Who Is the Best NBA Center Right Now?

It’s a hot debate – who is the best NBA center right now? We break down the stats and give our opinion on the matter.

Who Is the Best NBA Center Right Now?


The National Basketball Association (NBA) is a professional basketball league in North America. The NBA is widely considered to be the premier men’s professional basketball league in the world, and one of the major professional sports leagues of North America. It has 30 teams (29 in the United States and 1 in Canada), and is an active member of USA Basketball (USAB).

Centers are usually the tallest players on the court, responsible for protecting the basket and rebounding misses. They also score occasionally, but their main job is to defense and rebound. The best centers in the NBA right now are:

1. DeAndre Jordan – Los Angeles Clippers
2. Andre Drummond – Detroit Pistons
3. Rudy Gobert – Utah Jazz
4. Karl-Anthony Towns – Minnesota Timberwolves
5. Steven Adams – Oklahoma City Thunder

The Case for Joel Embiid

In recent years, the center position in the NBA has been redefined. No longer are we looking for tall, slow-footed players who can only score in the post. Instead, centers are now expected to be versatile two-way players who can score inside and out, as well as provide rim protection on defense. With that in mind, there is no better center in the NBA right now than Joel Embiid of the Philadelphia 76ers.

Standing at 7’0” and weighing 284 pounds, Embiid has the size to bang with the best of them in the post. But he also has the speed and agility to switch out on defenders on the perimeter and stay with them. On offense, he is a load to handle in the post, but he can also step out and hit threes (he shot 34.8 percent from three-point range this past season). He is also an excellent free throw shooter for a big man (he shot 80 percent from the charity stripe this past season), which makes him an even tougher matchup for opposing teams.

And then there’s his defense. Embiid is a legitimate rim protector, averaging 2.5 blocks per game this past season. He is also quick enough to defend pick-and-rolls and recover when opponents try to beat him off the dribble. Simply put, he is a nightmare matchup for opposing offenses.

In short, Joel Embiid is everything you could want in an NBA center right now: A big man who can score inside and out; a rim protector on defense; and someone who can switch out and defend smaller players on the perimeter. He is the complete package, and that’s why he is the best center in the NBA right now.

The Case for Nikola Jokic

Nikola Jokic is one of the best players in the NBA. He’s a two-time All-Star and was named first-team All-NBA last season. He’s also one of the best centers in the league.

The 24-year-old Serbian star is averaging 20.2 points, 10.2 rebounds and 6.9 assists per game this season. He’s shooting 49.6 percent from the field and 32.4 percent from three-point range.

Jokic is one of the most versatile players in the NBA. He can score inside and out, rebound and pass with the best of them. He’s also an excellent defender.

There are other great centers in the NBA, but Jokic is the best right now.

The Case for Rudy Gobert

Rudy Gobert is widely regarded as the best center in the NBA right now. The 7-foot-1 Frenchman has established himself as a dominant force on both ends of the court, and he’s only getting better with each passing season.

Gobert is a two-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year, and he’s also been named to the All-NBA First Team on two occasions. He’s a fierce rim protector who alters countless shots on a nightly basis, and he’s also an excellent rebounder and finisher around the basket.

On offense, Gobert is one of the league’s most efficient players. He doesn’t need many touches to make an impact, as he’s content to set screens and roll to the basket for easy lobs. He also has a knack for getting his teammates open looks with his expert passing.

There’s no doubt that Rudy Gobert is the best center in the NBA right now. He has few weaknesses and is only getting better with each passing season. It wouldn’t be surprising to see him win multiple Defensive Player of the Year awards before all is said and done.

The Case for Anthony Davis

With apologies to Nikola Jokic, Joel Embiid and Rudy Gobert, the best NBA center right now is Anthony Davis. And it’s not particularly close.

Davis has been the best player on the Los Angeles Lakers this season, and he’s been one of the best players in the entire league. He’s averaging 26.7 points, 9.3 rebounds, 3.1 assists, 2.3 blocks and 1.5 steals per game while shooting 50.8 percent from the field and 34.8 percent from three-point range. His Player Efficiency Rating of 27.98 is the best in the NBA, and his offensive rating of 121 is better than every player in the league except for Jokic and Embiid.

On top of all that, Davis is also an excellent defender. He has a defensive rating of 102, which is better than every player in the league except for Gobert and Embiid. He’s fifth in the league in defensive win shares, and he’s third in blocks per game. He’s also fourth in total rebounds per game, which is an impressive feat for a player who spends so much time on the perimeter offensively.

In short, Davis is an elite offensive player who is also an elite defender. He’s capable of doing everything on both ends of the court, and he’s doing it at an MVP level this season. There isn’t a center in the league who can match his all-around production, and that makes him the clear-cut best at his position right now

The Case for Karl-Anthony Towns

Towns is the only center in the league averaging 20 points, 10 rebounds, and one three-pointer made per game. He’s also the only center shooting better than 50% from the field and 80% from the foul line. Among centers who have played in at least 40 games, Towns ranks third in win shares per 48 minutes (.218), behind only Rudy Gobert and DeAndre Jordan.


After examining the statistics, it is clear that Joel Embiid is the best center in the NBA right now. He is an elite scorer and rebounder, and he has shown that he can anchor a defense. He also has the potential to get even better, which is scary for the rest of the league.

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