NBA The Best Small Forwards of All Time  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
73.9k votes 11.1k voters 159.2k views 121 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
2,579 2,438
Julius Erving is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Philadelphia 76ers, New York Nets

2
5,481 1,958
LeBron James is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Cleveland Cavaliers, Miami Heat, Los Angeles Lakers

3
4,265 1,609
Larry Bird is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Boston Celtics

4
1,594 1,254
Elgin Baylor is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Los Angeles Lakers

5
1,717 1,107
Dominique Wilkins is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Atlanta Hawks, Boston Celtics, Orlando Magic

6
2,832 1,444
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
2,617 1,253
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
1,345 801
James Worthy is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Los Angeles Lakers

9
1,127 683
John Havlicek is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Boston Celtics

10
1,603 842
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
798 488
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
941 507
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
1,206 534
Tracy McGrady is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Houston Rockets, Orlando Magic, Toronto Raptors

14
1,101 598
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
580 390
Alex English is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
wiabux added Dallas Mavericks, Indiana Pacers, Milwaukee Bucks

16
924 214
Kawhi Leonard is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
little JP Tokoto added Toronto Raptors, San Antonio Spurs

17
1,177 873
Carmelo Anthony is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Oklahoma City Thunder, New York Knicks, Denver Nuggets

18
749 358
Chris Mullin is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Indiana Pacers, Golden State Warriors

19
527 156
Clyde Drexler is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
lauren-charbono added Portland Trail Blazers, Houston Rockets

20
732 410
Grant Hill is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Phoenix Suns, Orlando Magic, Detroit Pistons

21
369 306
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
743 418
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
273 195
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
385 284
Larry Johnson is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
wiabux added Charlotte Hornets, New York Knicks

25
349 297
Glen Rice is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
wiabux added Houston Rockets, Charlotte Hornets, Los Angeles Lakers

26
237 134
Peja Stojaković is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
nir-einess added Indiana Pacers, Sacramento Kings, New Orleans Pelicans

27
461 640
Andre Iguodala is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Golden State Warriors, Philadelphia 76ers, Denver Nuggets

28
282 171
Dennis Rodman is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
tom-charbono added Dallas Mavericks, Los Angeles Lakers, Detroit Pistons

29
392 229
Moses Malone is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
ChristopherKeel added Washington Wizards, Atlanta Hawks, Philadelphia 76ers

30
308 270
Robert Horry is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Phoenix Suns, Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Lakers

31
197 192
Mark Aguirre is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
NaroSlp added Dallas Mavericks, Los Angeles Clippers, Detroit Pistons

32
151 221
Bob Dandridge is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
JohnWade added Washington Wizards, Milwaukee Bucks

33
236 276
Jamaal Wilkes is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Los Angeles Lakers, Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Clippers

34
239 71
Charles Barkley is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Phoenix Suns, Philadelphia 76ers, Houston Rockets

35
101 131
Billy Cunningham is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Philadelphia 76ers

36
278 338
Shawn Marion is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Dallas Mavericks, Phoenix Suns, Miami Heat

37
231 94
Michael Jordan is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Washington Wizards, Chicago Bulls

38
216 216
Glenn Robinson is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
wiabux added Atlanta Hawks, Philadelphia 76ers, Milwaukee Bucks

39
123 81
Detlef Schrempf is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
slaft added Dallas Mavericks, Indiana Pacers, Portland Trail Blazers

40
101 134
Bob Love is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
mkeith.peel added New York Nets, Cincinnati Royals, Seattle Supersonics

41
253 501
Metta World Peace is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Los Angeles Lakers, Indiana Pacers, Sacramento Kings

42
127 191
Kiki Vandeweghe is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
JohnWade added Portland Trail Blazers, Denver Nuggets, Los Angeles Clippers

43
124 151
Sean Elliott is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
NaroSlp added Detroit Pistons

44
171 80
Gordon Hayward is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
StacyWolfe added Utah Jazz, Boston Celtics

45
66 34
Sam Jones is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
Boston Celtics

46
191 224
Latrell Sprewell is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
wiabux added Minnesota Timberwolves, Golden State Warriors, New York Knicks

47
47 99
Marques Johnson is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
slaft added Golden State Warriors, Milwaukee Bucks, Los Angeles Clippers

48
258 479
Rudy Gay is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
San Antonio Spurs, Sacramento Kings, Memphis Grizzlies

49
52 109
Rudy Tomjanovich is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
MikeTrujillo added Houston Rockets, San Diego Rockets

50
146 206
Jamal Mashburn is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Small Forwards of All Time
wiabux added Dallas Mavericks, Charlotte Hornets, New Orleans Pelicans