Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Power forwards to watch in the 2015 NCAA Tournament

The power forward position in the NBA is presently LOADED with good players. Cracking the rotation of an NBA team as a BIG is tough. You start with Anthony Davis as the premier power forward in the game. He is followed by skilled and athletic players such as Blake Griffin, LaMarcus Aldridge, Zach Randolph, and Paul Millsap. The further down you look at the most recent NBA power forward efficiency rankings you see names outside of the top 30 like David West, Markieff Morris, and Nene. The point is, the current NBA power forward landscape has little room for growth. Any college power forward will have to be pretty special to deserve minutes in an NBA game next fall. ...Let's examine the players we will watch the closest during the 2015 NCAA Tournament.

Johnson is an NBA athlete! 
Brice Johnson - North Carolina 6'9" 210 lbs. - junior. ...Johnson is the most efficient (per-minute) power forward in the Tournament. He will need to add weight to bang in the NBA but his athleticism and ability to finish in transition are ELITE! Johnson does not shoot the three-ball at all which is why I view him more as a PF.

Kennedy Meeks - North Carolina 6'9" 279 lbs. - sophomore. ...Meeks is a traditional power forward with a big butt that can score in the low post. He shoots 55% FG (career), and he rebounds the ball at a high level. Meeks needs to improve his free throw shooting (just 64% FT).

Domantas Sabonis - Gonzaga 6'10" 230 lbs. - freshman. ...The son of international hoops legend Arvydas Sabonis, Domantas is gaining playing time as an effective BIG for the Zags. He is a terrific defender that had the best defensive rating in the West Coast Conference.

Bonzie Colson - Notre Dame 6'5" 226 lbs. - freshman. ...Colson has added a tremendous deal of efficiency to Notre Dame's attack. The freshman is shooting 62.9% FG as an under-sized post. He might remind you of P.J. Tucker when Tucker was a freshman at Texas.

Bobby Portis - Arkansas 6'10" 242 lbs. - sophomore. ...Portis can bang inside but he also has the finesse to hit face up jumpers. Portis converts on 36% of his three point attempts (career). Portis averages 17 points and eight boards per game.

Jalen Reynolds - Xavier 6'9" 222 lbs. - sophomore. ...Reynolds is a sophomore but he is already 22 years-old. He rebounds the ball and shoots a high percentage (60% FG - career).

TaShawn Thomas - Oklahoma 6'8" 240 lbs. Senior. ...Thomas, a transfer from Houston, has added scoring punch to the Sooners. He averages 11.3 points, and six rebounds per game.

Jameel McKay - Iowa St. 6'9" 215 lbs. junior. ...McKay adds a shot blocking presence to Iowa St. He also shoots a high percentage (58% FG).

Montrezl Harrell - Louisville 6'8" 235 lbs. junior. ...In our opinion, no front-line player "brings it" more than Harrell. He is a determined, physical player.

Perry Ellis - Kansas 6'8" 225 lbs. junior. ...Dependable, and capable, Ellis will likely have to score more in the absence of Cliff Alexander. Ellis has raised his scoring and rebounding averages with each season.

Jordan Bell - Oregon 6'7" 190 lbs. freshman. ...Bell has an uncanny ability to block shots.

Rico Gathers - Baylor 6'8" 280 lbs. junior. ...Gathers is a rebounding machine!

Ryan Spangler - Oklahoma 6'8" 232 lbs. junior. ...Spangler is a 58% field goal shooter (career).

Justin Moss - Buffalo 6'7" 240 lbs. junior. ...Led the MAC in scoring (17.2 ppg), and rebounding (9.2 rpg.). 

Centers to watch in the 2015 NCAA Tournament. 

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