As much as I love the NBA, there are some teams and players, mostly players that I feel like they tend to get the “prisoner of the moment” treatment (as my producer Hollywood Cold would tell us. This is true. These owners tend to be so quick to give out these contracts and pay these players top dollars for temporary performances. As for myself, I like to see a players develop himself until I dish the money to them. So of course, once these players put up the stats (mostly highlights). The revenue, tickets sales and merchandise come into play and here come the owners pulling out the checkbook.
After they get paid, the players tend to slack off and their numbers drop of most importantly they don’t capitalize when the time is right (playoffs, close games). So with all of this being said, I put together my Top Overrated players in the NBA this season. This is in no particular order by the way. Time to rustle some feathers:
Jeremy Lin: In the 2011-2012 season With Lin becoming a FA that summer, Knicks fans and the city in general where all over “Linsanity” hoping for him to return. No quite. Knicks decided to go another route by going after Raymond Felton and Jason Kidd. Houston gave Lin a 3yr 25mil offer sheet. Knicks didn’t match so Lin goes to the Rockets. Rockets were hoping Lin would bring the same hype, exposure, media (mostly numbers and wins). The Rockets did make the playoffs but in my opinion not by Lin’s help. He did play all 82 games, but none of those games he didn’t NOT have the “Linsanity” effect he had in NY. He was supposed to be the PG on the rise in a new city with a superstar player (James Harden) to create a 1-2 punch. Not surprisingly, Harden did his job but more shocking that a player who no one expected to do anything (Chandler Parsons) also stole Lin’s spotlight. Parsons and Harden were on the court majority of the time handling the rock while Lin rode the bench. Leading the Rockets to the playoffs along with new Center, Omer Asik. 1st round vs. Thunder comes around and Lin was a dud. Showing that he was not ready for the playoff atmosphere. Said during Game 1 he was having chest contusions. Next 3 games he was limited and when he did play the bad shooting and turnovers continued from him. Overall I think Lin was not ready for all this and basically “stole money” from the Rockets. Never seen a player get paid so much money with a very short resume. Hopefully he will show he can earn that 8.4 million a year for the next 3 seasons.
Joe Johnson: Joe Johnson last season with the Hawks provided another season of serviceable play during the season and disappointment through the playoffs. Hawks were tying their best to find a way to get rid of JJ and his contract (6 yr 119 million dollar deal given in summer 2010). But new GM Danny Ferry found a way and traded him to the Brooklyn Nets (with Brooklyn taking on the rest of Johnson’s terrible contract). Joe has a fresh start and an opportunity to silence the haters about his playoff and clutch performances with a better team. In his first season with the Nets, all of his numbers dropped statistically. When the playoffs rolled around vs. the Bulls, it was the same story. He was no where to be found. In game 7 at home, He shot 2-14 FG and 1-9 from 3PT. Joe is expected to earn $21, $23, and $24 million the next three years on his contract. Which I call one of the worst players contracts I ever seen given to an athlete.
Blake Griffin/DeAndre Jordan: Fresh off another solid season (mostly highlight filled). Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan pretty much are trying to take strive on trying to be one of the Top PF and C in the league. Also with the fanfare they are getting in LA with their above the rim style of play. Donald Sterling decided that he needs to lock Griffin and Jordan up and make them the face of the franchise. Also mentioning that Chris Paul has already denied 2 contract extensions from Sterling. Giving Griffin a 5year 95 million dollar contract extension. Plus inked Jordan to a 4 year 43 million dollar extension. So other NBA watchers like me would expect to see Blake and DeAndre improve their game back to the basket, a serviceable jumpshot, and defense as well. Tone down the dunks and stay healthy. Well all of that was wishful thinking. They both shown a lot of promise playing a lot better offensively and on defense early in the season but that didn’t last long. Blake’s numbers this season took a nose dive. He only averaged 18pts and 8rebs (20pts and 10rebs last season). Jordan’s numbers didn’t improve vastly either. Points only improved 1 point (8.8 from 7.4) rebs down (7.2 to 8.3), also blocks decreased (1.4 from 2.0) in the playoffs vs. Memphis. Including during the season, both were in disagreements with Chris Paul and coach Vinny Del Negro. Causing Vinny to rip him after a loss one night after a game. In the playoffs, both were pretty much a non factor thanks to the play and physicality of Zach Randolph, Marc Gasol and a tough Memphis Grizzlies team. They pretty much took out of their game physically and mentally in that series and a 1st round exit. Blake and Jordan have to wake up and realize that those dunks and highlights can only take you so far in a NBA career. Fans and analysts call Blake a “superstar” because of his “highlights”. I don’t. He has to show me more than just that to get my respect especially after getting paid like this for it. With Jordan, Putting up 8 and 8 is NOT worth paying 43 million dollars.
Brandon Jennings/Monta Ellis: As much of a fan I as I am both players. I really hate to do this to them. Bad enough I hate they were paired together on a team like the Bucks where they are playing pretty much 2 on 5 out there. Both players are looking to get paid big money this summer from other teams. But they way they played this season will not help them trying to pursuer over 10 million a year contracts (co-host D.A. says he will get it. Producer Hollywood says no in a bet that is ongoing right NOW!) Both Jennings and Monta were shooting the Bucks in and out of wins and losses this season. Jennings and Monta numbers slightly dropped this season from trading shots with each other. During the 1st round of the playoffs vs. the Heat. Jennings said publicly that the Bucks will win in 6. Huge mistake. After both having good Game 1 performances (1st half mostly). They were nowhere to be found the rest of the 3 games in a sweep. Both only averaging 14pts a game in the series. This is NOT what owners want to see from players auditioning for a new team. But hey, there are 30 teams and 2 of them will break the bank. Just hope they play up to their worth afterwards.
Carlos Boozer: Ahhhh, Mr. Boozer. As much as I want to give you the benefit of the doubt you seem to never disappoint me. After the stink bomb you laid out in the playoffs last year vs. Philly (and pretty much every playoff visit you had with Chicago). I was pretty sure Chicago was going to use the amnesty clause on you and let you go. But once again, the Bulls gave you another benefit of the doubt and gave you another chance. Hoping that you play like you were playing when you were at Utah. Another season goes by and I continue to watch you settle for jumphots. Get lazy on the offensive glass and miss key shots and free throws when you team needs them the most. A huge liability on defense. Failing once again to average a double-double for the third straight season. Playoffs vs. the Nets were pretty decent to say the least. But vs. the Heat the true colors showed up again. Getting outworked and played by a smaller Chris Bosh. Nothing coming up with big shots and rebounds. Now you had a great game no doubt with 26 and 14 but as usual your presence didn’t show enough. You are set to make 32 million dollars in the next 2 years if the Bulls decide to keep you there. I wouldn’t make the choice. Its time to let you go and find you another team sir.
JR Smith/Carmelo Anthony: Yes, I know they are still in the playoffs while I'm writing this. Yes, they lead the Knicks to winning the division and a playoffs series win, finally. Yes they were #2 in the Eastern Conference. Yes Melo won the scoring title and JR won the 6th man of the year award. But guess what. I DON’T CARE. I meshed these two players together because they are both the two crutches that hold up the legs of this Knicks team that can easily be kicked away from them from their shooting. As much as a dominant offensive scorer and top player Carmelo is and how dangerous and streaky JR Smith is. They both are NOT team players. Melo and JR slow the game down so much from the Knicks with their “whoever touches the ball first, I’m going to shot” play. If they both have good shooting games they are fine. When they don’t, then it’s a wrap for them. It was a disgrace in my opinion that it took them 6 games to defeat the Celtics with Rondo. Now vs. the Pacers, they are in matchup hell and it is showing from Melo and JR. JR has not been the same since that elbow he thrown at Jason Terry that cost him a game. Both are shooting terrible in the playoffs (Melo: .449 FG .379 3PT regular seasons, .391 FG/.300 3pt in playoffs; Smith: .422-FG .356-3pt regular season, .336-FG .283-3pt in playoffs). If they lose to the Pacers (looks possibly they will) both of these players need to be highly considered to be on this list. Melo once again can’t carry a team to the Finals and fit himself in the same class as Lebron that can’t make his teammates better and sacrifice offense to take that next leap. JR Smith will continue to show the NBA that he is not the player fans think he is. Just another jack-em-joe shooting guard who disappears in clutch situations hurting his team on and off the court.
And there you have it. These are my overrated players. I told you I was going to rustle some feather with this one. Im sure that I left some players off this list. but for right now. These players are the one that I will point the finger at for now. No not the middle finger. Im not that evil.