Is DeAndre Jordan the new Ben Wallace?

Watching DeAndre Jordan these past few years, I can’t stop comparing him to Ben Wallace in his prime. High volume rebounder, decent scorer, tenacious defender, low jersey number on a red, white, and blue jersey; all the important stuff. I decided to dive into some high level stats – in the primes of their careers – to see how accurate this comparison was.

DeAndre Jordan (2013-2016) vs. Ben Wallace (2000-2005)

ben-wallace-2004

When you think of these guys, the stats that always come to mind are rebounds and blocked shots. This is where their impact on the game stands out the most. They come in very close on these metrics, each a tad higher in one than the other:

DJ – 14.2 rebounds/game, 2.3 blocks/game
BW – 13.2 rebounds/game, 2.9 blocks/game

So, there you go, verifies my hypothesis that DeAndre is the new Ben, right? Wrong. Let’s take a look at offense. Yes, both suck at free throws, usually coming in well under 50% from the line, but that’s where their offensive similarities stop.

DJ – 11.3 points/game, 3.0 dunks/game, FG percentage above 65%
BW – 8.0 points/game, 1.3 blocks/game, FG percentage under 50%

DeAndre blows him out of the water here. So maybe they are not so similar after all. So then who the heck does he compare to? Here are a couple more options.

DeAndre Jordan (2013-2016) vs. Dikembe Mutombo (1991-2001 – dude was in his prime forever)

DJ – 14.2 rebounds/game, 2.3 blocks/game, 11.3 points/game, 3.0 dunks/game, FG percentage above 65%
DM – 12.4 rebounds/game, 3.5 blocks/game, 12.4 points/game, 0.9 dunks/game, FG percentage just above 50% (great free throw shooter though – 65-70%)

So have we found our guy?

dikembe-gif

The stats here are very close as well, but the dunks and field goal percentages are troubling; they just aren’t the same type of player on the offensive side of the ball. The eyeball test shows that along with the numbers.

DeAndre Jordan (2013-2016) vs. Dwight Howard (2012-2016 – the post-Orlando era)

DJ – 14.2 rebounds/game, 2.3 blocks/game, 11.3 points/game, 3.0 dunks/game, FG percentage above 65%
DH – 11.9 rebounds/game, 1.9 blocks/game, 16.7 points/game, 2.6 dunks/game, FG percentage around 60% (also a horrendous free throw shooter)

Looks like we found our guy. DeAndre Jordan in the middle of his prime is an injured, washed up, unwanted Dwight Howard (damn, Dwight’s had an awesome career). But if he has five or six more years like he’s had the past few, with a Finals run in there somewhere, he just may end up a Hall of Famer like Dikembe is and Ben and Dwight will be.

howard

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