The ESPN 5-on-5 roundtable continues its daily discussion with a debate of the NBA’s best centers. Which young five-man has the most promising career prospects?
Jordan Heimer, ClipperBlog:DeMarcus Cousins. Contrary to popular belief, it’s better to have a headcase with extraordinary talent than a blue-collar hustler without it. Cousins looked like a legitimate star for much of the second half, piling up 18 double-doubles from February onward, second only to Blake Griffin among rookies. Just wait until he learns how to stay on the court.
Spencer Wellesley Percy, Queen City Hoops: When talking about “most promising,” I look to the age category. Brook Lopez. He’s only 23 years old, and is the building block of New Jersey’s future. This guy has boosted his average point total per game every season, and is just a few free-agent signings away in N.J. from being a serious threat in the league.
Jonathan Santiago, Cowbell Kingdom: DeMarcus Cousins. He can score with his back to the basket when he chooses to, and he also has great passing ability and vision. Factor in his size (6-11, 270 pounds) and he has all the attributes you want in a big man. He needs to improve his decision-making and attitude. But if Zach Randolph can mature, there’s hope for Cousins, right?
John Converse Townsend, Truth About It: Marc Gasol. Gasol’s giant paw prints were all over the Grizzlies’ 2011 playoff run, where he averaged 15 points, 11.3 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per game. He is a physical presence entering the prime of his career and will continue to be a big contributor in Memphis.
Read the rest, which includes opinions on the league’s best center, most underrated center and greatest center ever, right here.