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Tim Duncan going up for a block against the Rockets Jeremy Lin
Ibaka became one of the best frontcourt defenders in the NBA last season, which was supported by his second-place finish in the Defensive Player of the Year award.
At 6'10, 240 pounds and a body that looks like it was carved out of marble, Ibaka is a tremendous athlete and will only improve on the defensive end of the court. As of right now, Ibaka is more renown for his tendency to go for a highlight block rather than staying down and defending his man.
Timmy D remains one of the top frontcourt defenders in the league. Had this list been extended to 10 players, he would definitely be on it.
In his late thirties, Duncan is still a fabulous post defender, but he seems to have lost a step against quicker power forwards. In retrospect to Ibaka, Duncan has never been an elite athlete. Instead, he positions his body to stay in front of post-players and registers 2.5 blocks per game while hardly ever jumping more than six inches off of the ground.
Yes, the DPOY last year is not one of the top five frontcourt defenders in the NBA.
Although he changed the Knicks team from a ranked 27 defense in 2010-11 to a top 11 defense in 2011-12, he has not been doing quite as well this year. The Knicks actually have a defensive rating of 99.3 when Chandler is on the bench, which is 5.6 points better than when Chandler is on the court. That is not to say that Chandler has regressed defensively, but opposing frontcourt players are beginning to exploit one of Chandler's weaknesses, which is his inability to play effective defense outside of the paint.
Howard, without question, is the master of protecting the paint. His ability to alter shots around the rim and control the paint led to him receiving three consecutive DPOY awards.
This season however, Howard looks like he has lost a step. Back surgery is a long process to recover from, and maybe that's why he seems slower than his usual self back in Orlando. With and without him on the floor, the Lakers are right around the same defensive rating, which is rather intriguing considering that the Lakers don't have a capable defender off the bench other than World Peace. In past seasons, Howard would definitely be in the top five, but this list is based on the current play around the league.