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10 Worst NBA Draft Picks in New Jersey Nets Franchise History

Scott SewellCorrespondent IOctober 28, 2011

10 Worst NBA Draft Picks in New Jersey Nets Franchise History

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    It's actually kind of amazing how bad the Nets have been at drafting players over the past 20 years.  

    They went to back-to-back NBA Finals in 2002 and 2003 but were unable to add any key pieces to their roster through draft choices.

    These were crucial picks in the development of the franchise.  If they could have found solid role players late in the draft then it could've really sustained their success for a few more seasons.

    Instead, they just continued to pick one bad player after another and ultimately had to break up the team.

    Kenyon Martin, Brook Lopez and Kerry Kittles are the only three players that I would consider "good" draft picks since 1993.

    Picking the 10 worst picks required some tough decisions, so I'm sure you can think of some players that weren't add to the list but could have been.  Feel free to leave them in the comments section below!

10. Marcus Williams

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    Marcus Williams was drafted by the Nets with the No. 22 overall pick in the 2006 draft.

    Williams had a promising rookie season learning behind Jason Kidd at the point guard position, but his career quickly spiraled out of control.

    He received much less playing time the following season and then was ultimately traded to the Warriors.

    He would find himself out of the league in just four seasons.

    Williams ultimately ended his career with just 0.0 Win Shares.

    What could've been?

    This was a bad draft, but Kyle Lowry would've likely been a better fit for the Nets and he was taken just two picks later.

9. Zoran Planinic

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    Zoran Planinic was taken with the No. 22 overall pick in the 2003 draft.

    After the Mavericks' success with Dirk Nowitzki in the 1999 draft, more and more teams began to draft undeveloped foreign players in hopes that they would find the next hidden gem.

    Planinic did not turn out to be the next Dirk.

    Instead, Planinic spent just three seasons in the league and never averaged more than 12 minutes per game.

    He was released in 2006 and hasn't played another game in the NBA.

    Ultimately, he ended his career with just 1.6 Win Shares.

    What could've been?

    Kendrick Perkins, Leandro Barbosa and Josh Howard were all taken just a few picks behind Planinic.

8. Sean Williams

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    The Nets selected Sean Williams with the No. 17 overall pick of the 2007 draft.

    Williams was a risky pick to begin with, after being kicked off of his college team at Boston College.

    The Nets were hoping that his shot blocking and defensive ability would transfer to the NBA game, but he struggled to make his mark and was out of the league in just three years.

    Williams is currently playing in Israel and hoping to get an offer to continue his NBA career.

    Assuming that offer never comes, he will have ended his career with just 2.6 win shares.

    What could have been?

    Rudy Fernandez, Aaron Brooks and Tiago Splitter all would have been better choices.

7. Antoine Wright

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    Antoine Wright was drafted with the No. 15 overall pick of the 2005 draft.

    The Nets had a really bad run of draft picks in the mid 2000s, and Wright is definitely one of those players that underperformed.  It's actually a little surprising how long Wright stayed in the league considering how mediocre he's been.

    Wright became a somewhat serviceable role player for a few years, but he's bounced around the league between several teams for the past five seasons.  The Kings finally released him in 2010 and he hasn't signed with anyone else yet.

    Assuming he doesn't sign, he'll end his career with just 3.1 Win Shares.

    What could have been?

    Danny Granger was taken just two picks later.

6. Yinka Dare

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    Yinka Dare was selected with the No. 14 overall pick in the 1994 draft.

    Dare was a shot-blocking and rebound specialist from George Washington University.

    He had an awful NBA career lasting just four seasons and never averaging more than 10.8 minutes per game.

    Dare would ultimately end his career with a (-0.7) win shares.

    What could have been?

    Aaron McKie or Wesley Person would have been good fits for New Jersey and were taken later in the first round.

5. Winford Boynes

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    Winford Boynes was selected with the No. 13 overall pick out of the University of San Francisco and never lived up to expectations.  He was actually involved in the trade that brought Phil Jackson to the Nets. 

    The Nets gave up their No. 1 round pick in the 1978 and 1979 drafts for Jackson and the Knicks first rounder in the 1978 draft, which the Nets used to select Boynes.

    The Knicks ultimately selected Michael Ray Richardson with the 1978 pick, and they traded the 1979 pick to Seattle who drafted Vinnie Johnson.

    Boynes never averaged more than 10 points per game, and he only lasted in the league for three seasons.

    He earned a career 0.9 Win Shares.

    What could have been?

    Mike Mitchell or Dave Corzine were taken later in the draft and both players proved to be much better contributors than Boynes.


4. Pearl Washington

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    Pearl Washington was drafted with the No. 13 pick in the 1986 draft.

    Washington was a star at Syracuse University, but he played just three seasons in the NBA.  He never averaged more than 10 points per game and was ultimately taken by the Miami Heat in the expansion draft but released just a year later.

    Washington ended his career with just 1.9 Win Shares.

    What could have been?

    Dell Curry was taken just two picks later.

3. Ed O'Bannon

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    Ed O'Bannon was drafted with the No. 9 overall pick of the 1995 draft.

    O'Bannon and his brother Charles dominated the NCAA at UCLA.  Neither were successful NBA players, but Ed was expected to be much better.

    Unfortunately for the Nets, he never developed into the score he was in college and was out of the league in just four seasons.

    O'Bannon would ultimately end his career with just 1.1 Win Share.

    What could have been?

    Kurt Thomas and Brent Barry both had much better careers than O'Bannon and were taken a few picks later.

2. Mike O'Koren

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    The Nets took the hometown kid O'Koren with the No. 6 pick in the 1980 draft.  O'Koren grew up in Jersey City, NJ and played his college ball at the University of North Carolina.

    O'Koren was a standout at UNC which in turn led to him being drafted so highly by the Nets.

    Unfortunately, his talents never translated to the NBA game.

    O'Koren played for eight seasons but never averaged more than 11.4 points per game.  He had below-average rebound and assist totals also.

    He ended his career with just 14.6 win shares.

    What could have been?

    Andrew Toney and Kiki Vanderweghe were taken just a few picks later.

1. Dennis Hopson

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    Dennis Hopson was drafted with the No. 3 overall pick of the 1987 draft.

    Hopson averaged 29 points per game in his senior season at Ohio State, but he never averaged more than 15.8 points per game in the NBA.

    He was able to become a mediocre role player for a couple of seasons, but overall he did not contribute the way the Nets had envisioned with the third pick.

    Hopson ended his career with just 7.1 win shares.

    What could have been?

    Scottie Pippen, Kevin Johnson, Kenny Smith, Derrick McKey, Horace Grant, Reggie Miller and Mugsey Bogues all went after Hopson.

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