The 10 Strongest Pound-for-Pound Players in the NBA Today
Certain NBA players pose a threat when they step on the court, not just by their scoring or defensive acumen, but by their physical prowess. Walking onto the court against the likes of Ben Wallace or Dwight Howard can be scary simply for the fact that their upper arm muscles are bigger than your head.
A team that has such a strong player finds an edge in certain areas. Extraordinarily strong players can help a team in rebounding in particular. Also, they can provide a nice scoring punch inside.
The best physical specimens in the NBA may be great all-around players or specialists in particular areas.
Following is a list of the strongest players in the NBA.
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LeBron James is a deceptively massive superstar player, not that he wasn’t massive to begin with. James is listed as 6’8” and 250 pounds. However, a Sports Illustrated article by Chris Ballard featured NBA players and personnel estimating his weight as anywhere between 260 and 274 pounds.
James’ immaculate physique simply tops off the game that makes him one of the best ever. That grand musculature aids his explosiveness, his impeccable rebounding ability, his defensive strengths and his agility.
Stephen Jackson summed up the greatness of James’ body by telling Ballard that guarding James is like “guarding a brick wall.”
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Amar’e Stoudemire has been a force in NBA frontcourts for as long as he has in part due to his resilient strength training. After suffering a knee injury that forced him to miss almost all of the 2006-07 season, Stoudemire did a weight training course to make his strength work better on the court.
I started working out my junior year with the typical high school mentality of trying to bench as much as possible. Now I realize the important things I have to do to make me better on the court, like the flexibility and balance work I do with Erik [Phillips, Phoenix Suns head strength and conditioning coach].
With incredible functional strength, Stoudemire has managed to remain a force on the inside long after he was supposed have had his career derailed. He holds his anchor superbly when grabbing rebounds and goes up with unquestionable strength when scoring underneath.
Metta World Peace
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Metta World Peace has long been a scary player. Some remain concerned with his on-court behavior. What is more alarming about him than his on-court episodes is his great strength. World Peace packs a terrifying 260 pounds on his 6’7” body.
He puts his muscular body to work both on and off the court. He goes aggressively after the ball when guarding an opponent. Also, he lays immense pressure on the ball-handler with his strapping upper body.
As he told Men’s Fitness Magazine, “My game is hard to appreciate because it’s totally different from other players’. I like to put my body to battle.”
During the offseason, he does at least four full-day workouts per week.
His drive pays off when he presses opponents on defense.
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Tony Allen has a little talked-about weapon in his defensive arsenal. Allen is a remarkably strong player. His lean 6’4”, 214-pound frame is chiseled with muscle.
Among full-time starting guards, Allen has the highest bench repetition figure of any listed on DraftExpress.com.
His strength is quite functional on the court. Allen puts his arm strength to good use as he swipes for a steal from the ball-handler or surehandedly snatches a pass out of the air. Allen might be a bit less effective on the defensive end if he didn’t have the effective physique he has.
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Ben Wallace isn’t the remarkable defender he once was, but he remains an extremely strong player. Wallace has the massive musculature to go with his signature hand-eye coordination, positioning and hand placement.
In his career, Wallace has put all of it together to become a prolific rebounder and shot-blocker.
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Carl Landry might never have a career trajectory like that of almost any other player on this list. He’s predominantly a bench player or a starter on a bad or mediocre team.
Despite that, Landry possesses an imposing musculature. Landry’s 6’9”, 245-pound frame features massive biceps. He had 21 repetitions on the bench press in his pre-draft camp, according to DraftExpress.com.
Landry uses his great strength effectively on the court, especially on the boards. He holds a solid anchor as he goes up for a rebound.
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Kris Humphries is more than just a strong guy who once had Kim Kardashian’s eye. He’s a lumberjack of a man. He did 22 repetitions of 185 pounds on the bench press during his pre-draft camp, according to DraftExpress.com.
That strength translates well into his inside game. Humphries is a regular threat to grab 10 rebounds in a game. He matches his strength with his balance and jumping ability to float steadily in the air to grab rebounds.
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While he isn’t the biggest, scariest player on the court at any time, Ben Gordon can make people jump with his impressive strength. Gordon is only 6’3”, but he holds 200 pounds on his rock-hard frame.
He does a remarkable 300 pounds on the bench, according to ESPN. He’s also quite long, with a 6’8.5” wingspan.
Gordon’s strength helps his offense. He combines his heavy dribbling with his strength and length to create separation to take reasonable shots.
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Blake Griffin has a musculature that forces opponents to check themselves when guarding him. His strength is daunting. In a pre-draft camp, he wowed scouts by doing 22 repetitions on the bench press, per DraftExpress.com.
Griffin puts that strength in effect when patrolling the low post. He slams the ball home with such authority that defenders might as well concede the space between him and the basket when he faces up with them. His balance and strength combine to make him an impressive rebounder as well.
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Dwight Howard's musculature can't be underestimated. He possesses such massive arms that he could accidentally choke a normal person by hugging him or her inside his arm.
Howard does a solid 365 pounds on the bench press, per Stack Magazine.
His strength is intimidating on the court. He's able to rise above the rest with explosiveness and fluidity. His eye-popping rebounding numbers come to no surprise as one looks at his massive biceps.