Ranking: The Top 25 power forwards for the 2022-23 season

Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

The season-long layoff may have caused many to forget the type of talent the New Orleans Pelicans have in Zion Williamson, who looked like a transcendent talent the last time he took the court for the team.

In 2020-21, the former Duke Blue Devil was otherworldly, averaging 27.0 points, 7.2 rebounds and 3.7 assists while shooting 61.1 percent from the floor. Putting up 25.7 points in his first two seasons, both of which came prior to his turning 21, Williamson actually holds the distinction of being the first player ever to average at least 25.0 points before turning 21.

And to do that with the level of efficiency Williamson did make the feat even more special, as the big man is shooting over 60.0 percent from the floor for his career.

Naturally, the advanced analytics raved about Williamson’s impact in 2020-21, with BPM ranking him the 11th-most-impactful player of the year, WS/48 13th and PER fourth overall.

Williamson is like a modern-day Shaquille O’Neal, completely overmatching opponents in the paint, leaving them hopeless of slowing him down once he gets the ball close to the basket. But he also possesses the level of skill required for modern stars, with an above-average ball handle for a man of his size and underrated passing instincts.

His outside shot still needs work but even so, Williamson is completely dominant every time he sets foot on the hardwood thanks to his driving and finishing ability.

Granted, we are still taking a risk by ranking him this highly considering we haven’t seen him play in an official NBA game since May of 2021, and he is coming off of a serious foot injury. But we’re working under the belief he’ll be fully healthy to kick off 2022-23 – he looks pretty healthy here, for example…

Would you turn on your teammate if they acted the way Zion Williamson is right now?

Zion might not be 100% but is clearly healthy enough to play.#NBAPlayoffs #NOLA

— Thomas Christian from The GOATED Podcast (@ThomasGoatnba) April 16, 2022

…and if that is the case, Williamson will be one of the league’s top players overall, not just power forwards.

For the latest Zion Williamson rumors and salary info, click here.

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