Fantasy Doctor, NBA / Sep 20, 2010 / 10:00 am

Top 10 Fantasy Power Forwards in 2010-11

Dirk Nowitzki

Dirk Nowitzki (photo. Monte Isom)

We’ve covered point guards, shooting guards and small forwards, which means it’s time to take on the projected top 10 fantasy power forwards for the upcoming NBA season. With some big names in new places, there were a few tough decisions here. Voice your opinions below, and keep in mind that we’re using nine categories.

1. Dirk Nowitzki: Stop yawning. Unlike some of the other names on this list, Nowitzki didn’t make a big splash in the summer’s free-agency period, opting to re-sign with the Mavs instead. The good news is that that means he shouldn’t have any trouble replicating the trustworthy value he’s been giving fantasy owners for the past decade. If you’re looking for holes, you won’t find them here. The only unknown will be how Diggler wears his mop this season.

2. Pau Gasol: He averaged a double-double for the first time in his NBA career last season, thrusting him into the upper-stratum of fantasy appeal. He’s the best-rounded big man for fantasy purposes, and with a FIBA-free summer of rest, Gasol is set to resume his strong play for the Lakers this season. When Andrew Bynum racks up his annual wave of DNPs in 2010-11, watch out.

3. David Lee: Lee had himself a great 2009-10, and the good news is that he managed to leave the fast-paced Knicks for an even faster-paced Warriors squad. In two games against the Warriors last season, he averaged 27 points, 14 rebounds, 6 assists and a steal. The chances for Lee to put up gaudy lines will abound this year.

4. Amar’e Stoudemire: He’ll be the man in New York this season, which ensures that he’ll get more shots and points. While the prospect of huge numbers is obviously there for Stoudemire this season, the question will be how he’ll fare without Steve Nash feeding him the ball. Also, if STAT doesn’t improve his rebounding and shot-blocking, he could disappoint a multitude of fantasy owners licking their chops at taking him in the first round of their drafts.

5. Josh Smith: We all know what Smith is about: steals, blocks and a dismal touch at the charity stripe. This summer, he’s been preparing for a faster offense, courtesy of new coach Larry Drew. Smith hasn’t been hitting the weight room as often, but he’s working on his skills and conditioning. A faster pace could mean good things for this athletic forward.

6. Chris Bosh: Many fantasy owners will be down on Bosh’s value heading into this season, and rightfully so. Nevertheless, the “lap dog” of the summer should continue to rebound well, and the good news is that his strong shooting percentages will remain intact.

7. Carlos Boozer: Boozer will continue to be an appealing fantasy player in Chicago, where he finds himself playing with a talented point guard and a polished roster. His stats shouldn’t budge drastically from last season, though Joakim Noah‘s rebounding abilities could knock Boozer off of his career double-digit rebounding average.

8. Tim Duncan: He just won’t go away. Every year, many of us expect Duncan to finally take that nosedive into age-driven decline, but he continues to pull some kind of magic out his hat o’ tricks, similar to what Steve Nash and Jason Kidd have been able to do. He’ll be entering this season a bit lighter, which bodes well for his body’s ability to hold up down the stretch of the season. Duncan should continue to be a very usable fantasy big man, though his days of averaging a double-double could be numbered. The good news is that concerns about his health can probably be laid to rest – he’s only missed 19 games in the past five seasons.

9. David West: His averages don’t jump out at you, but the fact of the matter is West doesn’t have any weaknesses. His shooting percentages are great, he grabs rebounds, dishes out a good number of assists, and is always approaching 1 steal/1 block per game. With Chris Paul back and Trevor Ariza in New Orleans, the floor should be spread well for West to continue rolling right along.

10. Hedo Turkoglu: We’re used to seeing him as a SF, but in Phoenix’s quirky lineup, Turkoglu is set to start at PF. There’s a lot to like about his chances for a bounce-back season, all stemming from his seemingly perfect fit in the Suns’ offensive schemes. Expect him to approach his averages from his Orlando days. The only possible downside is the surplus of SG/SF/PF players in Phoenix, which could limit Turkoglu’s minutes.

On the cusp: Zach Randolph, Kevin Love, Troy Murphy, Jeff Green, Kevin Garnett, Andray Blatche, Paul Millsap

Throughout the season, be sure to leave your questions, comments, concerns, trade offers, roster problems and more in the comments below.

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  • lp

    Zach randolph is a double double machine…please place him at 7…

  • Heckler

    no mention of LaMarcus Aldridge or Luis Scola?
    are they listed as centers?

  • JA

    Unless he falls off a cliff in NJ, Murphy will be more valuable than Turk. They’ll hit the same amount of 3’s and score around the same points. Murph will be slightly higher in Rebs+Assts as well as in Stls+Blks. Plus I would prefer the much higher FG% Troy brings vs the horrible shooting Hedo.

    Z-Bo is a double double machine, but does little in the support stats.

  • ay yo..

    David Lee should be listed at center, since he played center exclusively last yr.

  • http://dimemag.com/author/the-fantasy-doctor/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @Heckler: They’re PF/Cs, of course, but I would rank them at PF first. I had to cut the list off somewhere, and they were on the other end of the line. I don’t like Aldridge’s ceiling with Oden returning (again), though if Oden goes down (again), Aldridge will see a nice boost.

    I don’t like Scola’s ceiling with Yao returning.

    Again, these guys could’ve easily been added to “On the cusp,” but I had to draw the line somewhere.

  • http://dimemag.com/author/the-fantasy-doctor/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @JA: Murphy is nice, no doubt, but with coach Avery Johnson saying Lopez and Harris are the only guarantees to start, something of a timeshare with Favors looks more and more likely. And I really doubt Murphy will hand out more assists than Turk. Turkoglu just has a much higher ceiling, which is what puts him over the top.

  • http://dimemag.com/author/the-fantasy-doctor/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @ay yo..: The past is the past. Andris Biedrins will likely start at center, though Lee will get his share of time there, too.

  • http://dimemag.com/author/the-fantasy-doctor/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @JA: (Sorry if you meant, literally, “rebounds plus assists.” Even if you did, I’m not so sure Murphy will get more of that total than Turk.)

  • JA

    @Doc – yes, combined rebs + assts. Murphy and his 10 rebs and 2 asts beat Hedo and his 5 rebs and 5 assist. Assuming you are in a league that counts each category/stat with the same weighting.

  • http://dimemag.com/author/the-fantasy-doctor/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @JA: If you assume Murphy remains a double-double guy, yes, you’re right. I’m not so optimistic about that.

  • http://dimemag.com/author/the-fantasy-doctor/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @JA: Also, assists are more rare, which should factor into the overall equation.

  • Ric Hardwood

    as much as I’d hate to disagree with the Fantasy Doctor, Turkoglu is at his best when he holds the ball. With Nash, Turk will probably do the same thing he did in Toronto… wait outside the 3-point line. He’ll probably put up Rashard Lewis numbers… so not top 10 material, but on the cusp as well.

  • http://dimemag.com/author/the-fantasy-doctor/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @Ric Hardwood: No worries about disagreeing — that just means better discussions. I’m of the mind that Turk will hurt Nash’s time with the ball more than the other way around. Nothing major, but that’s just my expectation.

  • JA

    Turk will hurt Nash’s stats due to the fact that Hedo barely shoots 40% and will refuse to run the floor.

  • Bane

    Does anyone remember Hedo playing PF on Sacto when CWebb went out. He put up solid numbers.

  • Curtis G

    @ the Fantasy Doctor:
    You don’t like the ceiling for Scola with Yao returning? Even though he has proven to be consistent whether Yao is in the lineup or not? Hasn’t Scola been the second leading player in the NBA with double doubles behind Dwight for the last two or three years? I can see leaving Aldridge off the list because of his tendency to be a non-factor for the Blazers at times although that also means one-dimesional players like Josh Smith shouldn’t have made the list and novelty position players like Turkoglu definitely shouldn’t have made the list. But leaving Scola off when he is consistently a driving force for the Rockets night in and night out in some way whether on the boards or dropping buckets is a huge and unforgivable oversight. Hell, you could have at least gave him the “on the cusp” status over everyone on the cusp list except Randolph and Garnett!

  • http://dimemag.com/author/the-fantasy-doctor/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @Curtis G: I’m standing firm on Scola. He’s solid, for sure, but this isn’t the same Rockets’ team of yore. Aaron Brooks and Kevin Martin are going to power that offense, which changes things a bit for Scola. And no, Scola was far from second in double-doubles (he has never averaged a double-double in his three NBA seasons). He was 19th last season and 20th the year before that.

    And Smith is a stud with steals and blocks — two hard-to-find dimensions right there.

  • Curtis G

    You care to wager that Smith’s blocks and steals will decrease next year? Steals are usually a product of running plays in the half court set where opposing defenses have a chance to read and/or play the passing lanes. With ATL going to a more running and gunning style, I see a statistical drop in not only Smith’s steals, but his rebounds and blocks… all of which had been helped by the previous offensive sets that ATL ran. Honestly, the only category I see him improving upon statistically is his point per game average which should take on a decidedly more “Amare-ish” turn for the better depending upon how he is used in this new offensive scheme. And for the record, Scola’s career 16/8 is on par with Smith’s 14/9 averages and could even be considered better in that Scola still finds ways to be relevant in games where he cannot score consistently, unlike Smith who can be outmuscled, out-jumped, and generally outplayed by more athletic or more offensively skilled and diverse big men. Oh, and I suppose I stand by my argument that Scola should have been on this list in some way, shape, form, or fashion. I guess we’re going to have to agree to disagree on this one…

  • http://dimemag.com/author/the-fantasy-doctor/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @Curtis G: Keep in mind we’re talking about fantasy basketball here, which means getting outmuscled and outjumped (By the way, are you kidding here? Have you seen Smith play and use his insane vertical? Have you seen Scola play? Compared to Smith, Scola plays like he has concrete shoes on.) doesn’t matter so long as you put up the numbers. In fantasy circles, taking Scola over Smith is suicide. Smith’s steals and blocks put him far and above Scola — for *fantasy* basketball.

  • spike

    i hope u put al jefferson at center…also, klove is gonna be beast this year..who else is gonna rebound for minny? Lastly, lets not forget zach randolph was an all star last year..his numbers were way better then duncans

  • Curtis G

    @ Fantasy Doctor:
    I’ll meet you halfway on this and concede that from a fantasy aspect, Smith might be a better choice. And, yes, I have seen him play and he doesn’t fare well against the Dwight Howards, Andrew Bynums and even the Lebron James’ of the NBA. Face up to the basket in a half court set is probably when he’s at his worst so he should be thanking Atlanta that they went out and got someone that is going to play to his strengths. Ironically, this new offensive set is going to wreak havoc on JJ’s game and take away one of his most important weapons (one on one penetration). That’s likley still be the played called at the end of close games, but still. Where did you have him ranked for fantasy purposes because I am sure he is going to suffer because of the changes. He’s been consistent in ATL but transition game and running the court has never really been JJ’s thing so I can totally see every single one of his averages (except assists) taking a hit next season.

  • http://dimemag.com/author/the-fantasy-doctor/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @spike: Yes, Jefferson is a center. Love is a beast, but he still plays in Minnesota, where logical minute distributions are hard to find. Randolph was a beast, and I wouldn’t be surprised if TD dipped below Z-Bo this season, but Duncan’s blocks and assists still make him appealing.

  • http://dimemag.com/author/the-fantasy-doctor/ The Fantasy Doctor

    @Curtis G: Against D-Ho and Bynum, it’s mostly a matter of height, not jumping, for Smith. I agree that the new schemes in ATL are a risk for Johnson’s value, but he did OK for himself in Phoenix’s early run-and-gun days. I just don’t think it’ll be that much of a downer for his value. He’s still far-and-away the best all-around scoring option they have, and it’s tough for me to believe the Hawks will push a system that will cause their new nine-digit-salary man to struggle. I still have him ranked in the 20-25 range overall (in nine-category leagues), but your concerns are mine as well.

  • http://www.blacksnakes.com yao

    LUIS SCOLA !! Is scola is wanna of the top ten power forward in the nba period that shit is fact

  • Rockco

    Hedo c’mon son!