Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard is taking the league by storm. At only 23, the 6 foot 11 inch Howard will be a superstar for many years to come.
Howard, who was the number one pick in the 2004 draft , is averaging over 20 points per game this season. He is also leading the league in rebounding (14.1 per game) and blocks (3.2 per game).
Although Howard does not own an amazing array of post moves, he dominates opposing big men with his pure athleticism and brute strength. He also blocks almost every shot put up with his length and jumping abilities.
These skills are not traditional for big men such as Patrick Ewing, Kevin McHale, and Wilt Chamberlain who put up big numbers by out-maneuvering them in the paint.
With Howard being widely considered the best big man in the NBA, it got me thinking. How does Howard's game rank against the big dipper himself, Wilt Chamberlain.
Chamberlain, who retired in 1973, played in an entirely different era then Howard. An era where players weren't as tall as today. This gave the 7 foot 2 Chamberlain an immense advantage.
If you go on stats alone, Chamberlain wins that battle easily.
"The Stilt" averaged a record 30.1 points per game throughout his career. He also averaged a record 22.9 rebounds per game!
He holds the single-game records for points (100) and rebounds (55).
And he could dish the rock as well.
Aside from his rebounding and scoring, the seven-footer also led the NBA in assists through the 1967-68 season.
The statistical edge obviously goes to Chamberlain at this point, but give him ten years. Who knows, maybe Dwight Howard will increase his rebounding by eight per game and scoring by 10.