Who says all the good centers are gone from the NBA?
Dwight Howard, Roy Hibbert, Joakim Noah, DeMarcus Cousins and quite a few more players would beg to differ, though it's true that the dominant back-to-the-basket guys are a bit fewer and farther between than they were in the 1980s and '90s. Then again, don't tell that to Al Jefferson.
But which center is the best of the bunch? Some young guns are threatening the established regime of top centers, showcasing immense athleticism, shot-blocking prowess and all-around excellence. Did any of them make it to the pole position, though?
The NBA 200 metric identifies the players who performed the best during the 2013-14 season. Potential doesn't matter, and neither does reputation. It's all about what happened this season—and this season only.
All positions are graded using the same criteria (though rim protection was added into the equation for bigger positions), but the categories are weighted differently in order to reflect changing roles, with max scores in parentheses:
- Scoring (20)
- Non-Scoring Offense: Facilitating (5) and Off-Ball Offense (10)
- Defense: On-Ball (10), Off-Ball (15) and Rim Protection (15)
- Rebounding (15)
- Intangibles: Conduct (5) and Durability (5)
For a full explanation of how these scores were determined, go here. And do note that these aren't your father's classification schemes for each position. Players' spots were determined not by playing style but rather by how much time they spent at each position throughout the season, largely based upon data from 82games.com. We're also expanding the traditional five spots on the floor to include four combo positions.
In the case of ties, the order is determined in subjective fashion by ranking the more coveted player in the higher spot. That was done by a voting committee comprised of myself, NBA Lead Writer D.J. Foster, National NBA Featured Columnist Grant Hughes, NBA Lead Writer Josh Martin and Associate NBA Editor Ethan Norof.