Who's Better: Davis or Drummond?

Stacking up the talented second-year bigs prior to their first NBA meeting

Updated: January 24, 2014, 10:08 AM ET
By Bradford Doolittle | ESPN Insider

Anthony Davis/Andre DrummondNBAE/Getty ImagesThe Pelicans' Anthony Davis and the Pistons' Andre Drummond are two of the NBA's best young bigs.

If the proof of a measure is in its consistency, then it's safe to say that we have an excellent read on last year's draft class. The top three rookies in 2012-13 WARP were No. 1 pick Anthony Davis, the surprising Andre Drummond and the eventual Rookie of the Year Damian Lillard, who was honored as much for his massive total of minutes played as he was for his fine performance. Advance the calendar one season, and what does the "sophomore" leaderboard tell us? Same deal: Davis, Drummond and Lillard.

Because of various injuries and the limited number of opportunities presented by the interconference schedule, Davis and Drummond have yet to square off at the NBA level. That will change Friday when the Pelicans visit Detroit. So this a good time to ask: Which one of the league's emergent young big men is better?

If we were redrafting today, Davis would still be the top pick. But is there an argument to be made for Drummond?

The usual way you see these comparisons made is to list various statistical categories and add up the check marks for each category a player wins. This isn't the way I've ever compared players because performance in box-score categories is dependent on team context. My approach to player comparisons is to answer as objectively as possible five deceptively complex questions. 

Let's run through those five questions for Davis and Drummond.