Skip to main content

10 NBA Players Who Disappeared On The Court After They Sign Huge Contracts

10 NBA Players Who Disappeared On The Court After They Sign Huge Contracts Gilbert Arenas

Getting paid is one of the main priorities players take into account when they decide where to play, as money may wind up overshadowing the possibility of actually competing for an NBA Championship.

NBA players make a lot of money throughout their careers, and some of them make the most of their contract years to fool teams into thinking they’re going to be able to sustain their performances, something that doesn’t happen too often.

Over the course of history, we’ve seen some players that have found a way to earn a lot of dough, just to chill and get paid, while they don’t put enough effort in the hardwood to actually live up to the hype. Today, we’ll talk about 10 players that disappeared after signing a huge contract.

10. Shawn Kemp: 3 Years - $37 million


There was a time when Shawn Kemp was recognized as one of the strongest human beings on earth. The guy was just scary to watch, and he was just going to humiliate you down low with one of his emphatic poster dunks.

Sadly, his lack of discipline and struggles with booze, drugs and women, made his prime last really shorter than it should’ve, and after inking his signature on a huge deal, he was just never to live up to the expectations, retiring just a couple of years after.

9. Luol Deng: 4 Years - $72 Million


For years, Luol Deng was one of the most consistent and reliable scorers in the league. He was able to play both forward spots and was even a very underrated wing stopper, and one of the most beloved players in the Bulls locker room.

After the Bulls decided to trade him away and the forward had brief tenures with the Cavs and the Heat, the Los Angeles Lakers offered him about 18 million dollars a year despite the fact that they were about to enter rebuild mode and the aging veteran wasn’t a part of their plans. Now, he’s still on their roster and getting paid for racking DNPs.

8. Joakim Noah: 4 Years - $72.5 Million


Joakim Noah definitely earned his money. He left it all on both ends of the hardwood on a nightly basis, was a vocal leader, and his grit, grind, hustle and energy were just really contagious for his teammates.

Even so, age, injuries, a suspension and a reported tantrum against coach Hornacek have him out of the Knicks rotation right now, and he’s one of the prime buyout candidates for this upcoming season.

7. Chandler Parsons: 4 Years - $94.5 Million

10 Worst Contracts In The NBA Today Chandler Parsons

Chandler Parsons had just become a surging star in this league before it all went down the drain. He wasn’t a top-tier player but had the upside to become a bit of a poor man’s Gordon Hayward.

So, the Grizzlies lured him to make him a part of their project, to be the sharpshooter and wing scorer they had desperately craved for years to take the next step forward in the playoffs. Sadly, constant injuries forced him to miss games and he’s looking out of shape, out of rhythm and out of confidence.

6. Tristan Thompson: 5 Years - $82 Million


Tristan Thompson has never been a good defender or a good scorer, but his ability to dominate the offensive glass as well as the fact that he was on LeBron James’ good side, made him earn a huge contract with the Cavs.

Everybody knew he wasn’t able to live up to that kind of deal but even so, the team didn’t hesitate to offer him over million a year just to get his hustle and effort as an offensive rebounder, a feature that he’s mostly lost as well.

5. Amar’e Stoudemire: 5 Years - $99.7 Million

Credit: Michael Chow/The Arizona Republic (Via OlyDrop)

Photo by Michael Chow/The Arizona Republic

Amar’e Stoudemire was one of the most dominant scorers of the mid-2000’s leading the Phoenix Suns to contention next to Steve Nash, so the fact that he got paid big time should come as no surprise.

Even so, Stoudemire constantly failed to take a step forward in the playoffs and was never able to lead a team to succeed, not to mention the fact that he was quite injury prone and wind up leaving the league on a very low note.

4. Bryant Reeves: 5 Years - $50.5 Million

9. Bryant Reeves

Bryant Reeves was drafted with the 6th overall pick of the 1995 NBA Draft, being the first pick in Vancouver Grizzlies history. The big man was supposed to be a force down low and really thrived for three years or so.

Following a 41 point performance against the Boston Celtics during his third season, he earned a huge contract with the Grizzlies, but his overweight and proneness to get hurt made him retire after just 6 seasons.

4. Raef LaFrentz: 3 Years - $36. Millions

Raef LaFrentz

Raef LaFrentz was supposed to become a perennial All-Star. The forward-center was taken with the 3rd overall pick of the 1998 NBA Draft by the Denver Nuggets, and his yearly averages were getting better and better.

Nonetheless, after joining the Dallas Mavericks, his career took a major downfall, up to the point where he averaged single digits in scoring in 5 of his last 7 seasons in the NBA, and he’s considered to be one of the biggest busts ever.

2. Stephon Marbury: 4 Years - $73.5 Million


Stephon Marbury was always a troublemaker. He was so full of himself that he earned a lot of detractors on his locker room, and even among the coaches, but he was a lights-out scorer when he was locked in.

Marbury was a really risky bet and needless to say, it didn’t pay off. The Knicks eventually decided to part ways with him and he was never the same player again, making just a handful of appearances for the Celtics before trying his luck in China.

Read More

Top 10 Best Isolation Players Last Season

12 NBA Players Who Make Teams Instantly Better

2000-2018 All-NBA Team

1. Gilbert Arenas: 6 Years - $111 Million

Credit: Getty Images

Credit: Getty Images

There was a time when Gilbert Arenas was one of the most entertaining players to watch in the league. He was considered to be the greatest player not named Michael Jordan to ever wear the Wizards jersey, but that was before he went completely nuts.

Arenas decided to point a gun towards his teammate Javaris Crittenton over a gambling-related incident, and even despite his great talent, he never got the chance to redeem himself (nor he should have that chance) for that kind of thug-like behavior, even after the Orlando Magic were actually crazy enough to absorb his contract.