The Best Small Forwards of All Time

31k votes 4.4k voters 104k views 106 items tags f p @

List Criteria: Only NBA players who played small forward for most of their career

Who are the best small forwards of all time? A small forward serves a critical role in any basketball game, whether NCAA or pro, but this list is primarily concerned with the top small forwards in the NBA. Fans of the game know how important the small forward is: he is often one of the main scorers on the team. The small forward is also versatile, able to fill many roles for a team. Which small forward deserves the title of the best ever? That's for you to decide, with your votes. You can also add any small forwards who are missing from this list, and rerank it any way you want.

When it comes to deciding the best small forwards in the NBA, well, arguments might ensue. Everyone has a favorite -- whether it's LeBron James and his incredible size, strength and versatility, Larry Bird and his extraordinary shooting abilities or a modern era shooter with amazing shooting ability like Kevin Durant. Arguments can be made that virtually any one of the players listed here could be the best ever; certainly they are all among the top NBA players of all time, too.

If you're up for more voting, check out these lists of the greatest power forwards and the greatest shooting guards in NBA history, too. These are the top 10 small forwards in the NBA.
Collection Photo: user uploaded image
  • 118 ReRanks
    • Women
    • Men
    • Age
    • Region
  • 2 See list ranked by
Z
G Options B Comments & Embed 2rerank list
  1. 1
    + 1,815
    - 651
    Larry Bird is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    the people's #1
    Larry Bird Boston Celtics

  2. 2
    + 1,964
    - 837
    LeBron James is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time


    LeBron James Cleveland Cavaliers

  3. 3
    + 1,253
    - 501
    Julius Erving is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time


    Julius Erving Philadelphia 76ers, New York Nets

  4. 4
    + 1,181
    - 645
    Scottie Pippen is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Scottie Pippen Portland Trail Blazers, Houston Rockets, Chicago Bulls

  5. 5
    + 1,064
    - 660
    Kevin Durant is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    most listed & ranked high on reranks
    Kevin Durant Seattle Supersonics

  6. 6
    + 825
    - 270
    Dominique Wilkins is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time


    Dominique Wilkins Atlanta Hawks, Boston Celtics, Orlando Magic

  7. 7
    + 769
    - 304
    Elgin Baylor is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time


    Elgin Baylor Los Angeles Lakers

  8. 8
    + 656
    - 271
    James Worthy is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time


    James Worthy Los Angeles Lakers

  9. 9
    + 676
    - 379


    Boston Celtics

    ;
  10. 10
    + 479
    - 215

    added by tbb911
    Brooklyn Nets, Toronto Raptors

    ;
  11. 11
    + 544
    - 262
    John Havlicek is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time


    John Havlicek Boston Celtics

  12. 12
    + 460
    - 247
    Rick Barry is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time


    Rick Barry New York Nets, Houston Rockets, Golden State Warriors

  13. 13
    + 415
    - 157
    Bernard King is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by wiabux
    Bernard King Utah Jazz, Washington Wizards, Brooklyn Nets

  14. 14
    + 570
    - 431
    Carmelo Anthony is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Carmelo Anthony Denver Nuggets

  15. 15
    + 517
    - 288


    Houston Rockets, Orlando Magic, Toronto Raptors

    ;
  16. 16
    + 402
    - 143
    Chris Mullin is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    ranked low on reranks
    Chris Mullin Indiana Pacers, Golden State Warriors

  17. 17
    + 393
    - 199


    Phoenix Suns, Orlando Magic, Detroit Pistons

    ;
  18. 18
    + 322
    - 158
    Paul George is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by ZachCarlson
    Paul George

  19. 19
    + 297
    - 179
    Alex English is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by wiabux
    Alex English Dallas Mavericks, Indiana Pacers, Milwaukee Bucks

  20. 20
    + 257
    - 367
    Andre Iguodala is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Andre Iguodala Philadelphia 76ers

  21. 21
    + 177
    - 137
    Adrian Dantley is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by JohnWade
    Adrian Dantley Dallas Mavericks, Indiana Pacers, Utah Jazz

  22. 22
    + 218
    - 149
    Glen Rice is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by wiabux
    Glen Rice Houston Rockets, Charlotte Hornets, Los Angeles Lakers

  23. 23
    + 97
    - 13
    Clyde Drexler is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by lauren-charbono
    Clyde Drexler Portland Trail Blazers, Houston Rockets

  24. 24
    + 223
    - 142
    Larry Johnson is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by wiabux
    Larry Johnson Charlotte Hornets, New York Knicks

  25. 25
    + 176
    - 136
    Robert Horry is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time


    Robert Horry Phoenix Suns, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Lakers

  26. 26
    + 75
    - 13
    Kawhi Leonard is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by little JP Tokoto
    Kawhi Leonard

  27. 27
    + 151
    - 170
    Jamaal Wilkes is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time


    Jamaal Wilkes Los Angeles Lakers, Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Clippers

  28. 28
    + 187
    - 96
    Moses Malone is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by ChristopherKeel
    Moses Malone Washington Wizards, Atlanta Hawks, Philadelphia 76ers

  29. 29
    + 151
    - 192


    Phoenix Suns, Miami Heat

    ;
  30. 30
    + 148
    - 360
    Metta World Peace is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Metta World Peace Indiana Pacers, Sacramento Kings, Chicago Bulls

  31. 31
    + 101
    - 89
    Mark Aguirre is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by NaroSlp
    Mark Aguirre Dallas Mavericks, Los Angeles Clippers, Detroit Pistons

  32. 32
    + 57
    - 24
    Dennis Rodman is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by tom-charbono
    Dennis Rodman Dallas Mavericks, Los Angeles Lakers, Detroit Pistons

  33. 33
    + 134
    - 136
    Glenn Robinson is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by wiabux
    Glenn Robinson Atlanta Hawks, Philadelphia 76ers, Milwaukee Bucks

  34. 34
    + 173
    - 357
    Rudy Gay is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Rudy Gay Memphis Grizzlies

  35. 35
    + 105
    - 77
    David Thompson is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by mkeith.peel
    David Thompson Seattle Supersonics, Denver Nuggets

  36. 36
    + 64
    - 36

    added by nir-einess
    Indiana Pacers, Sacramento Kings, New Orleans Pelicans

    ;
  37. 37
    + 127
    - 304
    Luol Deng is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Luol Deng Chicago Bulls

  38. 38
    + 65
    - 36
    Kyle Korver is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by devenharris24
    Kyle Korver Utah Jazz, Philadelphia 76ers

  39. 39
    + 82
    - 108
    Bobby Dandridge is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by JohnWade
    Bobby Dandridge Washington Wizards, Milwaukee Bucks

  40. 40
    + 31
    - 47
    Lamar Odom is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time


    Lamar Odom Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat, Los Angeles Clippers

  41. 41
    + 31
    - 35
    Billy Cunningham is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time


    Billy Cunningham Philadelphia 76ers

  42. 42
    + 60
    - 74
    Sean Elliott is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by NaroSlp
    Sean Elliott Detroit Pistons

  43. 43
    + 115
    - 156
    Latrell Sprewell is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by wiabux
    Latrell Sprewell Minnesota Timberwolves, Golden State Warriors, New York Knicks

  44. 44
    + 40
    - 48
    Rashard Lewis is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by slaft
    Rashard Lewis Orlando Magic, Seattle Supersonics

  45. 45
    + 88
    - 134
    Jamal Mashburn is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time

    added by wiabux
    Jamal Mashburn Dallas Mavericks, Charlotte Hornets, New Orleans Pelicans

  46. 46
    + 116
    - 318

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Indiana Pacers

    ;
  47. 47
    + 97
    - 214

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Dallas Mavericks, Washington Wizards, Golden State Warriors

    ;
  48. 48
    + 39
    - 28

    ranked low on reranks & added by slaft
    Phoenix Suns, Cleveland Cavaliers, Miami Heat

    ;
  49. 49
    + 29
    - 16

    ranked low on reranks & added by slaft
    Dallas Mavericks, Indiana Pacers, Portland Trail Blazers

    ;
  50. 50
    + 19
    - 30
    Caron Butler is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time


    Caron Butler Washington Wizards, Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat

107 +

Something missing? Add it!

L List Options 2 Rerank List B Comments & Embed z Share Next List >