Biggest NBA Draft busts of the last 25 years: Lottery Picks
NBA Draft time is upon us once again. This is the time of year where franchise GM’s make their money or begin the firing process. Since the inception of the Draft Lottery in 1985, there have been some legendary picks, but also some head scratchers. Below I’ve listed 7 of the biggest bust in NBA history.
Sam Bowie- Though he was drafted a year before the lottery actually began, he was taken ahead of Michael Jordan in the 1984 Draft at #2. Sam averaged about 10ppg. in his career and, as expected, this time of year is hard for him. Draft time is when he is reminded how big of a mistake his selection was. It has to damage a man’s ego, but yet he is the biggest draft bust of all-time.
Michael Olowokandi- The ‘Kandi Man’ was expected to be a savior for the Clippers, but his skills and durability made that impossible. As the #1 pick in the 1998 NBA Draft, Olowokandi was selected ahead of Dirk Nowitzki, Paul Pierce and Vince Carter. The ‘Kandi Man’ averaged 9ppg. and 7.7 rebs over the course of his 9 year career.
Kwame Brown- Brown was the #1 draft pick in the 2001 NBA Draft and was the first high school player ever selected #1 overall. The Washington Wizards probably wish they could have a do-over on this one. Brown has career averages of 7.0ppg. and 5.6rpg. Brown was picked ahead of Pau Gasol, Joe Johnson and Tony Parker.
DeSagna Diop- Also a alum of the 2001 draft, Diop was selected 8th overall by the Cleveland Cavaliers. Fortunately, this pick ensured that the Cavs would suck, therefore, Diop actually made it possible for the Cavs to get Lebron in 2003. If Diop was any good, the Cavs would not have had the top pick in 2003. So in a ironic way, he kind of worked out, I guess. Career stats: 2.1ppg. and 3.9rpg.
Darko Milicic- Milicic was picked #2 overall in the 2003 NBA Draft. He was picked ahead of Carmelo Anthony, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh. Darko perhaps may end his career as a good player, but for now he’s a bust. Career averages: 5.5ppg. and 4.0rpg.
Joe Smith- After 14 years in the league, Smith is still a good role player. The problem is, he’s been a role player his entire career. Sure, there is nothing wrong with being a role player, but as the #1 overall pick in the 1995 draft, a little more is expected. Smith was selected ahead of KG, Jerry Stackhouse and Rasheed Wallace. Since he was selected by the Golden State Warriors in 1995, Smith has been traded 11 times in his career. Career averages: 11.6 ppg and 6.7rpg.
‘Big Country’ Bryant Reeves - This guy received alot of pub and hype coming out of college and he didn’t live up to it, thats why he on this list. As the #6 overall pick in the 1995 draft and the Memphis Grizzlies first pick in franchise history, Reeves career was cut short due to conditioning problems. He played only 6 seasons and retired during the 2001-02 season. His career averages: 12.5 ppg. and 7.0rpg.
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