2011 NBA Draft: The 10 Worst Draft Classes in NBA History
The 2011 NBA Draft class is shaping up to be one of the poorest in recent memory.
In fact, it has the potential to go down as one of the worst of all time.
Although it's still a little early to pass that sort of judgement on the "baby ballers" bound for the league, there's plenty of evidence to support that the following 10 draft classes described here take the cake for the most dreadful in NBA history.
10. 2008 Draft Class
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images
Yes, MVP candidate Derrick Rose was the first overall selection from this draft.
Budding stars like Kevin Love, Russell Westbrook, Danilo Gallinari and Eric Gordon came from inside the top 10, so what makes this draft class so poor?
Joe Alexander has never come close to making an impact after being drafted eighth overall. Michael Beasley is still trying to figure it out at the professional level, after the entire world was convinced he should've gone ahead of D-Rose. Anthony Randolph has left his potential unfulfilled and Robin Lopez is playing into his nickname "Sideshow Bob" brilliantly.
This class has had average success at best, despite the stars that headlined the first round.
First Five Selections: D. Rose (CHI), M. Beasley (MIA), O. Mayo (MIN), R. Westbrook (SEA), K. Love (MEM)
9. 1975 Draft Class
Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images
David Thompson was the first overall selection and went on to enjoy prolific success, eventually being selected to the Basketball Hall of Fame.
However, he only played nine seasons, due to injury and alcohol-related problems.
Although this class also included Darryl Dawkins, his impact off the hardwood has far exceeded anything he ever did while on it.
Alvan Adams and Lionel Hollins were the only other notable names that inspire any excitement 36 years later.
First Five Selections: D. Thompson (ATL), D. Meyers (LAL), M. Webster (ATL), A. Adams (PHX), D. Dawkins (PHI)
8. 1973 Draft Class
Chris Graythen/Getty Images
Doug Collins is not only a phenomenal coach, he's also a former No. 1 overall selection.
While the 1973 draft class rears its ugly head on this list, Collins was the lone bright spot out of this otherwise mediocre group of players.
George McGinnis, Kermit Washington and Larry Kenon were the only other All-Stars to emerge from this draft class.
First Five Selections: D. Collins (PHI), J. Brewer (CLE), E. DiGregorio (BUF), M. Green (SEA), K. Washington (LAL)
7. 2000 Draft Class
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
Stromile Swift, Darius Miles, Marcus Fizer and DeMarr Johnson were four of the top six picks.
Eleven seasons later, not a single one of them remains in the NBA.
This group also touted Chris Mihm (seventh), Mateen Cleaves (14th), Speedy Claxton (20th) and Mark Madsen rounded out the first round (30th).
Michael Redd is the only legitimate star player to emerge from this draft, and even he has been a massive disappointment in recent seasons with injury problems.
First Five Selections: K. Martin (DEN), S. Swift (VAN), D. Miles (LAC), M. Fizer (CHI), M. Miller (ORL)
6. 2002 Draft Class
Jeff Gross/Getty Images
I guess size isn't everything.
Yao Ming was the top pick in this draft. Although he enjoyed several successful seasons in the NBA, it doesn't look like he'll ever play again, after recurring foot fractures that have greatly sapped his abilities.
While the top 10 picks included Caron Butler, Amar'e Stoudemire and Carlos Boozer, those two were passed over for Jay Williams, Mike Dunleavy Jr, Drew Gooden, Nikoloz Tskitishvili and DeJuan Wagner.
Much like the preceding 2000 class, it's tough to find players from this class who have remained in the league to this day.
First Five Selections: Y. Ming (HOU), J. Williams (CHI), M. Dunleavy (GS), D. Gooden (MEM), N. Tskitishvili (DEN)
5. 2006 Draft Class
Christian Petersen/Getty Images
While LaMarcus Aldridge is certainly making up for his draft mates this season, it's no secret that most teams struck out with their 2006 picks.
Shelden Williams has bounced around from team to team as a body at the end of the bench, Mouhamed Sene is an absolute afterthought and the legend of Adam Morrison and his mustache is best left at Gonzaga.
Rajon Rondo is the only legitimate NBA star to come out of this class, and despite what Bargnani supporters might argue, he's not a franchise cornerstone.
First Five Selections: A. Bargnani (TOR), L. Aldridge (CHI), A. Morrison (CHA), T. Thomas (POR), S. Williams (ATL)
4. 1986 Draft Class
Matt King/Getty Images
You know what's coming, Celtics fans.
Len Bias never played a game for the team, after being drafted second overall. Instead, he chose a life filled with cocaine usage, which tragically cut his promising career short.
There were some fantastic value picks in Dennis Rodman, Mark Price and Jeff Hornacek in this draft. But outside of a few diamonds in the rough, this group was among the least talented to ever grace the NBA hardwood.
First Five Selections: B. Daugherty (CLE), L. Bias (BOS), C. Washburn (GS), C. Person (IND), K. Walker (NYK)
3. 2001 Draft Class
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images
Michael Jordan will go down as the best basketball player in the history of the game, but his talent evaluating skills might only be as strong as his ability to hit a curveball.
Kwame Brown is among the worst first overall picks in the history of the league, as he has never found success at any of his several stops throughout his tenure in the NBA. Seventh overall pick Eddie Griffin's career battled mental health issues before his recent passing, Kedrick Brown lasted for about a minute and Joe Fortefor about 30 seconds.
Pau Gasol, Joe Johnson, Gerald Wallace, Tony Parker and Zach Randolph headline this class, but even they don't save the day for this lackluster bunch.
Oh, and two words for all my Knicks fans reading this: Eddy Curry.
First Five Selections: K. Brown (CHA), T. Chandler (LAC), P. Gasol (ATL), E. Curry (CHI), J. Richardson (GS)
2. 1990 Draft Class
Ethan Miller/Getty Images
Gary Payton was the strongest player in this draft class, and that's not saying much.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not anti-GP in any manner, but as good as he was over the course of his excellent career, he's not exactly the among the most glorified players.
Jayson Williams was also selected 21st overall in 1990, which is a rather ominous cloud cast over this crop of players 21 years later.
Kendall Gill was a solid player drafted fifth overall, but his hairline was infinitely better than his basketball skills.
First Five Selections: D. Coleman (NJ), G. Payton (SEA), C. Jackson (DEN), D. Scott (ORL), K. Gill (CHA)
1. 1998 Draft Class
Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images
The Candy Man can, but this Kandi man couldn't.
Michael Olowakandi was supposed to be the franchise face of the downtrodden Los Angeles Clippers, but the 7'1" first overall selection could never quite hack it in the NBA.
Boasting gems like Raef LaFrentz (third), Robert Traylor (sixth), Larry Hughes (eighth), Bonzi Wells (11th) and Michael Doleac (12th), this class may have been the most overhyped group of overpaid players in quite some time.
Dirk Nowitzki, Paul Pierce and Vince Carter are the three perennial All-Stars who picked up the slack for this otherwise embarrassing group.
First Five Selections: M. Olowakandi (LAC), M. Bibby (VAN), R. LaFrentz (DEN), A. Jamison (TOR), V. Carter (GS)