Hype is something that may wind up killing a young man’s career, as putting a lot of pressure on their shoulders may be just too much to handle and they fail to fulfill what was expected out of them.
Young ballers often fail in the league for a lot of different reasons. Either they’re never able to transform their bodies to be able to deal with an 82 game season, or they don’t find enough playing time or a system that suits their talents, or they lack the mental strength to cope with such a demanding environment, or just because they weren't that good to begin with.
It’s pretty normal to experience some growing pains while being in the first couple of years in the Association, but continuing to struggle as years go by may wind up killing a young man’s career. Today, we’re going to let you know about 10 players we all thought we’re bound to become stars but wind up being huge busts.
10. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist’s top-notch defense led the Kentucky Wildcats to the National Championship back in 2012 and going as high as the 2nd overall pick of that Draft, everybody hoped he would become a lockdown defender and dominant presence in the wings.
Needless to say, that’s far from his reality right now, and the injury prone forward has mightily struggled to establish himself as a steady contributor through 6 campaigns in the NBA, being more of a spacing liability than a truly productive baller.
9. Sebastian Telfair
Entering the league straight out of high school, Sebastian Telfair became the shortest player to be Drafted while skipping college in NBA history, mostly because of how freakingly talented he was in the offensive end of the floor.
Being taken with the 13th overall pick by the Portland Trail Blazers in 2004, the tweener point guard was never able to consistently knock down shots while also being a huge defensive liability, up to the point where he was wandering around the league and was forced to try his luck overseas.
8. Eddy Curry
Due to his strong and well-built physique, Eddy Curry was even nicknamed “Baby Shaq” during his high school days, and even though he had already committed to playing for DePaul University, he just skipped college and entered the league straight out of high school.
Being drafted 4th overall by the Chicago Bulls in 2001, everybody expected Curry to establish himself as a dominant presence down low in both ends of the glass, but he was never able to average over 7 boards a game, not to mention his defensive awareness was pretty much non-existent.
7. Darius Miles
Darius Miles was selected directly from high school by the Los Angeles Clippers with the 3rd overall pick in the 2000 NBA Draft. He was selected in the First Team NBA All-Rookie in 2001, averaging 9.4 points with 5.9 rebounds and 1,5 blocks per game. Miles was a great prospect, but he never succeeded in playing at the highest level.
After only two seasons with the Clippers, he was traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers and two years after to the Portland Trail Blazers. His best season was in 2006, where he averaged 14.0 points, 4.6 rebounds and 1.0 blocks per game. After that, he spent only 1 more season in the NBA, playing for the Memphis Grizzlies.
6. Adam Morrison
Michael Jordan is by far the greatest player in the history of this game, but he’s also one of the worst dudes when it comes to recognizing talent, and Adam Morrison was one of the biggest examples of that trend when MJ drafted him with the 3rd overall pick of the 2006 NBA Draft to join his Hornets.
Morrison was kind of impressive throughout his freshman year in Gonzaga University, but due to several health issues with diabetes, and a very inconsistent jump shot, he was only able to stay put in the league for 4 seasons.
5. Thomas Robinson
Coming out of the University of Kansas, Thomas Robinson was supposed to dominate both ends of the glass early on in the NBA, so the Sacramento Kings got him with the 5th overall pick of the 2012 Draft.
Nonetheless, his lack of discipline and hard-nosed temper, as well as his complete lack of jump shot and improvement on the offensive end of the floor have made the tweener power forward kind of obsolete for modern basketball, up to the point where he’s been passed around the league and is not even a part of the Lakers’ rotation.
4. Kwame Brown
Kwame Brown is yet another example of how poorly Michael Jordan has fared on a team’s front office, being drafted with the 1st overall pick of the 2001 NBA Draft by the Washington Wizards and being considered to be arguably the biggest bust of the Draft before Anthony Bennett.
Brown’s lack of character became pretty clear after being pretty much bullied by His Royal Airness and then by Kobe Bryant. Coming out of high school, he looked poised for stardom after leading the nation in blocks and boards, but wind up posting career averages of 6.6 points, 5.5 rebounds and 0.6 swats per game.
3. Darko Milicic
At the tender age of just 17 years old, the Detroit Pistons drafted Darko Milicic with the 2nd overall pick of the 2003 NBA Draft, one of the biggest mistakes any franchise in any single sport has ever committed, considering that Draft would go down in history as one of the most stacked ever.
Milicic was an out of date power forward that was never able to establish himself in either side of the glass, posting career averages of 6 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.3 blocks per game. Still, what makes him one of the biggest busts ever is the fact that he was drafted ahead of players of the likes of Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade.
2. OJ Mayo
There was a time where OJ Mayo was considered to be the most talented player in the nation, with agents pretty much fighting to represent him and every scout in the nation keen to take a look at his offensive talent, being drafted with the 3rd overall pick of the 2008 NBA Draft by the Timberwolves and immediately traded to the Grizzlies.
Mayo’s lack of discipline and questionable work ethic got him out of the league, as he was never able to focus into becoming a true contributor in any of his teams. Up to this point, he’s not even playing in the league anymore due to an undisclosed suspension, and his days in the NBA may be over by now.
1. Greg Oden
Coming out of Ohio State University, Greg Oden was supposed to be something of the likes of the second coming of Shaquille O’Neal, being an already NBA ready talent with a strong and well-built physique that could make a huge impact in both ends of the glass.
Oden was taken with the 1st overall pick of the 2007 NBA Draft, one pick ahead of Kevin Durant. He was supposed to take the Portland Trail Blazers forward, but constant injuries stalled his development, up to the point where he couldn’t even make more than 61 appearances throughout the full season.