Darko Milicic and the Twenty Worst Top-10 NBA Draft Picks from 2001-08
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After taking a look at the NBA drafts from 2001 through 2008, one thing that I noticed was how many terrible top 10 picks were made from that time frame. I could have made this list into a top 30 or 40 worst top 10 picks, but I settled for 20.
More often than not, having a top 10 pick means your team didn't have a quality season in the prior year. So, it is important to draft a quality player who can help improve your team for years to come. Unfortunately, many teams fail to do this.
Here is a list of the 20 worst top 10 picks from 2001-08. They are not in order, just listed by the year they were drafted.
Feel free to comment on the list, and how you would rank them.
Kwame Brown, 1st overall pick in the 2001 NBA Draft
Selected: First overall pick in the 2001 NBA Draft by the Washington Wizards.
Kwame Brown was the first player to be drafted 1st overall straight from high school. It would be an understatement to say college may have helped.
His rookie season was a complete dud, as he averaged only 4.5 points per game and 3.5 rebounds.
In his 10 seasons as a pro, he has only averaged double-digit scoring once in his career.
The Wizards, Lakers, Grizzlies, Pistons and Bobcats have all tried to get Kwame to play like a first overall pick, only to find that he is nothing but wasted potential.
Eddy Curry, 4th overall pick in the 2001 NBA Draft
Selected: Fourth overall pick in the 2001 NBA Draft by the Chicago Bulls.
When Tyson Chandler, the second overall pick in 2001 was traded to the Bulls on draft night, the Bulls were expected to have two dominating forces in the middle along with Eddy Curry.
While Curry showed his potential at times, his weight problems really affected his ability to perform at a high level.
He had one solid season after being traded to the Knicks, where he averaged 19.5 points per game in 2006-07.
But, in the last three seasons he has appeared in a total of 10 games, and he didn't even appear in a game last season.
Curry is seen as one of the reasons the NBA is locked out, because of the enormous contract he had that was not deserved.
Eddie Griffin, 7th overall pick in 2001 NBA Draft
Selected: Seventh overall pick in the 2001 NBA Draft by the New Jersey Nets (traded to Houston).
Eddie Griffin's NBA career only lasted five seasons, all of which were marred with underachievement.
There isn't much room in the NBA for 6'10" guys who shoot a career 37.7 percent from the field.
Griffin was able to bring some shot blocking to the table, but very little else. Tragically, Griffin passed away in 2007.
DeSagana Diop, 8th overall pick in 2001 NBA Draft
Selected: Eighth overall pick in the 2001 NBA Draft by the Cleveland Cavaliers.
When the eighth overall pick scores a total of 25 points his rookie season, it is not a good sign that the player is going to pan out.
DeSagana Diop has proven this.
In 10 seasons, three points per game is his career high for a season.
While he has been a halfway decent shot blocker and rebounder, he has been a complete non-entity on the offensive end.
Rodney White, 9th overall pick in 2001 NBA Draft
Selected: Ninth overall pick in the 2001 NBA Draft by the Detroit Pistons.
Rick Pitino said after he was drafted that he could see him winning Rookie of the Year.
His rookie season saw him playing 16 games, averaging 3.5 points per game.
That was White's only season with the Pistons, and he only managed to play three more seasons in the NBA with the Nuggets and Warriors.
Jay Williams, 2nd overall pick in 2002 NBA Draft
Selected: Second overall pick in the 2002 NBA Draft by the Chicago Bulls.
Jay Williams was an absolute stud at Duke, and it was believed those talents would translate well into the NBA.
Unfortunately, due to a motorcycle accident, Jay Williams' NBA career was over after just one season.
His one season saw him average 9.5 points per game and 4.7 assists. He was benched for Jamal Crawford late in the season.
Bulls fans can only wonder how Jay Williams' career would have turned out. Luckily, six years later they drafted another point guard, reigning MVP Derrick Rose.
Nikoloz Tskitishvili, 5th overall pick in 2002 NBA Draft
Selected: Fifth overall pick in the 2002 NBA Draft by the Denver Nuggets.
The fact that I couldn't find any good videos on Tskitishvili speaks volumes towards how unproductive his NBA career was.
He was 7'0 tall and had a career 30.4 percent field-goal percentage.
Tskitishvili lasted four seasons in the NBA with the Nuggets, Warriors, Timberwolves and Suns with career averages of 2.9 points per game and 1.8 rebounds.
Dajuan Wagner, 6th overall pick in 2002 NBA Draft
Selected: Sixth overall pick in the 2002 NBA Draft by the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Dajuan Wagner was known as a scorer coming out of the University of Memphis, and even had a 100-point game as a high school player.
In his rookie season, Wagner showed some promise averaging 13.4 points per game.
Wagner's career lasted only two more seasons and one game with the Warriors in the 2006-07 season.
Wagner also had to overcome adversity as it was learned he had colitis, an inflammation of the colon or large intestine. This, coupled with injuries, never let Dajuan Wagner have the NBA career he would have liked.
Darko Milicic, 2nd overall pick in 2003 NBA Draft
Selected: Second overall pick in the 2003 NBA Draft by the Detroit Pistons.
Darko Milicic will forever be known in history as one of the most famous awful draft picks the NBA has ever seen.
Milicic was able to score 48 total points his rookie season. He scored a grand total of 152 points as a member of the Pistons.
His best season came last season with the Timberwolves where he averaged 8.8 points per game, 5.2 rebounds, and 2 blocks.
Michael Sweetney, 9th overall pick in 2003 NBA Draft
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Selected: Ninth overall pick in the 2003 NBA Draft by the New York Knicks.
I couldn't even find a video of Sweetney, besides of him playing overseas.
Michael Sweetney was a power forward who had weight problems that seemed to drain him of the ability to become an efficient pro.
Sweetney only lasted four seasons in the NBA with the Knicks and the Bulls, with career averages of 6.5 points per game and 4.5 rebounds.
Rafael Araujo, 8th overall pick in 2004 NBA Draft
Selected: Eighth overall pick in the 2004 NBA Draft by the Toronto Raptors.
The video I posted basically sums up Rafael Araujo's NBA career.
Araujo lasted for a total of 139 career NBA games in three seasons. His career averages were 2.8 points per game and 2.8 rebounds.
Luke Jackson, 10th overall pick in 2004 NBA Draft
Selected: 10th overall pick in the 2004 NBA Draft by the Cleveland Cavaliers.
All you have to do is look up Luke Jackson's career NBA stats to see that he did not warrant a top 10 pick.
Jackson played for four teams in four seasons with 73 career games and 252 career points.
Perhaps if the Cavaliers didn't blow their top 10 picks in 2001, 2002 and 2004, LeBron James would have had more talent around him and would have stayed in Cleveland.
Marvin Williams, 2nd overall pick in 2005 NBA Draft
Selected: Second overall pick in the 2005 NBA Draft by the Atlanta Hawks.
Marvin Williams hasn't had a terrible career with the Hawks, as in his six seasons he has averaged 11.7 points per game and 5.3 rebounds.
It's just that the Hawks needed a point guard—and still do. The two picks after Williams were Deron Williams and Chris Paul, two of the best point guards in the NBA.
Ike Diogu, 9th overall pick in 2005 NBA Draft
Selected: Ninth overall pick in the 2005 NBA Draft by the Golden State Warriors.
Ike Diogu is a big-bodied power forward who has done nothing in his NBA career that stands out.
Diogu has played in five seasons with five different teams with career averages of six points per game and 3.1 rebounds.
Adam Morrison, 3rd overall pick in 2006 NBA Draft
Selected: Third overall pick in the 2006 NBA Draft by the Charlotte Bobcats.
Adam Morrison was compared to Larry Bird at one point in this video.
So, let's just say Adam Morrison's NBA career has been quite the disappointment.
He averaged 11.8 points per game as a rookie. Since then, he has scored 283 points in his NBA career with the Bobcats and Lakers.
What happened to the player who was so loved at Gonzaga?
Shelden Williams, 5th overall pick in 2006 NBA Draft
Selected: Fifth overall pick in the 2006 NBA Draft by the Atlanta Hawks.
It's not a good sign as a fifth overall pick when your wife, Candace Parker, is seen as a better basketball player than you are.
Williams was a touted player at Duke, who has done nothing noteworthy in the NBA.
In five NBA seasons, his career averages stand at 4.5 points per game and four rebounds.
Patrick O'Bryant, 9th overall pick in 2006 NBA Draft
Selected: Ninth overall pick in the 2006 NBA Draft by the Golden State Warriors.
Patrick O'Bryant was a 7-footer out of Bradley, who was expected to be the Warriors center of the future.
Instead, O'Bryant has only played in 90 career NBA games with 186 career points and 127 career rebounds.
Mouhamed Sene, 10th overall pick in 2006 NBA Draft
Selected: 10th overall pick in the 2006 NBA Draft by the Seattle SuperSonics.
Sene has to go down as one of the most unproductive top 10 picks in NBA history.
Sene played for three seasons, appeared in 47 career NBA games, and scored 103 points. Not much else is needed to be said here.
Greg Oden, 1st overall pick in 2007 NBA Draft
Selected: First overall pick in the 2007 NBA Draft by the Portland Trail Blazers.
Greg Oden has played in 82 career NBA games. While it takes some players one season to accomplish this, Oden has already been a pro for four seasons.
He did not appear in a game his rookie year or last season due to injury.
He has shown the ability to be a force down low when he is actually on the court, but Blazers fans think aloud what it would be like if they drafted the two-time reigning scoring champion instead, Kevin Durant.
Joe Alexander, 8th overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft
Selected: Eighth overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft by the Milwaukee Bucks.
Joe Alexander enjoyed a stellar, final season with West Virginia, which rose his stock immensely as he was drafted eighth overall.
Alexander averaged 4.7 points per game and 1.9 rebounds per game his rookie season with the Bucks.
Since then, he appeared in eight games with the Bulls in the 2009-10 NBA season, and did not play in the NBA last season.