Jeremy Lin and the Decade's Most Over-Hyped Free Agents

Matt Shetler@@buccos12Correspondent IJuly 10, 2012

Jeremy Lin and the Decade's Most Over-Hyped Free Agents

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    Since he burst onto the scene in 2012, the hype machine has been working overtime surrounding New York Knicks point guard Jeremy Lin.

    That's especially true this offseason as almost every step Lin has taken regarding his free agent status has become big news.

    To say that there's too much hype surrounding a guy that's started 25 career games would be the understatement of the decade.

    Speaking of the decade, there have been a ton of over-hyped free agents so far in the three free-agent classes this decade.

    Here's a look at the 10 most over-hyped free agents so far this decade. 

    With that in mind, that doesn't mean any of these signings (or potential signings) weren't good signings, or in some cases great ones, it just means there was way too much hype involved.

10. O.J. Mayo, Unsigned, 2012

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    Mayo is a good player, but not a franchise-changing type of player, which is something that he wants to be paid like.

    After being the No. 3 overall pick in the draft in the 2008 draft, there's been nothing but hype surrounding Mayo. While he's a pretty decent player, he's never lived up to that hype.

    Mayo could be a nice part of a contender, signing for the mid-level exception, but his salary demands likely mean he and the hype are heading to a bad team where he can focus on putting up numbers instead of winning championships.

9. Jason Kidd, New York Knicks, 2012

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    Such a big deal was made when Kidd spurned the Dallas Mavericks for the New York Knicks, but why?

    At this point in his career, Kidd doesn't have much to offer a Dallas team where he could have potentially have had to be a starter.

    The role in New York is much better for him, but it is too be determined if he has any production left.

    I got tired of hearing how he signed with New York to mentor Jeremy Lin around the 50th time I heard it.

8. Roy Hibbert, Indiana Pacers, 2012

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    I know Hibbert went to Georgetown, but you would think he's the second coming of Patrick Ewing.

    Hibbert is a very fine player, one of the top young centers in the game, but he's also a guy that scored 12 points or fewer four times in the playoffs against the Heat, who had no real post presence to speak of.

    It looks like the Indiana Pacers are prepared to kill their cap space and match Portland's offer sheet to Hibbert, but beginning with the playoffs last season, the hype around him is starting to get out of control.

7. Nene, Denver Nuggets, 2011

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    Nene was dubbed the prize of the 2011 free agent class, and after as many as ten teams had interest in him, he ultimately re-signed with Denver after a month-long hype tour.

    That hype died down quickly as within a few months of signing a ridiculous five-year, $67 million deal, the Nuggets traded Nene to the Washington Wizards at the trade deadline.

6. Ray Allen, Miami Heat, 2012

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    Allen has been one of my favorite players in the NBA for some time, but all year we've had to hear about the breaking up of Boston's Big Three.

    Then, there was the public courting of him to Miami by LeBron James and Dwyane Wade.

    You would think this was the Allen of five or six years ago, and not the Allen that was injured for much of 2012 and shot 30.4 percent from behind the arc.

    Allen to the Heat may work out very well for both parties, but the hype surrounding his decision was insane.

5. Omer Asik, Chicago Bulls, 2012

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    Taking a shot on an unproven commodity such as Asik is one thing, but for the Bulls to match Houston's $25 million offer sheet to basically stick Asik on the bench is another thing altogether.

    For a guy that played under 15 minutes per game and averaged a career high 3.1 points in 2012, Asik is sure talked about way too much.

4. Tyson Chandler, New York Knicks, 2011

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    Had you told anyone that prior to the 2011 NBA Finals that Chandler would be one of the most sought after free agents of the year, no one would have believed it.

    But after making his presence felt against the Miami Heat, Chandler became that popular and ended up cashing in with the New York Knicks.

    It worked well for Chandler and the Knicks, and the Mavs are still paying for allowing him to walk.

    While Chandler became a culture-changer in the Big Apple, prior to the 2011-12 season, he did very little in the NBA to warrant the hype.

3. Amar'e Stoudemire, New York Knicks, 2010

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    Stoudemire was hyped as the savior of the New York Knicks when he was one of the first of the over-hyped 2010 free-agent class to sign.

    He got off to a great start in a Knicks uniform, and is still a great player, but along with the massive amount of hype that came along with being the face of a franchise that hasn't won a title since 1973, came a five-year, $100 million contract and a massive list of injuries.

    I'm sure if the Knicks could go back in time, they may think twice about that deal.

2. Jeremy Lin, New York Knicks, 2012

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    It may seem like I'm picking on the Knicks here, but nothing could be further from the truth.

    However while Lin has been a great story, you have to admit the hype surrounding a guy that has played a total of 64 NBA games, and has only been a factor in about 25 of them, is out of control.

    Has anyone ever been paid like Lin is about to on a body of work so small?

    The thing is that no one really knows what type of player Lin will become.

    He could just as easily flop as easy as he could become one of the best point guards in the game.

    That's a lot of hype to follow one kid around.

    The chances are that Lin becomes a very good guard for the Knicks and becomes one of the more marketable players in the NBA.

    With that being said, he's still way over-hyped for accomplishing nothing so far except putting together a nice 25 game stretch.

1. LeBron James, Miami Heat, 2010

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    While this signing definitely worked out well for the Miami Heat, never has anything been so over-hyped than "The Decision."

    Teams spent a couple years clearing cap space in order to attempt to sign James, and the daily hype over where LeBron should sign ended up dragging out for about a year and culminated with the regrettable ESPN special.

    Never has anything been as over-hyped as LeBron's decision to eventually sign with the Heat.