recent memory due to his ability to hold things together in crunch time.
  16. Ron Artest - Honestly, I expect him to have a down year, probably get traded and then promptly lose what little remaining grasp he has on sanity.
  17. Danny Granger - He was going to take on more responsibility this season after his strong showing last year anyways, but with Jermaine O'Neal 's chances of getting traded stronger than ever, he might be the leading scorer for the Pacers.
  18. Stephen Jackson - He'll perform well in Nellie's system again this season. Now if we can just keep him out of trouble away from the court.
  19. Peja Stojakovic - Supposedly he's healthy, which makes the Hornets an early favorite to joing the playoff hunt this season.
  20. Grant Hill - If he can get playing time in Phoenix, he'll be a positive contributor. His desire for a ring will coax him to push himself hard all season.
  21. Luke Walton - One of the few guys that Kobe seems to like playing with in L.A., Son of Bill will need to elevate his game to keep the Black Mamba from killing the rest of his teammates.
  22. Hedo Turkoglu - Will probably see his minutes decrease with the arrival of Rashard Lewis, which makes him a good candidate to be traded early in the season.
  23. Kyle Korver - Wonder if he'd shoot better if he got his hair cut so it wasn't constantly in his eyes?
  24. Bruce Bowen - I expect a precipitous dropoff in his regular season production, due to his age and the arrival of Ime Udoka.
  25. Ruben Patterson - Simply because I read today that he's tired of people calling him "Kobe Stopper".

Guys who could enter the Top 25: Corey Brewer, Ryan Gomes, Tarence Kinsey, Ime Udoka, Matt Barnes, Matt Carroll, Jeff Green.

No comments: