In addition to being the third-best player in the Eastern Conference, Andre Drummond is also the best big man in the East. He’s also the NBA’s best rebounder, and one of the better interior defenders around as well.
Drummond averaged 16.2 points and an NBA-best 14.8 rebounds per game in his best season ever as a pro. Drummond shot 52.1 percent from the field, which is a little low for a center but still a fine mark.
He also added 1.5 steals and 1.4 blocks per game to the Pistons, who have gone from awful to exciting as Drummond has grown into the player he is now. He’ll keep growing, too–he’s only 22 years old.
Centers always have a massive impact on basketball, even in today’s era of pace and space. Stan Van Gundy’s strategy of surrounding Drummond with four shooters leaves the middle open for him to dominate whoever opposes him–nobody can out-rebound Drummond on a given night.
He’s got some work to do on improving his offensive game, but it looks like Drummond will get there eventually. His free throw shooting still sucks, but that’s not enough of an issue to bump Andre Drummond any lower than third in the East.
Next: Number Two