The NBA draft is just around the corner, which is a good time to reminisce about some major draft blunders. In order from No. 5 to No. 1, let’s do this.
5. (1998) Los Angeles Clippers: No.1 Overall Pick—Michael Olowokandi, Pacific
Usually, when you have the first pick in the BASKETBALL draft, you don’t choose a SOCCER player. The Kandi Man only played a handful of organized basketball when the Clipp-Show decided to put all of its eggs into the Kandi basket.
Looks like those eggs were soft-boiled, as Olowokandi isn’t even playing anymore. Draft-mates like Vince Carter, Antawn Jamison, Mike Bibby, and Dirk Nowitzki are still playing OK I hear.
4. (2001) Washington Wizards: No. 1 Overall Pick—Kwame Brown, Glynn Academy (High School)
New GM Michael Jordan wanted to make a big splash by drafting a HS player first overall. He did make a splash... right into a pool of crap. Brown proved to be lazy and soft, a deadly combination.
Granted, looking at the talent pool that year, it’s tough to give a nod to anybody as a commendable No. 1 overall pick (with the exception of Pau Gasol). Either way, Brown is an epic failure.
3. (2003) Detroit Pistons: No. 2 Overall Pick—Darko Milicic, Yugoslavia
It’s understandable. The Pistons were already stock full of forwards and were looking to develop a young center. Unfortunately, it’s tough to do that when your starting five averaged 40—plus minutes per game and Larry Brown doesn't exactly have a reputation as a rookie guru. Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh, and Dwyane Wade went right after. So...
2. (1984) Portland Trailblazers: No. 2 Overall Pick—Sam Bowie, Kentucky
It’s tough to blame the Blazers here. They had a young star in Clyde Drexler at the shooting guard and could have really used a big man. Bowie dominated in college and may really only be shunned because Air Greatness went right after.
Bowie had a semi—productive NBA career, but most were too busy watching Jordan jamming on people to track Bowie’s stats. Charles Barkley and John Stockton went No. 5 and No. 16 respectively.
1. (1999) New York Knicks: No. 15 Overall Pick—Frederic Weis, France
In the greatest draft blunder in the history of mankind, the New York Knicks (who never fail to amuse) selected Frederic Weis, center from France. Weis is infamously remembered for being on the wrong end of the greatest poster of all time.
Maybe the Knicks, in a sly, cunning business move, drafted Weis so they could obtain the rights to his famous poster and make millions.
Ron Artest, an N.Y. native from Queens who attended local St. John's University, somehow managed to stay on the board when the 14th pick was on the clock. Yet, the Knicks looked elsewhere to the delight of angry fans everywhere.
The draft could have served the Knicks a delicious slice of New York pizza, but all they wanted was a damn crepe. And that what they got. A big piece of crepe.
Weis, who was still tramautized by the sight of Vince Carter’s manhood only inches from his ugly French face, was scared to even step foot in the country. It’s a sad chapter the Knicks will never be able to erase.