A few weeks ago 18 year NBA stalwart Charles Oakley gave an iconic radio interview calling out some current and former players as being soft. Oak’s claim to fame was his toughness, grit, tenacity, and work ethic. He admitted to not being the most talented guy on the court, but he could do things to be effective. As a big guy without a huge offensive repertoire, Oakley said he could at the very least play good defense, grab lots of rebounds, and make his foul shots. He accomplished all of those things by being known as a physical defender (making the all defensive 1st team once and 2nd team once), averaging 9.5 rebounds per game for his career (twice leading the league in boards), and hitting 76% of his free throws (7 times finishing over 80% from the line). In honor of Charles Oakley’s wise statement, we present the anti-Oak list … bigs in the NBA who make more than $5 million per season, and bring considerably little to the table for that cost.
He gets paid five million dollars for every rebound he averages on the season.
Somehow this guy makes just a hair under $7 million per season. When the owners were complaining during the lockout about the small market teams having trouble competing, all the Players Association lawyers should have done is pointed to Diop’s contract. Yes he has size, but he doesn’t even use it effectively. His gawdawful career numbers are 2 points, 3.7 rebounds, and 47% from the line. To make matters worse, despite being 7 feet and 280, his field goal percentage is only 43%, and he doesn’t block shots. Diop and Dwyane Wade have played in exactly the same number of NBA games, and Diop has only 28 more blocks than the 6’4” shooting guard. Very sad.
Ignore all of the Lob City highlight plays … Jordan is highly overrated. Ten million dollars is worth the grand total of 8 points, 9 rebounds, and 48% from the line. Crazy enough, these are all career highs for Jordan! His career averages are 6 points, 6 rebounds, and 42% free throws. I will give him credit for being an above average shot blocker, but much more is expected from him once Chris Paul joined the team, and he signed such a lucrative contract.
Oakley actually called Perkins out by name for getting dunked on by Blake Griffin and not being upset about it. At just over 7 million dollars per season, Perk gets paid a ton of money for middling production. Sure his defense is adequate, but he’s never pulled in more than 8.2 rebounds/game in a season, he’s averaged double figures just once (10.1 points), and he shoots only 61% from the line. This year he’s shooting well from the line at 72%, but has provided little else. 4 points, 6 rebounds, and 44% shooting can be accomplished by any D-League big for one tenth of the cost. Boston got over by unloading him on the Thunder.
The 7.6 million dollar man is the proud owner of an NBA ring, but Mark Cuban should have made him pay for it himself after basically stealing money from the Mavericks all season. Haywood has been a disappointment for years, and his career averages of 7.3 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 59% from the line have been the expectation. It’s quite unfortunate people can get paid that much money to be so woefully ineffective.
Kwame Brown/Andris Biedrins
Want to know why Golden State sucks? Well one of the reasons is that they can use nearly a third of their salary cap allotment on two dead weights. If their “production” is combined, the result is 8.1 points, 10.7 rebounds, 41% from the free throw line, and uninspired defense. What a bargain for $15.75 million! (In all reality it wouldn’t be a comprehensive article on big guys being crappy if there wasn’t a reference to Kwame Brown).