Culture of Hoops

Fantasy Basketball: Top 10 Power Forwards in 2014

Image courtesy of Keith Allison/Flickr.

Image courtesy of Keith Allison/Flickr.

2014 has come to an end and we at Baller Mind Frame took a quick look at the top fantasy basketball players by position. How did we determine who the top players are? We used our Player Rater, filtered by position and set to “cumulative wins,” then checked to see which players had the best WARP scores.

For those of you who are new to the site and are using our Player Rater for the first time, WARP stands for “wins above replacement player” and is a measure of the number of wins better (or worse) a player is compared to the average replacement—or waiver wire—player in head-to-head fantasy leagues. By setting the filter to “cumulative wins” we can see the total wins contributed by the players we’re ranking, and not just based on their per-game averages. This allows us to see their impact for the period set, which in this case is year-to-date, and excludes players who may have played a couple of good games and then disappeared.

Here are the top 10 power forwards in 2014:

  1. Anthony Davis (11.62)
  2. LaMarcus Aldridge (6.64)
  3. Pau Gasol (5.77)
  4. Kevin Love (5.69)
  5. Serge Ibaka (5.60)
  6. Tim Duncan (5.59)
  7. Paul Millsap (5.36)
  8. Dirk Nowitzki (5.02)
  9. Tobias Harris (4.77)
  10. Blake Griffin (4.73)

Notable Inclusions

Anthony Davis is the top player in fantasy basketball right now. No “ifs” or “buts” about it. He’s such a beast and maybe, just maybe, we’re seeing the end of the era where small forwards (LeBron James, Kevin Durant) dominate the top spot in fantasy. Either way, it’s going to be fun to watch Davis achieve what he can this season. And no, he is nowhere near his peak yet. Wow!

Despite his age, it appears that Tim Duncan will remain a card-carrying member of this list until he finally retires. You go, Tim! Age is just a number. I suppose you can say the same thing about the ever-durable and ever-reliable Dirk Nowitzki.

Pau Gasol has been very productive in his first year with the Chicago Bulls. He’s put up some classic Pau Gasol stat lines in 2014 and his motivation to win another championship is fueling his excellent averages. He is currently returning far better value than his ADP on draft day, and should be able to stay the course assuming he doesn’t get too fatigued down the stretch.

Tobias Harris is a welcome sight on this list. The hard work he put in to improve his long-range and low-post game over the offseason has clearly paid off. He’s legit and has earned true fantasy keeper status. Harris is scoring four more points per game than last season, and is now making 1.2 threes per game, compared to just 0.5 in 2013-14.

Notably Absent

Chris Bosh (4.37) is the only notable absentee from the top 10. He suffered a calf injury that caused him to miss more than a few games. He should rejoin the list as soon as he gets more games under his belt. He’s still the (new) main man in Miami and will be a fantasy force this season.

Joining Bosh on the bubble are Derrick Favors (3.87) and Markieff Morris (3.41). Their WARP scores aren’t high enough to warrant inclusion, but they deserve shout-outs nonetheless for their great production so far.

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