The 2006 draft had a bunch of potential, but not too many “all-star” caliber players. Of the sixty players drafted that year, only one has made it to an all-star game.
The draft created much speculation as to who would be the number one pick, and if the Raptors could go back in time, they would no doubt choose differently.
This will be a three part outlook on the best, the worst, and the middle men of the 2006 NBA draft. Check back for parts two and three.
Adam Morrison- Picked Third Overall:
What a waste of a pick. Charlotte used the third pick in the draft to take a college star. He began his career as a starter, but lost his spot due to terrible defense.
He lost the 2007 season because of a torn ACL, and subsequently vanished. Upon his return to the Bobcats, he had lost his nerve, and Coach Larry Brown cut his minutes. He was later traded to the Lakers.
This will always be the case with Morrison; a great college player and a terrible NBA guard. Now that he’s with the Lakers, it is almost certain the only place we will see Morrison is at the end of the bench.
Shelden Williams- Picked Fifth Overall:
“The Landlord” falls under the same category as Morrison. Williams had a great college career, becoming the 3rd player in ACC history to have 1500 points, 1000 rebounds, and 350 blocks.
Picked 5th by the Atlanta Hawks, Williams also began his career as a starter, but soon found himself unable to play center in this league. He is in the same mould as Ben Wallace, but nowhere near as athletic.
The only value he gave to the Hawks was being in the trade that brought Mike Bibby to town.
He is currently with the Boston Celtics, acting as insurance in case Garnett, Rasheed, and Big Baby all go down with injuries.
At least he is married to Candice Parker, the most dominant player in the WNBA.
Patrick O’Bryant- Picked Ninth Overall:
Patrick O’Bryant has made the most of his impressive frame. As the 9th pick in the NBA draft, Golden State felt that they could use his frame to add defense to their fast break style of play. He was considered a pick that needed work, and three years later very little has changed.
Still known as a shot blocker, his offense is truly horrid. He is unable to dominate even at the D-League level, but may always find a role on a team hoping for a big who can grab the occasional rebound and block.
He is currently playing for the Raptors, mainly as a practice body.
Mouhamed Sene- Picked Tenth Overall:
The definition of a player based on potential and not talent. Sene was taken 10th overall by the Seattle Supersonics (now the Oklahoma City Thunder) with hopes he could develop into a legitimate starting center in the league.
Known for his shot blocking abilities, Sene has been unable to get any playing time to show it off. In his three years, he has only played in 47 career games, starting in three.
He was unable to even start in the D-league, starting 5 of 28 games, although he did manage to be an All-NBA Developmental team honorable mention.
He now plays for the Knicks, one of the worst teams in the league, and a place he will continue to sit on the bench.
Hilton Armstrong- Picked Twelfth Overall:
This was a pick based on a player coming out of a strong school, along with a handful of his teammates. While teammate Rudy Gay has shown he has the ability to play in the NBA, Armstrong has proven very little.
He averages less than 13 minutes a game, and in 191 career games he has started only 29. Armstrong was drafted due to his athleticism and shot blocking ability, yet he averages only half a block a game.
His athleticism should flourish alongside Chris Paul, and that has yet to happen. For a center to average 2.7 rebounds a game is inexcusable.
He has become a serviceable backup in New Orleans, but he is not expected to be a starter for any NBA team.