Earlier on Wednesday, Celtics Blog tweeted this:
Name your favorite Celtics prospect that you were sure of... but turned into a bust. (for me it is Kedrick Brown)— CelticsBlog (@celticsblog) August 3, 2017
That got us thinking and prompted us to tweet this:
We're stealing an idea from @celticsblog -- Name a player you thought would be a star, but eventually ended up a bust.— SB Nation NBA (@SBNationNBA) August 3, 2017
Team front offices put a load of time, effort, and resources into scouting, but sometimes things just don’t pan out. Players appear to be the second coming of an All-Star, then turn into career journeymen and role players.
There’s nothing wrong with it; it’s the nature of the game.
Here were a few of the names Twitter shouted out as players it swore would be a star but never panned out:
OJ Mayo or Michael Beasley https://t.co/ppzsZ5SCBc— Christopher Novak (@ChrisNovakBECB) August 3, 2017
Derrick Williams— KD SMH (@Dahfuk_) August 3, 2017
Hasheem thabeet— KD SMH (@Dahfuk_) August 3, 2017
Rodney Stuckey, i was at a game where he dropped 40 and i just knew he was gonna be it for the Pistons https://t.co/deXNcokMnD— Leondre (@MittenMadeDre) August 3, 2017
I thought Michael Beasley was going to be what Kristaps Porzingis is. https://t.co/thPuEBZ0Yl— Carrington Harrison (@cdotharrison) August 3, 2017
Sebastian Telfair— Stephen Eskins (@Eskins21) August 3, 2017
Dajuan Wagner— Paul Henning (@brewcitypaul) August 3, 2017
Not quite a star, but once upon a time it was almost a coin toss picking between Kendall Marshall and Lillard. Was also high on Biyombo https://t.co/Pf6VCojbcx— Mark Philip Wu (@Muwu) August 3, 2017
Now, here were some of the picks the SB Nation staff made:
Mike Prada, NBA Editor: Thomas Robinson
I keep falling for the same kind of player: the combo/power forward who scores in bunches at the college level but can’t defend or pass well enough in the NBA. Rodney White. Drew Gooden. Marcus Fizer. Chris Wilcox. Marvin Williams. Tyrus Thomas. Derrick Williams. Michael Beasley.
Robinson was my last mistake. I loved his rebounding. I loved his toughness. I loved his ability to wedge his way inside and score quickly. I forgot that he was older than his competition, wasn’t big enough to score at an NBA level, and didn’t have any other skills.
I wanted the Wizards to take him over Bradley Beal. I was wrong. And I learned my lesson just in time to jump off the bandwagon for Anthony Bennett.
Pete Volk, Intern Manager: Josh Childress
I grew up in LA in a baseball family, so I didn’t get to see much basketball as a kid. The one college game I went to was USC vs. Stanford, an extremely hype Nick Young vs. Josh Childress matchup. Childress was big and looked unstoppable in the post, and teenage me was absolutely certain I was watching the next NBA superstar.
Well, Nick Young’s still in the league, and Childress is now playing in Japan. Shows what I know!
Michael Sykes, NBA Intern: Jan Vesely
Jan Vesely was the truth — or so I thought. Dude had it all. He could jump out the gym, run from end to end and finish at the rim, block shots and guard on the perimeter. If he ever figured out how to shoot? Watch out. Plus, more than anything else, he was cool as hell. I mean, who could ever forget the “Blake Griffin is the American Jan Vesely” quote?
As a Wizards fan, I hate that Vesely didn’t succeed. But I’ll always have a soft spot in my heart for him. I secretly want him to return to the league and join the Warriors so he can have a shot at a title like all the other failed Wizards.
James Dator, Social Producer: Adam Morrison
I don’t have any logical reason why I thought Adam Morrison would be a star. There’s no sage basketball knowledge I can offer. All I knew is that the dude scored in bunches, and everything on the internet told me he was the next Larry Bird.
It’s easy to laugh now, but he straight up balled at his last season with Gonzaga. Those early-era Bobcats were in dire need of perimeter shooting, and that, paired with Emeka Okafor in the paint was supposed to be awesome.
The guy Charlotte got was nothing like what I saw in college. He was scared to shoot the ball, always hesitated with it in his hands — and that kept getting worse, and worse, and worse.
They could have had Brandon Roy, man. They could have had Brandon Roy.
Kristian Winfield, NBA Writer: Royce White
I had Royce White as the second coming of Andre Iguodala. Unfortunately, Royce never got to show his skill set at the NBA level. That’s just the nature of the game: For one reason or another, some guys just never pan out.
Grant Brisbee, Senior MLB Writer: Anthony Randolph
The Warriors didn’t have a single lousy All-Star from 1998 through 2013, and it was embarrassing. Anthony Randolph, though, gave me hope the drought was over. He was young and springy.
And he held his own. A Warriors player holding his own back then was a big, big deal. His offensive rating and defensive rating were better than average. He was 19. He was ... oh, man, he was going to be the one.
Look at this whirling dervish of a big man:
Look at the enthusiasm at around 1:20 of that clip. Look at the standing ovation; the fans who were giddy at the glimmer of a chance at hope, which wasn’t something Warriors fans were used to.
It’s why the Knicks wanted him for David Lee, and maybe I should have known that if the Knicks wanted him, there was something wrong. But I guess the Warriors did turn Randolph into an All-Star, eventually. They just did it through a trade. It’s not how I predicted it, but I suppose it still counts.
Anthony Randolph— eric molina (@ericvmolina) August 3, 2017
Tim Cato, NBA Writer: Gerald Green
Cato picked Gerald Green then vanished into thin air without providing a reason for his pick. So I’m going to argue in this space why Green wasn’t a bust. (Instead, we should throw MarShon Brooks here.)
Green was drafted on his athleticism, something he showed he still has even into his 30s. He then developed his offensive repertoire, culminating in Phoenix with career-highs for a Suns team that just missed the playoffs a few seasons ago.
Green became more than just a dunker. He’s shown an ability to score from the inside-out. If Derrick Jones Jr. develops a similar offensive attack, I think Suns fans would be pleased. For those reasons, I don’t consider Gerald Green a bust. He’s a hooper.
Besides how can a guy who does this:
... be considered a bust?