A very weak small forward crop

Updated: June 17, 2004, 12:28 PM ET
By Chad Ford | ESPN Insider
The small forward position is the junk-drawer of the NBA. If you're taller than 6-foot-6 and scouts don't have a clue where you'll play, they throw you into the small forward drawer with all of the other odds and ends and call it good.

Swingman. Three. Point forward. Small forward. Does it matter? There is no single definition for the three-spot these days.

Some guys can shoot the rock. Others have the handle to run the offense from the point. Some are rangy defenders called upon to stop the team's top offensive player. Others are power forwards masquerading as threes, because teams are too embarrassed to admit they have a 6-7 four. Others are two guards in three clothing who have refused to leave the shooting to the shooting guard.

This year the top three small forwards in the draft all could be lottery picks, but after that there's a serious drop-off. The No. 4 player on the list, Viktor Khryapa, is not a lock for the first round. Everyone beyond him will be grateful with a second-round selection.

Chad Ford

Senior Writer, NBA Insider

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