Best Draft Prospects: Power Forwards
(Note: Heights and weights are from the draft combine, with fractions rounded up. For the complete list of official measurements, click here .) Davis is the consensus No. 1 pick after leading the Wildcats to a national title and being named National Player of the Year. His defensive impact, length, athleticism, team-oriented play and potential to improve offensively have some scouts believing that he could have a career similar to Kevin Garnett's. Perhaps the only consistent knock on Davis is that he needs to add strength.
The breakout star of the 2011-12 season, Robinson wowed scouts with his effort and intangibles. He possesses NBA-caliber speed, strength and scoring ability, and his NCAA-high 27 double-doubles turned many skeptics into believers. Though his size remains an issue, Robinson is one of the safest picks in the draft. He's likely to go in the top five.
Arguably the most naturally gifted prospect in the draft, Jones has the makeup of a perennial NBA All-Star. He's tremendously talented and freakishly athletic, traits that he showcased in spurts throughout his sophomore season. After averaging just 14 points and failing to assert his dominance, however, he's also developed a reputation as inconsistent. He's a high-risk, high-reward pick who should go anywhere from the middle to end of the lottery.
A known quantity, Sullinger has been the same player since his arrival at Ohio State. He's a bullishly strong interior presence with a polished repertoire of low-post moves. Despite his consistent stats (he averaged 17.5 points last year, 17.3 as a freshman), though, NBA scouts question how his size and athleticism will translate to the next level. He's expected to go in the lottery, but could go either early or late.
Sometimes overlooked behind Kentucky's history-making freshmen, Jones was an enigma during the Wildcats' run to the title. He alternated between dominating and disappearing, displaying uncommon versatility before checking out for minutes at a time. Jones needs to improve his three-point shot (he shot just 32.7 percent in 2011-12), but boasts the athleticism and upside of a lottery pick.
A slender big man who improved in each of his three years on campus, Henson impressed scouts with his game-changing defensive impact. He ranked 12th in the NCAA with 2.89 blocks per game, and he led the ACC in defensive win shares (5.6). But his rail-thin frame gives many teams pause, and his lack of a perimeter presence (he attempted just 24 three-pointers in his UNC career) limits his versatility. Still, given his motor, defense and rebounding, Henson could be selected in the middle of the first round.
As far as raw potential goes, Moultrie is one of the most attractive power forwards on the board. He's big, athletic and deceptively quick, and he averaged 16.4 points and 10.5 rebounds during his standout junior campaign. He comes with plenty of question marks, though. He hasn't faced the level of competition that many of his peers have (he played just one season at Mississippi State after transferring from UTEP) and has a tendency to hover around the perimeter too frequently. He's projected to go somewhere in the mid-to-late first round.
A relative unknown entering March, Nicholson exploded onto the national scene behind strong A-10 and NCAA tournaments. He averaged 25.3 points and 10.2 rebounds over his final nine games, earning comparisons to David West for his well-rounded play. Nicholson has a ceiling, to be certain, but he also seems like a safe bet. After a four-year collegiate career, he is expected to go in the latter half of the first round.
One of three players in Michigan State history with more than 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds, Green has emerged as a model of versatility. He can score, pass and rebound, a trio of tools that helped the Spartans clinch a No. 1 seed in 2012. Green is undersized and athletically limited, but he seems to have the multifaceted skill set to make up for it. Scouts see him as a late first-round or early second-round pick and potentially a high-impact bench player as a rookie.
Jones isn't the flashiest prospect in the draft, but he may well be one of the most consistent. He notched 21 double-doubles as a senior, fourth in the NCAA, and pulled down 10.9 rebounds per game, tops in the Big East. His below-average positional size raises doubts, but it's hard to ignore his production. He's regarded as a high second-round pick.