It's one thing to put up huge numbers on a contending NBA team. It's another thing entirely to put up those monstrous stats because there aren't any other options and the numbers have to come from somewhere.
While stats don't lie, sometimes they can look a little bit too impressive on the surface level, as is the case for these five players.
Now just as a heads up, even though these players come from awful teams, you won't find any Charlotte Bobcats on here. After all, who on their team has put up numbers that can even be called half-filled, much less fully inflated?
Read on to find out who the top five beneficiaries of bad teams happen to be this year.
Team: Toronto Raptors
2011-2012 Per-Game Stats: 19.5 points, 5.5 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 0.5 blocks, 0.6 steals
Seriously now, who else do you expect to score in volume on this Toronto Raptors team, Canada's minor league version of an NBA squad?
DeMar DeRozan has the potential to light it up, but he's inconsistent at best.
Jerry Bayless? Jose Calderon?
Let me pause to regain composure before attempting to write the next few names.
Linas Kleiza? James Johnson? Aaron Gray?
Team: Sacramento Kings
Position: Power forward
2011-2012 Per-Game Stats: 17.6 points, 11.0 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 1.2 blocks, 1.5 steals
DeMarcus Cousins is undoubtedly developing into one of the better big men in the NBA, but he's still putting up inflated stats thanks to the putrid play of his teammates on the Sacramento Kings.
As impressive as his 11.0 rebounds per game are, in particular his contributions on the offensive glass, it's far easier to pull down boards when more shots are missed. And we all know that Tyreke Evans, Marcus Thornton, Jimmer Fredette and the rest of the Kings' backcourt love missing more than their fair share of shots.
Team: Minnesota Timberwolves
Position: Power forward
2011-2012 Per-Game Stats: 26.0 points, 13.3 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 0.5 steals, 0.9 blocks
I absolutely love what Kevin Love has done on the basketball court, and I have no reservations about claiming he's the best power forward in the league right now. I also really didn't mean to make that awful pun at the beginning of this paragraph.
Love's 26.0 points and 13.3 rebounds per game are historically good. Seriously, those are insane numbers for this era. Even more insane are the 30.7 points and 13.9 rebounds he averaged per contest during March.
But what else would you expect on a team whose next highest scorers are Nikola Pekovic and Luke Ridnour?
Love would stand out on any team in the NBA, but a second stud on offense would bring down his gaudy scoring totals and help balance the offensive output.
Team: Golden State Warriors
Position: Shooting guard
2011-2012 Per-Game Stats: 11.9 points, 2.3 rebounds, 1.9 assists, 0.3 blocks, 0.7 steals
I'll be the first to admit that I did not see this late-season emergence from Klay Thompson coming. In fact, in the interest of full disclosure, I'm going to show you what I wrote prior to the start of the season when I predicted that Thompson would be the 35th-best rookie, falling just in between duds like Travis Leslie and E'Twaun Moore.
I have no idea how Klay Thompson is going to make it onto the court regularly unless the Golden State Warriors make a trade prior to the start of the season. After all, Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry have the starting guard spots on lockdown.
Thompson will probably serve as the backup shooting guard, but Ellis plays a whole lot of minutes on a nightly basis. In fact, his 40.3 minutes per game was tops in the league for a second straight season.
Klay Thompson is a sharp-shooting big guard with limited athleticism. In other words, he's the prototypical Warrior. And that right there is exactly why they shouldn't have drafted him.
Not exactly known for his defensive prowess, Thompson may not even get a chance to fully utilize his skills. There just aren't enough shots to go around in Golden State.
4.3 points, 1.1 assists, 0.8 rebounds per game
The problem with my prediction was that I couldn't foresee what would happen to the Warriors' backcourt. Hindsight being 20/20 and all, I probably should have guessed that Curry's ankles would let him down again and Ellis would finally be traded. But I didn't.
When both of those things happened, Thompson never looked back. In his 24 games played as a starter, the rookie has averaged 17.7 points, 3.1 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game.
Now, I'm not saying that Thompson isn't a good player. He is and I've never denied that. I just don't think he would be doing this well if the Warriors hadn't shut down every single player that is capable of scoring and placing the offensive load on Thompson's shoulders.
The fact that Mickell Gladness and Jeremy Tyler just started a game for them kind of proves my point.
If you don't recognize those names, I don't blame you.
Team: New Jersey Nets
Position: Point guard
2011-2012 Per-Game Stats: 21.0 points, 3.3 rebounds, 8.7 assists, 0.4 blocks, 1.2 steals
Does this one really need any explanation?
Deron Williams is one of the elite point guards in the NBA today (the fourth-best in my mind), but his stats are obviously going to be inflated by playing on a team that belongs in the D-League. Ironically enough, one of their emerging stars just happens to be a D-League call-up.
Without a healthy Brook Lopez for all but five games this year, D-Will knew he had to take over on offense and he never hesitated to call his own number.
The guy is a stud, but his numbers wouldn't look this gaudy on a competitive squad.