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Least Valuable Player on Each NBA Team

John FrielAnalyst IApril 15, 2012

Least Valuable Player on Each NBA Team

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    Not every NBA player can achieve their childhood dreams of winning an NBA championship and possibly a few MVPs throughout their journey.

    Making it to the NBA is enough of a fulfilled dream. Considering that there are only 15 players on 30 teams, the big-leagues of basketball is one of the more difficult places for athletes to break in. About 450 players are signed to an NBA roster and each team has around eight players who obtain significant minutes.

    That narrows it down to about 240 players who are making some sort of an impact in the NBA. While that might seem like a lot, the number is minuscule when you think about how far basketball reaches around the world. It's every basketball player's dream to be in the NBA. Since basketball also happens to be one of the most accessible and popular recreational sports, there's plenty of competition to go around.

    We often take the time out of our day to praise the players who barely have any impact. Some players are on the team for veteran support, others as a safety blanket, and there are some whom we can't even explain how they made it onto an NBA team. All 30 of these men are amazing basketball players. You have to be amazing at the sport if you can make it to the big leagues, so don't be offended if there's a little bit of ridiculing and poking fun.

    It's all in good spirits. We're all about love here.

    Let's take a look at each team's least valuable player. By least valuable player, we don't just mean the worst player on the team. The least valuable player could very well be a prominent player. It basically comes down to overall impact, expectations and just how little of a contribution they give to their team.

Atlanta Hawks: Vladimir Radmanovic

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    If there were a competition for worst defender in the NBA, Vladimir Radmanovic would easily be the winner of that pageant.

    Outside of the likes of Mike Dunleavy, Jr. and Matt Bonner, Radmanovic could arguably be the worst defender in the NBA. He's incredibly slow, not strong enough to assert himself in the post and can't keep up with players his own size at 6'10". His defense is embarrassing and he can thank his three-point shooting alone for allowing him to be in the league since 2001.

    Radmanovic's calling-card has been his ability to be a perimeter threat. He's shooting 38 percent from beyond-the-arc for his career and has shot over 40 percent five times. This year, he's shooting a modest 37 percent from deep, but is cancelling it out with a dismal 36 percent shooting from the field. He's averaging five points and three boards per in his first season with the Atlanta Hawks.

    Even if his three-point shot is hitting, you wouldn't even be able to tell because you'd become too frustrated with how awful of a defender he is. When you're going shot-for-shot, eventually someone has to miss, and that someone usually ends up being Vladimir.

    Vladimir has played with four different teams since 2008. I could hardly wonder why.

Boston Celtics: Jermaine O'Neal

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    It's been a sad fall for former-MVP candidate Jermaine O'Neal.

    He hasn't played since February 27th due to a wrist injury, and it may be one of the last times we end up seeing O'Neal playing a relevant role on an NBA team.

    Even though he's only 33-years-old, O'Neal doesn't seem close to the player who once finished third in MVP voting and actually led the league in blocks. He's extremely lethargic and has a lot of trouble keeping up with speedy opposing players. He's also losing his vertical leap, which happens to be a staple of a player that makes a living on blocking shots.

    For the first time since 2000, O'Neal is averaging less than a block per. In 25 games with the Celtics this season, he's averaging five points on 43 percent shooting to go along with fewer than six rebounds per. He was grabbing nearly two offensive rebounds per, but it hardly takes away from the fact that he is a shell of the player he once was.

    Back in the day, dunking on Jermaine O'Neal meant that you had made it as a possible elite player.

    Nowadays, it's just sad.

Charlotte Bobcats: Everybody Except Kemba and Bismack

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    This entire franchise should be ashamed of themselves for the display of professional basketball they have given to the city of Charlotte.

    The Bobcats this year have been an absolute disgrace. Nobody had them making the playoffs or created any sort of lofty expectations for them at the beginning of the season, but you still thought that they could at least be somewhat relevant with guys like Corey Maggette and rookie Kemba Walker leading the way.

    That didn't happen. The Bobcats are 7-51 and just lost to the Miami Heat by 23 points to stretch their losing streak to 15 games. They need only one win in their final ten games of the season to make sure that they don't end up with the worst record in NBA history, passing the 9-73 mark set by the 1973 Philadelphia 76ers.

    Here's the rundown of teams they'll face: vs. Boston, vs. New Orleans, vs. Chicago, vs. Memphis, vs. Sacramento, at Washington, at Orlando and vs. New York.

    Immediately throw away the games against Boston, Chicago and Memphis because they don't stand a chance. I'm not going to discount the games against Orlando and New York, though, because those are two of the six teams they've beaten this season. They'll also have the benefit of possibly playing the Magic without Dwight Howard.

    It seems plausible to think that they could steal a win against New Orleans, a team they already beat, and/or Sacramento or Washington.

    I want to look at the future of this franchise, because the past is dark. Kemba Walker is an excellent offensive talent that can score from anywhere and Bismack Biyombo is a passionate and emotional player that can play some tough defense.

    Everyone else? Expendable, and that includes Michael Jordan, who put together this mess of a team.

Chicago Bulls: Brian Scalabrine

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    We all love Brian Scalabrine. We have no idea why, but we love the guy. He can barely shoot, can't play defense and has less athleticism than a newborn, yet Scalabrine is one of the most beloved players in the league.

    Speaking of which, why do we love Scalabrine? Is it the towel waving? The fact that he looks nothing like what you'd expect an NBA player to look like? Your guess is as good as mine. All I know, is that NBA fans find this guy irresistible and go absolutely insane when he actually steps out onto the court.

    We can save the joking for later and allow ourselves to come back down to reality. Take your hands off the meth for one minute and realize that Scalabrine is arguably the worst player in the NBA today. We have no idea what purpose he serves, and it's questionable as to why NBA teams would employ Scalabrine rather than an actual athlete in the D-League.

    For the past three years, Scalabrine is averaging less than two points per game. He has scored 50 combined points in his past two seasons with the Bulls, is 1-for-12 from beyond the arc in those two years and nearly recorded more personal fouls (18) than points (20) last year.

    I've never had the pleasure of having this Scalabrine character on my team. Is this pretty much the equivalent of Jack Haley of the 1995-'96 Chicago Bulls?

Cleveland Cavaliers: Luke Walton/Harangody

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    I couldn't just choose one Luke as the least valuable player for the Cleveland Cavaliers, so I decided to pick both.

    Is there anyone that's going to offer a significant argument as to whether Luke Walton or Luke Harangody has been worse this season? It might be time to reevaluate your life if we're going to be stuck in an argument over two guys you didn't even know were still in the league.

    We'll start off with Harangody since it seems that fewer fans know about him. He's a product of Notre Dame who once averaged as much as 23 points and 12 boards per-game in his time at the NCAA level. Even though he averaged better than 21 points per-game in his final three years with the Fighting Irish, Harangody wasn't selected until the Boston Celtics picked him up with the 52nd pick in the draft.

    He spent half a season there before being traded to the Cavaliers. He actually received some playing time, averaging 20 minutes per game, but hardly impressed with six points per-game on 38 percent shooting to go along with 25 percent shooting from deep and four boards per.

    Harangody has only played in 15 games this season and is averaging two points and two boards per. He's shooting 27 percent from the field and 14 percent from deep. The next time we'll hear of him is how he lit up some team in Russia whose name we can't pronounce.

    As for Luke Walton? You already know his story: He's Bill Walton's son and isn't that good. That's about it.

Dallas Mavericks: Lamar Odom

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    As good a player as Lamar Odom has been in his career, this stint with the Dallas Mavericks is sure to scare off potential suitors for next year.

    Odom was visibly unhappy playing with the Mavericks. He played with little urgency, heart or desire to be in a Mavericks uniform. You could tell that he missed the Los Angeles Lakers. You don't even have to look at his stats to know. Just watch any game he's played with Dallas this year and you'll see one of the saddest millionaires in the world.

    In the 2010-'11 season while he was still with the Lakers, Odom won his first ever Sixth Man of the Year award after coming off the bench for four consecutive seasons. He averaged 14 points on a career high 53 percent from the field, converted on 38 percent of his three-pointers, grabbed nine boards per and dished out three assists per.

    Then it all came to a crashing halt. After finding out that he was a part of a trade that would have sent him to New Orleans in order for the Los Angeles Lakers to receive Chris Paul, Odom broke down after the trade was vetoed by the NBA. L.O. demanded a trade and got his wish by being sent to Dallas. All the Lakers got in return was a future first-round pick.

    Odom's tenure with the Mavericks was pitiful. He averaged less than seven points per on 35 percent shooting, converted 25 percent of his three-pointers, grabbed four boards and dished out two assists per. He wasn't getting nearly the same amount of minutes he was with the Lakers on account of his horrific play.

    It got so bad that the Mavericks were near to sending Odom to the D-League. It ended with the two cutting ties for the sake of humanity.

Denver Nuggets: Chris Andersen

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    Remember when games featuring the Denver Nuggets meant getting excited to see Chris "Birdman" Andersen send back a few shots?

    It was only a few years ago when Andersen was one of the league's greatest success stories. He returned to the NBA after a year's absence due to a violation of the league's drug program and came back with a vengeance.

    He played in only five games with the New Orleans Hornets in his return before signing with the Nuggets in the 2008 offseason. Andersen had always been recognized as a solid shot-blocker early in his career, but we had no idea where he was coming from when he recorded nearly three blocks per game in his first full season since returning to the NBA.

    Andersen would finish second in the league in blocks per.

    The next year, Andersen would average a solid two blocks per. He wasn't as prolific a shot-blocker as he was the year before, but he was still making an impact and was still considered a fan favorite as well. Nuggets fans loved him, as did NBA fans in general. The tattoos, the gelled mohawk and the personality kept us around and waiting to see Andersen come off the bench.

    These past two years, however, he's disappeared from the media's spectrum. His play has deteriorated and he's only averaging a little more than a blocked shot per. He's played in only 32 games this season and is averaging five points and four boards per in only 15 minutes per contest.

    Plus, that goatee is reminiscent of Lars Ulrich and that's never a good thing.

Detroit Pistons: Ben Wallace

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    Staying on the top of players we used to recognize as prolific shot-blockers, not many of you probably knew that Ben Wallace was still in the NBA.

    He's not just in the NBA, either. He's still on the same team that he won an NBA championship and four Defensive Player of the Year awards with—the Detroit Pistons. Wallace returned to Detroit in 2009 after a failed stint with the Cleveland Cavaliers. That stint with the Cavaliers came after a short tenure with the Chicago Bulls.

    There must have been a gas leak at the United Center because someone signed Wallace to a contract that awarded him $16 million in his first year with the team. Wallace spent a season-and-a-half with the Bulls before being traded to the Cavaliers because he was going to be that player to help LeBron James to a championship.

    Could the Ben Wallace that won four consecutive DPOYs do that? Possibly. But this was in 2007 and Wallace was already 33 years old at the time. It shouldn't have come as a surprise to anybody that his stats began to decrease and he wasn't near as good a shot blocker as he was early on in his career.

    Fast forward to the 2011-'12 season and you find the Pistons with a player that hardly makes you remember that he was the defensive anchor on one of the stingiest defenses in NBA history. In 58 games this season, Wallace is averaging one point per-game on 41 percent shooting. He's grabbing four boards and averaging less than a block per for the first time since his rookie season in 1996.

    Someone else on the Pistons will have to take the title of least-valuable player next year with word that Wallace will be retiring at the end of the season.

Golden State Warriors: Mickell Gladness

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    This isn't really fair to Mickell Gladness, but he pretty much wins this by default since the Golden State Warriors use about every single player on their bench.

    Gladness seems to be the only player on the Warriors that doesn't receive playing time.

    The story of Mickell Gladness is a short one. He's a 25-year-old rookie from Alabama A&M who went undrafted. He's a center standing at 6'11", weighing in at 220 pounds and has a great deal of athleticism for a player his size.

    He played eight games with the the Miami Heat this season and converted only two points on three shots in eight games. He had more turnovers (three) than points and field goals combined with the Heat. He would mostly be subjected to signing 10-day contracts with the team, before the Heat eventually gave up and allowed him to walk.

    Gladness is now a part of the Warriors and is receiving significantly more playing time than he was with the Heat. That's not saying much now. Mickell has played in 10 games and is averaging only seven minutes per-game.

    He's now averaging two points on 37 percent shooting, two boards and a block per.

Houston Rockets: Marcus Morris

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    It could be worse for Marcus Morris. He could be Taylor Griffin, brother of Blake Griffin, or even Robin Lopez, who is the brother of standout New Jersey Nets center Brook Lopez.

    Instead, Marcus is the brother of Markieff, who is having a solid rookie season with the Phoenix Suns. While Markieff is getting plenty of minutes, exhibiting his skill-set and having a blast playing alongside Steve Nash, Marcus is having trouble getting off the bench for the Houston Rockets and has yet to receive any sort of significant playing time this season.

    The most amount of minutes Marcus has received was a 16-minute outing against the Los Angeles Clippers, where he posted four points and one rebound. With the little playing time you receive, it's those small openings that you have to embrace and take advantage of. Sadly, Marcus didn't and is still barely getting playing time.

    In 13 games, Morris is averaging two points on 24 percent shooting, has shot 1-of-9 from deep and has an equal amount of rebounds as he does turnovers with eight apiece.

    With the possibility of making the postseason looming, our last glimpses of Morris might have been the minute-and-four-second stint he played against the Sacramento Kings on April 8th.

Indiana Pacers: Kyrylo Fesenko

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    Big, lumbering and lethargic seem like the best characteristics to describe Kyrylo Fesenko with.

    Dirty would be a good overall description as well. His shot on LeBron James we assumed could have been unintentional, but throwing a ball at Kobe Bryant and then pulling on Dwyane Wade's jersey while he's in mid-air? That's disgusting and disrespectful.

    Karma has paid off. Fesenko barely received any minutes with the Utah Jazz and is now buried in the Indiana Pacers' rotation. The 7'1", 288-pound ogre from Ukraine has played in only one game this year and actually spent most of it without a team. It wasn't until March 23rd when the Indiana Pacers signed him that he would play in the NBA again.

    He has yet to play much with the Pacers. He had a seven-minute stint where he recorded two points and three boards.

    Prior to joining the Pacers, Fesenko played with the Jazz for five seasons. He'd average as much as three points and three boards per-game during the uneventful time he spent in Utah.

    As desperate as most teams are for a center, think about how bad of a player you have to be if you're not being signed even though you're nearly the size of Shaq.

Los Angeles Clippers: Bobby Simmons

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    I know I can't be the only one to think these exact thoughts when they heard Bobby Simmons joined the Los Angeles Clippers mid-way through the 2011-'12 this season.

    "Bobby Simmons? You mean that Bobby Simmons?"

    Yes, Bobby Simmons. The same Bobby Simmons who has played for six teams since 2001 and only 25 games since 2009. He had played with the New Jersey Nets and San Antonio Spurs the past two years and hardly received any sort of playing time with either squad. It turns out that averaging five points on 36 percent shooting isn't New Jersey Nets basketball.

    Simmons played in two games with the Spurs the next year. Those would be the only two games he'd play in the 2010-'11 season.

    He's now back in the NBA and with a team that actually plays him from time to time. Since signing with the Clippers in late February, he's played in 24 games, which is the most amount of games he's played in a single season since the 2008-'09 campaign.

    We now see why as he's averaging only three points per on 33 percent shooting from the field.

Los Angeles Lakers: Josh McRoberts

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    I simply don't get the appeal of having a player on your team that does nothing but play dirty.

    In a politically correct view, they're called "enforcers." In real life, they're called dirty players who have a more suitable career awaiting them in prison, let alone on an NBA court. Some of the heinous acts that some of these players commit leave your jaw dropped and your eyes wide open at the sight of what human beings can do to one another in a controlled environment.

    Most dirty players have redeeming qualities, however. Bruce Bowen was an amazing defender, Bil Laimbeer was an excellent glue-player that could hit from the mid-range and rebound and even Reggie Evans is a solid rebounder and defender.

    Josh McRoberts doesn't do anything. All he does on the court is throw unnecessary cheap-shots and sharp elbows. He can only score on dunks and shots near the basket and he's a semi-decent rebounder and defender. His 2010-'11 campaign with the Indiana Pacers was the best year of his short career, where he averaged seven points and five boards per.

    This year with the Los Angeles Lakers, McRoberts is averaging two points and three rebounds per in only 13 minutes per game.

    He's still receiving playing time, but hardly any amount of time compared to the five consecutive games at the beginning of the season where he played in at least 20 minutes.

Memphis Grizzlies: Hamed Haddadi

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    Hamed Haddadi received plenty of hype after becoming the first Iranian-born player to ever join the NBA after signing with the Memphis Grizzlies in the 2008 offseason.

    This came a few months after the 2008 Beijing Olympics, where NBA teams got their first look at Haddadi after playing with the Iranian national team.

    We saw Haddadi join the league and that was about all our attention span could take. He'd play in only 19 games in his rookie year and hasn't played in more than 36 games in any of the past three seasons. It's no surprise why, either, as Haddadi has a limited offensive repertoire, is incredibly slow and has shown a lot of trouble in keeping up with the way NBA teams are run.

    The 2011-'12 season has been no different. Haddadi has played in only 28 games this year and is averaging two points and two boards per. However, he did have a career game where he recorded ten points, six boards and three blocks in a win on the road against the Los Angeles Lakers.

    The Grizzlies responded by sitting him out next game. He's played in only five games since that March 23rd meeting against the Lakers.

Miami Heat: Juwan Howard

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    It's been a long time since we saw the "Fab Five" lighting it up at the University of Michigan.

    Ray Jackson never made it to the NBA, Jimmy King played for two uneventful seasons, Jalen Rose had a solid career as a swingman with six different teams and Chris Webber had a possible Hall of Fame worthy career where he would lead the Sacramento Kings to some of their best seasons in franchise history.

    All of these players retired by 2008. The fifth starter on that Wolverines team was Juwan Howard and he's still in the league somehow. It may be a surprise to many of you, but Howard is still in the NBA as a fixture on the Miami Heat bench. He's-39 years-old, the third-oldest in the league behind Kurt Thomas and Grant Hill.

    Unlike Thomas and Hill, however, Howard has stopped producing. He can't jump to block shots or rebound, is too slow to defend and can barely hit a jump shot anymore. The only reason he received any sort of playing time last year was a result of power forward Udonis Haslem being injured. Howard went from afterthought to second-string power forward out of desperation.

    This year has been more Howard's style. He's played in only 23 games with the majority of those appearances coming in garbage time. He's averaging one point on 32 percent shooting and grabbing one rebound per.

    Juwan joined the league in 1994. That was two years before Bob Dole ran for president and four years before Michael Jordan would retire a second time.

    He was playing before the Charlotte Bobcats, New Orleans Hornets, Toronto Raptors and Memphis Grizzlies existed.

Milwaukee Bucks: Jon Brockman

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    The last time I heard Jon Brockman's name being mentioned, it was last season when he was posterized by DeAndre Jordan.

    I haven't heard much since then. I can guarantee that no NBA fan has, either. There's a possibility that fans of the Milwaukee Bucks didn't even know that Brockman was still on the team. The undersized power forward-center has been featured in only 32 games with the majority of those appearances coming via garbage time substitutions.

    Brockman is averaging six minutes per-game. In those six minutes, he's posting up one point and two boards per.

    It's difficult for a player like Brockman to find a niche. He's listed as a power forward-center, yet he only stands at 6'7", which is the height of your average small forward. While you will come across undersized enforcers in Dennis Rodman and Charles Barkley, Brockman isn't close to either of those players and being kept on the Bucks basically as a safety blanket.

    Brockman is in his third year in the league, his second with the Bucks. His playing time has dropped significantly from last year where he was featured in 63 games and played 11 minutes per night.

Minnesota Timberwolves: Brad Miller

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    I'm hoping that I don't lose my loyal Brad Miller fanbase with what I'm about to say.

    Did anyone else outside of Minnesota and Miller's devoted fans, know that he was still in the league? It's surprising to think that a former All-Star who once averaged a double-double could fall so far from grace, but it's happened to one of the greats of our league.

    Miller could actually be considered one of the greatest undrafted players. He's been in the league since 1998, averaged double-digit points nine times and even made it to two All-Star games. People did take this guy seriously at one point.

    That was long ago back in 2003 and 2004. In 2012, Miller's playing career has taken a nose-dive deep into the catacombs of the Minnesota Timberwolves' bench. He's only been featured in 12 games this year and is averaging two points on 35 percent shooting. Averaging seven rebounds per-game for his career, Miller is grabbing less than one carom per.

    I wonder if Miller imagined his career ending on a bench where he's behind Darko Milicic, Nikola Pekovic and Anthony Randolph on a depth chart.

New Jersey Nets: DeShawn Stevenson

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    Not even a year ago, DeShawn Stevenson played one of the most pivotal roles on the Dallas Mavericks' championship team with his standout defense on LeBron James, and provided timely three-pointers.

    With the Mavericks looking to create cap space for a potential splash in the summer of 2012, Stevenson, along with others, was free to sign wherever he pleased as an unrestricted free agent. Since there was little hype surrounding him, Stevenson took the first offer he received which was a deal with the New Jersey Nets, two days before the start of the season.

    You'd hardly notice he was playing.

    Stevenson has started in 29 games and could arguably be one of the worst starters in the NBA. He's averaging only 19 minutes per-game and in that time he's posting up three points and two boards per. Perhaps the most disturbing stats are his shooting percentages. He's shooting 28 percent from the field and converting on only 27 percent of his three-pointers.

    He's also found a way to somehow shoot 56 percent from the foul line. This comes a year after Stevenson played in 72 games, started 54, and converted one three-pointer per-game for only the third time in his career, on 38 percent shooting.

    He can look forward to playing James one more time this year. It's doubtful that he'll get as much time as he once did with Dallas and Washington.

New Orleans Hornets: Jerome Dyson

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    I like to consider myself educated when speaking of the NBA.

    However, there are three players on the New Orleans Hornets who I had no idea were even in this league. Lance Thomas and Chris Johnson were two names that flew right over my head, and Jerome Dyson was the other. It turns out that Johnson is in his second year, and has spent time with Boston and Portland, while Thomas is a rookie from Duke who has played in 35 games.

    I hate to single one of these guys out since they're fairly young, but I had to go with Dyson simply because he's been the worst of the three.

    Dyson is an undrafted 24-year-old rookie out of Connecticut. He has played in a grand total of two games this year, in which he recorded five points on 25 percent shooting, three rebounds, six assists, a steal and a turnover.

    He has spent the majority of his time in the D-League, where he's averaging 16 points on 43 percent shooting, converting 33 percent of his three-pointers, grabbing three rebounds, dishing out two assists and nabbing two steals per.

    It seems as if there could be a silver-lining to Dyson, but for now he's the Hornets' least valuable player—which is saying something since it's the Hornets.

New York Knicks: Mike Bibby

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    After viewing Mike Bibby in last year's playoffs, which was the equivalent to sticking my face into Shaquille O'Neal's armpit after a double-overtime game, I thought for sure that no team would be desperate enough to pick him up.

    We all should have known that the New York Knicks would be that team.

    After utilizing the amnesty-clause on Chauncey Billups in order to obtain Tyson Chandler, the Knicks were left without a solid point guard who could be relied on. They had rookie Iman Shumpert and Toney Douglas, but that wasn't going to put the Knicks over the top.

    Apparently, it was Bibby that was supposed to help the team out. If you watched last year's postseason, however, you would have immediately known what type of results you were going to get. Bibby was coming off the worst shooting slump of his career. How did they expect him to play the next year?

    Bibby has played in 32 games this year and is averaging two points on 28 percent shooting. He's shooting 29 percent from deep and dishing out one assist per. It's unbelievably depressing that his career has plummeted to this depth, but it's happening, and we need to come to terms with the fact that Mike Bibby still isn't All-Star material.

    He has scored at least 10 points in only two games this year with the last time coming on January 7th.

Oklahoma City Thunder: Cole Aldrich

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    Another year and another season where Cole Aldrich can't seem to find a way off the Oklahoma City Thunder bench.

    Despite being taken with the 11th pick in the 2010 draft and having significant size to him, Aldrich has only played in 42 games in his NBA career.

    It's not to say that the Thunder haven't given him chances to perform. He played 21 minutes in a blowout win against the Golden State Warriors and responded by scoring two points, missing both shot attempts, grabbing three rebounds and picking up just as many fouls.

    A few nights later, he'd play 19 minutes against the New Orleans Hornets. This time he responded with four points on 2-of-3 shooting to go along with three boards and two blocks. Aldrich's career-highs for the year was six points against San Antonio, Atlanta and Charlotte. He has scored a total of four points in April.

    Aldrich hasn't spent any time in the D-League this year after playing in 21 games last season with Tulsa. He averaged 10 points on 54 percent shooting, grabbed nine boards and recorded nearly three blocks per.

    It's doubtful that he'll receive any sort of significant minutes with Kendrick Perkins, Nick Collison and Serge Ibaka controlling things down low.

Orlando Magic: Daniel Orton

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    It's always laughable to hear how badly the Orlando Magic could use a backup center.

    I say it's laughable because the team actually does have a backup center in former University of Kentucky standout Daniel Orton. The fifth teammate of that vaunted Wildcats team that also featured John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins, Orton was taken with the 29th pick in the 2010 draft. Former teammates Wall, Cousins, Eric Bledsoe and Patrick Patterson were all taken before him.

    For good reason, too. The Magic could use a backup center, yet they absolutely refuse to play Orton. The 6'10", 255-pound forward-center has played in only nine games and actually went his entire rookie season without playing a game. He played two games in the D-League in his first year and would record 20 points and 16 rebounds.

    Orton has at least been given a chance this year and he's even getting playing time with Dwight Howard sitting out due to injuries. However, Orton hasn't responded to the sudden minutes he's receiving and he's a combined 0-for-5 in the past three games. He received a career high 12:34 worth of playing time in a blowout win against Detroit. He missed all three of his shots, grabbed three rebounds and picked up four fouls.

    He simply isn't ready for the NBA and we're not sure why he hasn't been spending the entire season in the D-League. The Magic could really use a backup center after trading away Marcin Gortat, yet they aren't attempting to refine the only other center on their team.

Philadelphia 76ers: Craig Brackins

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    Like George Karl and Gregg Poppovich, Doug Collins attempts to find a balance in order to get the best out of each of his players.

    On the Philadelphia 76ers, the bench is the most important part of the team. In fact, the bench is arguably better than the starting lineup. Sixth man Louis Williams is actually leading the team in scoring with 15 points per-game and seventh man Thaddeus Young is the third leading scorer averaging 13 points and five boards per.

    Just about every player on this team has been utilized. Well, everyone except for Craig Brackins, who is mostly known for getting dunked on by John Wall in the preseason. The 6'10", 230-pound forward is in his second year and is still finding it extremely difficult to get on the floor. He played in only three games in his rookie season and has played in only 11 in his sophomore season.

    Brackins is averaging three minutes per-game with his high for the year being a six-and-a-half minute stint in a blowout win against the Charlotte Bobcats. He has 10 points on the year and has 18 in his career.

    The Sixers could use a domineering presence in the post. Spencer Hawes isn't the best defensive stopper, LaVoy Allen and Nikola Vucevic are projects and Tony Battie is far past his expiration date.

    If Brackins isn't beating out those guys for playing time, then there might just be something wrong with his game that may need some refining.

Phoenix Suns: Josh Childress

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    You were expecting Robin Lopez, right?

    While there's a good argument behind that, it didn't feel right to deem him as the least valuable because he's still large enough to make some sort of presence in the middle. Five points on 43 percent shooting and three boards per is enough for Lopez to wriggle his way out of being named the least valuable player on the Phoenix Suns.

    We'll instead give the honor to Josh Childress, a player who you probably thought was still playing in Greece. He's back home, however, and would probably leave a more positive impact with Phoenix if he had stayed overseas.

    The former Atlanta Hawk who spent two years in Greece is averaging three points on 47 percent shooting to go along with three boards and an assist per. He's shooting 17 percent from deep and has only been featured in 28 games. Not even Steve Nash can get the best out of Childress, who is in his second season with the Suns.

    Childress has recorded only one game where he has scored at least 10 points. In the past two seasons, he's a combined 5-for-39 from beyond the arc.

    The 17 percent he's shooting from deep this year doesn't even compare to the six percent he shot last season.

Portland Trail Blazers: Hasheem Thabeet

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    By his third year in the league, people were already talking about Darko Milicic as one of the biggest draft busts in NBA history.

    I think we have a new winner. Unless Hasheem Thabeet is going to turn his career around with the Portland Trail Blazers, it's extremely possible that he becomes infamously known as the biggest bust in NBA history. While he might not have been taken ahead of Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade, Thabeet was taken ahead of the likes of James Harden, Tyreke Evans, Ricky Rubio, Stephen Curry, DeMar DeRozan and Brandon Jennings.

    Thankfully for the team that drafted him, the Memphis Grizzlies, their need for a center didn't last long as Marc Gasol has stepped up well.

    Thabeet has been one of the league's most disappointing players since being taken with the second pick in the 2009 draft. He was given 68 games to play in, 13 of which he started, in his rookie season and played underwhelming basketball to the tune of three points, three boards and a block per.

    The Grizzlies knew they weren't getting a standout offensive threat from the 7'3" center, but they expected better than three points and three rebounds per. Chances are that they also didn't expect to send him to the D-League in his rookie season. It wouldn't be the last as he'd spend some more time in the lesser league the next season.

    After 45 awful games in his sophomore season, the Grizzlies traded him to the Houston Rockets. He'd play seven games there before being sent to the Trail Blazers. He's played 10 games with his latest team and is averaging one point and one rebound per.

Sacramento Kings: Chuck Hayes

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    The Sacramento Kings vaunted frontcourt claims another victim.

    After turning JJ Hickson into an afterthought in the span of half a season, the Kings have set their sights on destroying the career of former Houston Rockets center Chuck Hayes. While the 6'6", 250-pound undersized forward-center wasn't exactly filling the shoes of Yao Ming, Hayes was at least making an impact, averaging as much as eight points and eight boards in his final season with Houston.

    He was also shooting 53 percent and grabbing three offensive boards per.

    Then he went to Sacramento and everything came to a crashing halt.

    Hayes has played in 48 games and is averaging 20 minutes per, but his numbers are depressingly low. After having the best year of his career with the Rockets the season before, Hayes is now posting up only three points on 42 percent shooting to go along with four boards per. He has scored over ten points on only one occasion this year and last grabbed over ten rebounds on January 1st.

    I can't be the only one to notice this, but does Hayes look even more overweight than before? It seems that the lockout might have hit Hayes harder than any other player.

San Antonio Spurs: Cory Joseph

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    It was tough finding a least valuable player on the San Antonio Spurs since coach Gregg Popovich seems to find value in each and every player on his roster.

    It came down to rookie Cory Joseph, who has yet to catch on to playing in the NBA and has had a little bit of trouble in adjusting to the faster pace of professional basketball.

    Just about every single player on the Spurs has been put to good use outside of Joseph and second-year James Anderson. It's simply astounding how a team with role players such as Gary Neal, Danny Green and Tiago Splitter, guys you've probably never even heard of, could help lead an aged team like the Spurs near the top of the Western Conference.

    Joseph isn't one of those role players. In time he'll probably become the next great role player for the Spurs, but for now he's having a rough start to his NBA career.

    Taken with the 29th pick in the 2011 draft, Joseph was taken out of the University of Texas after averaging 10 points, four rebounds and three assists per in the lone season he spent as a Longhorn. Perhaps some more polishing could have been needed. Joseph's only played in 27 games this year and is averaging two points and an assist per.

    He hasn't played since March 12th. He had one start which came in a blowout loss against the Portland Trail Blazers. In 37 minutes, Joseph had 13 points on 13 shot attempts to go along with three assists. He managed to convert on two of his three three-pointers.

Toronto Raptors: Jamaal Magloire

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    What's more surprising to you? That Jamaal Magloire played in an All-Star game, or that he's still in the league?

    Buried deep in the Toronto Raptors bench, 2004 NBA All-Star Jamaal Magloire is not even close to the player that once averaged 14 points and 10 boards. Surprisingly, those were Magloire's averages in the 2003-'04 season while he was still with the New Orleans Hornets. He'd average double-digit points the next year and would never do it again.

    Magloire hasn't averaged more than seven points per game since 2006. Since then, he has spent time with Portland, New Jersey, Dallas and Miami before making possibly his final stop in Toronto. Before he was with Toronto, Magloire played three seasons with the Heat where he'd play in 54 games in his final two years with the club.

    This year has been another large disappointment for the bruiser with the sharpest elbows in the NBA. Magloire has been featured in only 33 games and can't even get minutes on a team that's lightyears out of the playoff race.

    Magloire hasn't recorded a point since March 26th where he scored three points. They may very well be his last ones in the NBA.

Utah Jazz: Jamaal Tinsley

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    This article isn't just about players who are the least valuable to their team, but it's also a general education piece on the NBA.

    Be honest, how many of these players did you even know were still in the league? I know for a fact that the Brad Miller and Mike Bibby slides threw you for a loop, but I might have just blown your mind by telling you that Jamaal Tinsley was still in the NBA.

    This is the same Jamaal Tinsley from the Indiana Pacers. There aren't many other people in the world that would have the name Jamaal spelled with two a's. This is the same player that has shot below 40 percent in six of their nine years in the league and the same player who once tricked the Pacers into giving him $6 million per-year.

    Tinsley actually spent the entire 2010-'11 season without a job. He had also missed the entire 2008-'09 season. He spent the 2009-'10 season with the Memphis Grizzlies and failed to find another team to play with after becoming a free agent. It wasn't until two weeks before the start of the regular season that the Jazz decided to sign him.

    In response, Tinsley has played in 32 games and is shooting just as horribly as he did with Indiana and Memphis. He's averaging four points and three assists per, while converting a little less than 40 percent from the field and 27 percent from deep.

    As bad as the Utah Jazz' backcourt has been this year and Tinsley still can't get significant minutes? It's been a long career.

Washington Wizards: Andray Blatche

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    You could have just said the entire Washington Wizards franchise for this slide, but we decided to narrow it down to one player in particular that has stood out above the rest as the least valuable player.

    Andray Blatche did deserve an entire slide to himself. In fact, the entire basis for this article suits him well. Not even the fans of the Wizards would consider Blatche any sort of valuable judging by the boos they unleash upon him. They probably shouldn't do so, however, since they hurt Blatche's feelings and affect his already flawed game.

    For a time, we thought of Blatche as a talent who could actually make something out of his career. He had some immaturity problems, you'll know what we mean if you watch his desperate attempt to obtain a triple-double, and some questionable decisions on offense, but he had potential and that was enough to invest in.

    Blatche averaged 17 points and eight boards per in 64 games last year. I'm not sure what happened to him this year. He hasn't played since March 18th and hasn't started in a game since January 28th. Injuries and horrible play on the court played such a large factor that the Wizards actually decided to shut Blatche down for the season.

    That's right. The team who used to have a center that ran back on defense while his team was still playing offense decided to shut someone down. Somebody better be close to Blatche to work with him through these tough times.

    Blatche has played in 26 games this year and was averaging nine points on 38 percent shooting to go along with six boards per.

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