NBA The Best Small Forwards of All Time  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
82.7k votes 12.4k voters 170.3k views 152 items

List Rules 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.
list ordered by

1
2,817 2,838
Julius Erving is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Philadelphia 76ers, New York Nets

2
4,787 1,727
Larry Bird is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Boston Celtics

3
6,155 2,147
LeBron James is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Cleveland Cavaliers, Miami Heat, Los Angeles Lakers

4
1,778 1,426
Elgin Baylor is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Los Angeles Lakers

5
1,868 1,267
Dominique Wilkins is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Atlanta Hawks, Boston Celtics, Orlando Magic

6
3,205 1,558
Kevin Durant is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Golden State Warriors, Oklahoma City Thunder, Seattle Supersonics

7
2,923 1,331
Scottie Pippen is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Portland Trail Blazers, Houston Rockets, Chicago Bulls

8
1,486 892
James Worthy is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Los Angeles Lakers

9
1,228 763
John Havlicek is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Boston Celtics

10
1,763 928
Paul Pierce is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Los Angeles Clippers, Boston Celtics, Brooklyn Nets

11
878 573
Bernard King is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
wiabux added Utah Jazz, Washington Wizards, Brooklyn Nets

12
1,054 570
Rick Barry is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
New York Nets, Houston Rockets, Golden State Warriors

13
1,369 576
Tracy McGrady is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Houston Rockets, Orlando Magic, Toronto Raptors

14
1,247 636
Vince Carter is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
tbb911 added Sacramento Kings, Memphis Grizzlies, Phoenix Suns

15
1,116 263
Kawhi Leonard is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
little JP Tokoto added Toronto Raptors, San Antonio Spurs

16
636 452
Alex English is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
wiabux added Dallas Mavericks, Indiana Pacers, Milwaukee Bucks

17
629 183
Clyde Drexler is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
lauren-charbono added Portland Trail Blazers, Houston Rockets

18
1,286 985
Carmelo Anthony is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Oklahoma City Thunder, New York Knicks, Denver Nuggets

19
810 406
Chris Mullin is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Indiana Pacers, Golden State Warriors

20
814 452
Grant Hill is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Phoenix Suns, Orlando Magic, Detroit Pistons

21
405 349
Adrian Dantley is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
JohnWade added Dallas Mavericks, Indiana Pacers, Utah Jazz

22
843 458
Paul George is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
ZachCarlson added Oklahoma City Thunder, Indiana Pacers

23
314 232
David Thompson is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
mkeith.peel added Seattle Supersonics, Denver Nuggets

24
386 338
Glen Rice is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
wiabux added Houston Rockets, Charlotte Hornets, Los Angeles Lakers

25
423 323
Larry Johnson is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
wiabux added Charlotte Hornets, New York Knicks