Nikola Jovic and Keegan Murray, Top NBA Draft Power Forward Prospects

Powering Through the Forwards: The 2022 Draft’s Best Power Forwards

The Power Forward position is both deeper and more top-heavy than centers (and more top heavy than any other position this year.)

Power Forward is now one of the most needed positions in the NBA and a good 4 can make or break both a team’s offense and defense. Players like Draymond Green or PJ Tucker will not wow you with their stats but are incredibly important to their teams. 

Overall rankings are based on the latest edition of the Draft Prospect Big Board.

1 Overall – Chet Holmgren

20: 7’1 200 Big Gonzaga. Comp= smaller but better passing KP.

“Chet is too skinny.” You will hear it all the time. Chet is the most technically sound defender to come out of the NCAA since Tim Duncan. While his body has limitations, his footwork, effort, and timing combat that. Chet is not going to be the first option on a championship team, but he might be their best player. 

2 Overall – Paolo Banchero

9: 6’9 240 Big Duke (Italy) Comp= Domnatas Sabonis+ 

Paolo is a scorer. His passing is also intriguing. The thing that worries me is how incapable he seemed as a defender in the small ball 5 role. That being said, his strengths far outweigh any weaknesses and Paolo is probably the best pure scorer in the draft class. 

3 Overall – Jabari Smith Jr.

19: 6’10 210 Front Court Auburn. Comp= Rashard Lewis but stronger. 

Jabari is an absolutely incredible shooter and a good, if overrated, defender. Jabari has the ability to guard 3-5 on switches and the ability to pull up off the dribble. The only problem is he cannot do anything else on offense. 

8 Overall – Keegan Murray

22: 6’8 215 Forward Iowa. Comp= Marcus Morris who isn’t a dirty player and plays real defense.

Keegan is going to be the most solid role player from this draft. He’s a fantastic defender with solid offensive potential. He just doesn’t make mistakes. 

15 Overall – Nikola Jovic

19: 6’10 Forward Mega Basket (Serbia). Comp= Tom Chambers with handles

Jovic is a giant shot creator and great passer. He can score from all 3 levels and has a flair for the dramatic. He struggles with defense but has tried to improve there as the year has progressed. 

17 Overall – Peyton Watson

19: 6’7 190 Wing UCLA. Comp= Jeff Green

Watson is a super athletic wing who struggles with decision making and shot selection. His struggles have lead to him losing playing time in a stacked Bruins squad, but he has earned some back. If he transfers he could be a lotto pick this year. If he doesn’t he’s the perfect pre draft candidate. 

19 Overall – Tari Eason

21: 6’8 215 Big LSU. Comp= James Johnson

Eason is a fantastic defender with a questionable offensive skill. Tari will wow you with his passing and defensive instincts. 

24 Overall – Patrick Baldwin Jr.

19: 6’10 205 Forward Milwaukee. Comp= Worse Shooting Davis Bertans

Baldwin’s shot looked beautiful when he played high school ball he shot 43% on 109 attempts, when playing against any sort of hard competition; FIBA, AAU, NCAA he’s dropped drastically to only 29% on 122 attempts. In theory Baldwin should be what Jovic is, but he’s not been that whenever he’s not beating up on inferior competition. At a certain point in the first round he’s worth the risk. 

27 Overall – Harrison Ingram

20: 6’8 230 Wing Stanford. Comp= Anthony Mason

I’m not really sure if Ingram is a 3 or a 4 so I just went with 4. He’s super strong and smart as a defender. He makes solid decisions with the ball. A unique player who could really make a team happy when/if he hits. 

28 Overall – Jeremy Sochan

19: 6’7 220 Forward Baylor (Poland) comp= taller Matisse Thybulle

Sochan might be the best defender in the draft if everything works out well. His offense is nothing to write home about but he is flying up draft boards. 

37 Overall – EJ Liddell

21: 6’7 240 Big Ohio St. Comp= Poor Man’s Tobias Harris. 

I have no idea if Liddell will translate, his size for a big man is not ideal but he really tries and is SUPER fun to watch. 

41 Overall – Trayce Jackson-Davis

22: 6’9 245 Forward Indiana. Comp= Terrence Jones 

Dale Davis was was a man-child, his son is also an absolute beast. Davis can probably find his way into the first round on the right team with his defense and hustle. 

49 Overall – Michael Foster

19: 6’9 220 Big Ignite. Comp= Julius Randle’s cousin 

Foster can do a little bit of everything on offense but struggles mightily on defense. He’s only been playing organized ball for a few years so maybe good coaching can fix that.

58 Overall – Alex Fudge

19: 6’7 175 Forward LSU. Comp= Dorian Finney Smith 

Fudge is a pre draft candidate who, if he stays, will almost certainly make the first round next year. He is a great defender and disruptor of opponents’ offenses. 

65 Overall – Roko Prkacin

19: 6’8 225 Forward KK Cibona (Croatia). Comp= Rudy Gay

Roko withdrew from the draft on deadline day last year, and it was a huge mistake. He has struggled mightily with injuries all season long and his stats have regressed a great deal. 

66 Overall – Leonardo Okeke

19: 6’9 215 Forward NOVIPIÙ JB MONFERRATO (Italy/Nigeria). Comp= Thad Young lite.

Okeke could find a spot on a team with his energy and smart play. At just 19 he has a very mature game. 

67 Overall – Tristan Vukcevic

19: 6’10 218 Big Partizan (Serbia/Greece/Sweden/Spain) Comp= Andrea Bargani 

Recently left Real Madrid on a multi year deal. This probably means he is a stash candidate or just will wait to declare for the draft. The young man is busting with potential. 

76 Overall – Marcus Bagley

21: 6’6 215 Forward Arizona St. Comp= Marcus Morris lite

While his brother Marvin has disappointed in the pros, Marcus has slowly watched his stock decline as he has struggled to improve on a decent freshman season. 

82 Overall – Pete Nance

22: 6’9 210 Big North Western. Comp= Lite version of his older brother.

Larry Nance makes athletic big men with all his children apparently, Pete could really find a spot as an energy big off the bench somewhere. 

91 Overall – Kenny Lofton Jr

20: 6’7 275 Forward Louisiana Tech. Comp= Slower Mo

Lofton is the most fun player to watch in the NCAA. The problems with his weight limit his ceiling but his mastery of angles is absolutely mesmerizing. 

98 Overall – Kevin Obanor

22: 6’8 225 Forward Texas Tech. Comp= Orlando Ryan Anderson 

The ORU transfer had said he wasn’t planning on going to the NBA, 3 days before he declared. He then transferred and is now trying. The waffling probably hurt his stock too much and he might not make it. 

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Jordan Ennis lives in West Africa where he is a pastor at an international church, he also co-hosts the Assisted Development Podcast on the HoopSocial Podcasts feed. He can be found at Assisted Development Podcast on Facebook and @HoopSocialDraft on Twitter.