Publish date:

10 NBA Players You Forgot Were Top 5 Picks

Fadeaway World

Fadeaway World

Drafting is one of the toughest tasks any general manager and front office must go through, as you can never tell exactly how a player is going to turn out, or even if he'll break out as a star and end up leaving the team.

That's why the NBA Draft has cost so many executives their jobs, and why so many players end up being deemed busts because they don't play at the level you'd expect from a top-5 pick.

And throughout the course of the years, there have been several top-5 picks that have massively underperformed over their careers. Today, we're going to talk about some of the players you may have forgotten that were drafted with a top-5 pick since 2007:

2007 - Jeff Green (5th)

Jeff Green cavs

Back in 2007, the Seattle Supersonics took Kevin Durant 2nd overall and then landed Jeff Green with the 5th overall pick with a trade. That way, they were supposed to kick start their rebuilding process with two young scorers.

Needless to say, Green never proved to be worthy of a top-5 selection over his career. He's been a streaky scorer and has had some nice moments thanks to his athleticism, but that's it. Now, he's a role player for the Utah Jazz.

2008 - Michael Beasley (2nd)

Beasley

Michael Beasley was ranked as the best power forward on his Draft class and one of the best players in the nation. His scoring ability and combination of size and skill made him an intriguing and exciting prospect.

That's why the Miami Heat took him 2nd overall in 2008. However, lack of discipline, off-court issues, and a poor work ethic prevented him from having the great career we all thought he'd have. He's still a walking bucket, though.

2010 - Evan Turner (2nd)

EvanTurner

There's a reason why Evan Turner gets booed every time he sets foot on Philadelphia, and that reason is the fact that they took him 2nd overall in 2010, but he never lived up to the hype. Hell, he wasn't even in the team some years later.

Turner is now a role player for the Atlanta Hawks after bouncing around the league for a couple of years. He never fulfilled his potential and is considered to be one of the biggest busts of the past decade.

2011 - Tristan Thompson (4th)

Credit: Getty Images

Credit: Getty Images

The Cleveland Cavaliers were entitled to the 1st and 4th overall picks back in 2011. They used the first in Kyrie Irving, and the ladder in Tristan Thompson, a Canadian rebounding force that looked poised to dominate the league.

However, Thompson never actually stood up to what people expected out of him, and if it wasn't for a very good playoff stint and rapport with LeBron, he would've never signed that huge extension with the team. He's a great offensive rebounder, though.

2012 - Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (2nd)

michael-kidd-gilchrist-separated-shoulder-charlotte-hornets

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist has to be one of the worst mistakes the Charlotte Hornets ever did in the Draft. They took him 2nd overall ahead of guys like Bradley Beal, Andre Drummond, Damian Lillard, and Draymond Green.

Kidd-Gilchrist was supposed to be one of the league's top-tier defensive talents. However, his lack of impact in the offensive end made him kind of liability for the Hornets, as well as his huge contract.

2013 - Otto Porter Jr (3rd)

Otto-Porter-Jr.-e1483326238945

Otto Porter Jr made it to the league with high praise, being Drafted 3rd overall by the Washington Wizards with the hope of him becoming the missing piece their young core needed to take a step forward in the playoffs.

And while Porter ended up being quite a solid 3-and-D player, he's nowhere near a top-3 pick. As a matter of fact, the Wizards ended up trading him away on a salary dump deal just 5 seasons after drafting him.

2014 - Dante Exum (5th)

Dante Exum jazz

Dante Exum was called to be one of the league's ultimate two-way guards, so the Utah Jazz took him with the 5th overall pick hoping he'd be the guy they needed to turn their franchise around. Needless to say, that didn't happen.

Exum is a great defender with the ability to guard multiple positions. However, constant injuries stalled his development as a scorer and playmaker, and the Jazz have found the way to win without him.

2015 - Mario Hezonja (5th)

Mario Hezonja

Mario Hezonja was considered the best player in Europe back in 2015. He was thriving at Barcelona and making a fool of opposing defenders night after night, so the Orlando Magic thought they were getting a steal with him.

Hezonja, however, was never able to become a consistent scorer at the NBA level. Also, he showed a poor work ethic and a lack of commitment in the defensive end, so the team didn't even pick up his option once his deal ran out.

2016 - Dragan Bender (4th)

pi-nba-suns-dragan-bender-070916.vadapt.664.high.96.0.0

3 years ago, Dragan Bender was taken with the 4th overall pick of the Draft. Now, he's playing 9.7 minutes per game for the Milwaukee Bucks and has only made 3 appearances this season, after missing most of his career with injuries.

Bender was supposed to be a solid stretch four that could put the ball on the floor, shoot the three, and even play below the rim. However, injuries, a stacked frontcourt at Phoenix, and poor management make him look like a massive bust.

2017 - Josh Jackson (4th)

Michael Gonzales/NBAE via Getty Images

Michael Gonzales/NBAE via Getty Images

A lot of scouting reports had Josh Jackson as a dark horse to be the best player from his Draft. He had the upside to be a two-way stud like Jimmy Butler or even Paul George if he ever developed a consistent jump shot. It looks like they were all wrong.

Jackson struggled as a defender during his time at Phoenix, but his offense was even worse. Notably, he was reluctant to stay out of trouble and the Suns eventually gave up on him. Now, he's suspended from the Memphis Grizzlies' G-League affiliate.