Top 10 Centers Three Years From Now

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 7:14 pm
So let's assume there's no such thing as the NBA draft (therefore, no prospects or collegiate players allowed). Who do you see as the premiere 10 centers down the road in 3 years? List and debate, including a brief description and possibly a predicted statline. Naturally, I'll begin with my list:

1. Andrew Bynum - a declining Kobe, LA's star whistles, and a rapidly expanding offensive arsenal are all reasons to believe that Bynum (the junior to Howard) will overtake Dwight in as little as 3 years. While not the defender Howard is, Bynum's PPG production will increase as Kobe's cools off.
22.3 PPG, 13.2 RPG, 1.7 APG, 1.1 SPG, 2.6 BPG

2. Dwight Howard - Garnett and Bosh have proven that big men take the cut when superstars collaborate. Howard is less than a year from landing on an established team with a fellow superstar. When he's playing second fiddle and getting less whistles his way, his value will decrease (albeit, slightly).
17.8 PPG, 13.6 RPG, 1.9 APG, 1.6 SPG, 3.2 BPG

3. DeMarcus Cousins - Cousins is the most talented center in the NBA... Or at least, he will be in 3 years. Had he been born with the body of Bynum or Howard, he would be the next Shaquille O'Neal. His offensive game will be beyond any other center in the league in 3 years.
19.4 PPG, 8.9 RPG, 3.5 APG, 0.9 SPG, 1.1 BPG

4. Brook Lopez - The middle ground between Cousins' skill and Bynum's brawn, Lopez will be a terrific statistical center. 20, 9, and 2 are usually good for "best 5 in the league" discussions and Lopez should be in it sooner than later. His feathery touch gives him an edge inside and out.
17.7 PPG, 8.5 RPG, 1.2 APG, 0.8 SPG, 1.7 BPG

5. Al Horford - The reason Horford slipped is due to the nature of the discussion: I just don't see him as big enough to be considered the league's best center. If this list were for the best overall big men, Horford would be higher. But he's closer to the 4 than he is the 5 and therefore I can't put him above 4 guys who would physically frustrate him on both ends of the floor.
18.4 PPG, 10.3 RPG, 1.6 APG, 1.5 SPG, 2.0 BPG

6. JaVelle McGee - Too many tools not to be on here. A premiere shot blocker already, McGee should use his supreme combination of athleticism, size, and strength to sew up the middle and vacuum up rebounds, not to mention throwing down jaw-dropping slams for the next 10 years.
14.7 PPG, 10.5 RPG, 1.0 APG, 1.0 SPG, 2.9 BPG

7. Greg Monroe - Good passer, low post option, solid free throw shooter. Must rebound more consistently. Monroe is a knockoff Brook Lopez starter kit. His ranking sky rockets if he kicks the soft label.
17.6 PPG, 8.1 RPG, 2.7 APG, 0.9 SPG, 1.2 BPG

8. Mark Gasol - Mark is a true center and a defensive anchor, but he's not the offensive catalyst his brother is. I see him good for 11 boards and over 2 blocks a game, but without Pau's range and release, defenders can back off Mark to stuff up that smooth passing game of his and challenge him to shoot.
15.5 PPG, 10.8 RPG, 2.0 APG, 1.2 SPG, 2.2 BPG

9. Roy Hibbert - Excellent defensive presence while learning how to stay out of foul trouble. Could be the next player to average 4 blocks a game. A bigger Mutumbo; 2 inches bigger. If his body holds up, he'll be the beast of the central division.
14.0 PPG, 11.2 RPG, 1.1 APG, 0.9 SPG, 3.8 BPG

10. Jokim Noah - a very good center, but I just feel as though the ceiling is near with Noah. 12 and 12 seems to be his range. 
12.3 PPG, 12.0 RPG, 1.1 APG, 1.0 SPG, 1.5 BPG
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 7:12 am
Interesting list.

I think Serg Ibaka will be in the top 5. And Howard will be number 1, over Bynum.

Other than that, I think it is similar to what I have.
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 23, 2012 1:05 pm
wow, I have Gasol, Hibbert and Noah way higher on this list. Also, Ibaka is a PF not Center, otherwise he would on this list.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 9:08 am
Mr. Crackerz wrote:Interesting list.

I think Serg Ibaka will be in the top 5. And Howard will be number 1, over Bynum.

Other than that, I think it is similar to what I have.

Yyyeah, I thought of Ibaka as a PF (which, as a more fertile position, could be an intruiging topic in and of itself). But yeah. Ibaka, Love, David Lee... I see them all as 4's being forced to play 5. It was hard enough including Horford (whose a convert, at best).

GSW Hoops Fan: you have Hibbert high than 9? That's intriguing. His ceiling could definitely get him to the top 5, but big guys not only develop slow; the noticeably enormous (7'2" and above) usually have to battle through foul trouble, which I figured would keep him at 9. How does your list stack up?

Also, AJ: you see Kobe still playing in 3 years? Cause if not, Bynum's scoring should spike.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 25, 2012 7:02 pm
Bynums scoring could spike, and Howards numbers will go down. But its not what it looks like. Howard will be the 2nd or 3rd option in a team in 3 years, because he wants to team up with super stars. Bynum will be forced to do more with less. But Howard is still more talented, just not having to do as much as before.

Hopefully that wasn't too confusing. Been working a lot (plus i am sick), so I haven't been coherent all that much.
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PostPosted: Tue Feb 28, 2012 6:15 pm
I understand. I guess I'm just skeptical. Howard is already an offensive project that wouldn't look nearly as put together without his physical gifts. On - say - a Mavericks squad with Deron Williams and Dirk Nowitski, it's hard for me to believe he's gonna give Dallas more than 15 PPG. He's getting 8-10 on putbacks, but... Williams and Nowitski SEPARATELY take more shots than anyone Howard has ever played with. But together? I just don't see the looks going his way. Especially since Dirk is probably a better low post scorer, or at least a more polished one.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 01, 2012 5:14 pm
32 wrote:
Mr. Crackerz wrote:Interesting list.

I think Serg Ibaka will be in the top 5. And Howard will be number 1, over Bynum.

Other than that, I think it is similar to what I have.

Yyyeah, I thought of Ibaka as a PF (which, as a more fertile position, could be an intruiging topic in and of itself). But yeah. Ibaka, Love, David Lee... I see them all as 4's being forced to play 5. It was hard enough including Horford (whose a convert, at best).

GSW Hoops Fan: you have Hibbert high than 9? That's intriguing. His ceiling could definitely get him to the top 5, but big guys not only develop slow; the noticeably enormous (7'2" and above) usually have to battle through foul trouble, which I figured would keep him at 9. How does your list stack up?

Also, AJ: you see Kobe still playing in 3 years? Cause if not, Bynum's scoring should spike.


Ok, here are my rankings (just took yours and re-ordered them... )

1. Dwight Howard - The thing you need most out of your C is Defense. He is the leagues best defensive player for several years now and will be for several more years. He ancors the defense and he can over power many Centers out there. If he ever could develop a go to move he would be unstopable. You put him on a team that can run the pick and roll, with a capable point gaurd, and it is all over.

2. DeMarcus Cousins - This is a bit of a bold prediction. Kid is immature, but he appears to love the game. And he wants a big payday for sure, that may be enough motiviation. For a center he has great mobility and good feel for the game. He is big and has loads of talent. I think his will to want to prove everyone wrong is going to drive him to continually get better and better.

3. Andrew Bynum - He would be number 2 here I thought he could stay healthy. Problem is he can't. And even when he is on the floor his mobility isn't very good. I would like to see him sheed some pounds to take presure off of his Knee's and become a better defender.

4. Mark Gasol - This guy is way under rated in my opinion. Well, not by his team who shelled out the cash to keep him. He has offensive skills and can pass incrediably well for a big man. He is no push over on defense either. Incrediably smart player.

5. Roy Hibbert - Physical Specimen. This guy is a tank, is young and can really play D. I don't think he has the tools or skills to be an eliete offensive player though.

6. Jokim Noah - This guy is very mobile and is a great energy guy. To get that out of you C is awsome. When your C is your most energetic guy, it trickles down to the rest of the team.

7. Greg Monroe - I didn't like him his first year... but he is getting better and better. His Ball IQ is great and he is going to be great offinsive threat in a couple years. Don't think his D will be on par though.

8. JaVelle McGee - He should be higher... but don't think he has enough between the ears to pull it together.

9. DeAndre Jordan - He is a defensive monster. So athletic. With CP3 running the point he is also a offensive threat. A couple more years and he will be blocking shots left and right and finishing plays at the rim. Just don't run plays for him.

10. Brook Lopez - I almost removed him of this list. I pulled Al Hortford because I think he needs to be a PF, otherwise I would have Horford here. Brook is just not good enough of the defensive end. And anyone who can't win more games with for the Nets in a weak East Conferense with Williams running the point, means there is something wrong there.

Other players to keep an eye on: Toronto's '11 pick Valanciunas, '12 draft prospect Davis, '12 prospect Drumound, Pheonix's Gortat
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 12:58 pm
Good stuff... Question, though: do Jordan, Noah, or even Cousins stay that highly ranked without the point guards they have? Cause, to me, Noah and Jordan are bottom-feeders... Granted, insanely tall and athletic bottom feeders, but yeah. If they didn't have the point guards they have, I dunno if either is on this list.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 1:52 pm
32 wrote:Good stuff... Question, though: do Jordan, Noah, or even Cousins stay that highly ranked without the point guards they have? Cause, to me, Noah and Jordan are bottom-feeders... Granted, insanely tall and athletic bottom feeders, but yeah. If they didn't have the point guards they have, I dunno if either is on this list.


I would say yes. Because their primary attribute is not scoring. It is defense and rebounding. Jordan, maybe I can agree there, but in 3 years I think he will be better.
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 6:16 pm
GSW Hoops Fan wrote:
32 wrote:Good stuff... Question, though: do Jordan, Noah, or even Cousins stay that highly ranked without the point guards they have? Cause, to me, Noah and Jordan are bottom-feeders... Granted, insanely tall and athletic bottom feeders, but yeah. If they didn't have the point guards they have, I dunno if either is on this list.


I would say yes. Because their primary attribute is not scoring. It is defense and rebounding. Jordan, maybe I can agree there, but in 3 years I think he will be better.

I suppose it's splitting hairs, but I just can't put Noah as high as 6.

For argument's sake, I'd like to acknowledge that Brook Lopez is an offensive piece on any team, whereas several guys you listed above him (but mainly Noah and Jordan) are almost entirely dependent on their PG's to give them any sort of offense... And even then, it tops out at about 10 PPG.

To take it one step further... Noah and Jordan have exceptional help on the glass, whereas Lopez has simply Kris Humphries (whose sole fantasy value is in RPG). Would Lopez' 18 and 7 be of more use to Chicago than Noah's 10 and 11?
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 4:21 pm
Naturally, after the trade, I realized I made the horrible mistake of omitting Mr. Bogut (as his season-ender made me forget about him). Here's my revised list with the Aussie in check this time:

1. Andrew Bynum, LAL
2. Dwight Howard, ORL
3. DeMarcus Cousins, SAC
4. Brook Lopez, NJN
5. Andrew Bogut, GSW
6. Al Horford, ATL
7. JaValle McGee, WAS
8. Greg Monroe, DET
9. Mark Gasol, MEM
10. Roy Hibbert, IND

What do you dudes say? Too high? Too low? Hometown bias?
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2012 9:43 am
I think he is better than Lopez. Lopez is good, but does little besides scoring, at least compared to Bogut. On the other hand, Monroe and Hibbert might become better, depends on their consistency. Maybe Bogut becomes even better here, than he was in Milwaukee. Need to wait for the next season to be sure.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2012 4:56 pm
Yeah, I'm admittedly high on Lopez. Big guys take a long time to develop, so I think his rebounding will come as he fills out. Aside from that, he's already a near 20 PPG scorer who blocks his share of shots. If he bumps his rebounds from 6 to 8, and his line looks more like a 18-8-1.5 guy, than I think he'll come up on a lotta people's boards.

Illustrating the point, Andrew Bogut has transformed into a defensive kingpin after being seen as a bit of a bumbler on D in his first 3 seasons. Whose to say Lopez can't gain 15 pounds and suddenly grab a couple extra rebounds per game?

I'm also really high on Hibbert, though I'm hesitant to annoint him seeing as most guys over 7'1" typically bust... The exception possibly being Yao, but even he washed outta the league on injuries. It's tough for guys that tall to stay healthy.
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