Stat: LeBron James boasts a PER of 43.1 at PF, more than ten points higher than his league-leading and history-making overall mark of 33.01.
Take: Denying LeBron the title of the world’s best overall player has become even harder in 2012 than in years past, as he’s taken efficiency to a mark never before seen. Should James finish the regular season with his current PER, he’ll have outpaced the current high of 31.89 set by Michael Jordan in 1987-1988 by a whopping 1.12 points.
What the rest of the NBA should worry about is thats LeBron has accumulated that number while playing the majority of his minutes at his second best and supposedly “natural” position, small forward. Dating back to his days in Cleveland, James’ teams have thrived playing relative small-ball with the King at the 4. This season, with one of the NBA’s best low-post games and a new affinity for setting screens and doing the dirty work a la teammate Udonis Haslem, LeBron’s been otherworldly at power forward.
Look no farther than his majestic performance last night against the Blazers starting in place of Chris Bosh – this was the best individual show put on by any player this season. Having said that, similar surreal dominance at that position has become the norm for James of late. With Miami on an absolute tear, one wonders just how much better the Heat could be if Eric Spoelstra committed more floor time to those “small” lineups. The answer, presumably, is a lot, which is a scary, scary thought for other teams hoping to win a title come June.