When the 2018-19 NBA season begins in October, Al-Farouq Aminu is expected to fill the starting power forward position for the Portland Trail Blazers as usual. The serviceable forward averaged 9.3 points and 7.6 rebounds for Portland last season, playing his trademark defense. But is that enough?
Frank Urbina of HoopsHype ranked the Top 30 power forwards in the NBA this week, placing Aminu 23rd overall. The good news is that he made the list. The bad news: 23rd is fairly low among 30 teams with starting PF’s. That said, Aminu plays to his strengths and, according to Urbina, is an important cog in Portland’s lineup.
A great defender and a long athlete who provides toughness in the paint, Aminu is also a plus rebounder despite his slightly undersized frame for a 4-man. Thanks to all of those factors, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that with Aminu on the floor last season, Portland outscored opponents by 4.6 points per 100 possessions. He’s been an important piece for the Blazers since his arrival three years ago, and that won’t change in 2018-19.
Aminu is sandwiched between Markieff Morris of the Washington Wizards and his brother Marcus Morris of the Boston Celtics on Urbina’s list. Draymond Green of the Golden State Warriors tops the ledger.