Welcome to the tenth installment of 30 Teams, 30 Years, 30 Drafts featuring the Washington Wizards, formerly the Washington Bullets. This series takes you through each of the teams’ draft picks from 1978-2008 and evaluates how they fared. The Bullets/Wizards drafted both the shortest player in NBA history, Muggsy Bogues as well as the tallest one in Gheorghe Muresan.
Total Score: 2.359
View the previous teams and their scores here:
Boston Celtics – 3.885
Philadelphia 76ers – 2.561
Toronto Raptors – 2.659
Orlando Magic – 2.861
Charlotte Bobcats – 2.225
New York Knicks – 2.471
New Jersey Nets – 2.49
Atlanta Hawks – 1.258
Miami Heat – 2.743
Milwaukee Bucks – 3.616
Chicago Bulls - 2.93
Cleveland Cavaliers – 3.176
Indiana Pacers – 2.762
Let us know in the comments below who you think their best and worst draft picks were.
To see how the score was calculated, check out the intro post here.
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1- Joe decided to play in Italy instead of joining the NBA. He ended up finishing his career with the Maine Lumberjacks of the CBA. While none of this is especially interesting, I just love the fact that there was a team name the Lumberjacks.
2- Drafted over Kelly Tripuka
3- His full name is Steven Rodney Lingenfelter. I’m not quite sure this is the whitest name in NBA in history, but it definitely has to rank up there.
4- When looking up Michael Britt on wikipedia I was redirected to the page for Lonestar. I’m going to guess these aren’t the same people.
5- Not only did Kenny not manage to acquire 100 games as a first round pick, he was also drafted ahead of Hall of Famer Karl Malone.
6- I know I did not have a category for it in the intro, but Manute brought a skill to the table that has been unmatched since they started keeping track of blocks as a stat. So much so that he averaged 8.6 blocks per 48 minutes, second on that list is a full 3 blocks below. He is also the only player in NBA history to have more blocked shots than points. Manute passed away in June of 2010 due to acute kidney failure. RIP Manute.
7- Muggsy as most know is the shortest player ever to play in the NBA at only 5’3”, which is short even by normal people standards. In my mind though his greatest achievement was appearing in the movie “Space Jam”. He was one of the 5 players who had their talents stolen by the MonStars along with Patrick Ewing, Larry Johnson, Shawn Bradley and Charles Barkley. Now that I really think of it, it is not really that farfetched to believe a team with Jordan, Bill Murray and a bunch of Looney Toons were able to beat the MonStars.
8- Duane Washington is the older brother of Derek Fisher. I know it’s hard to imagine anything being older than Derek Fisher.
9- Tom had a near death experience in 1999. While on the team bus he took a substance that was marked as a sleep aid which included furanon di-hydro. While talking with his wife he passed out, she proceeded to get in touch with Rex Chapman who found the medicine and informed doctors of what he took so that they could administer the proper antidote.
10- Gheorghe holds the distinction of being the tallest player in NBA History. Actually at 7’7” he is tied with the player the Bullets drafted only 8 years earlier, Manute Bol. You may also remember him from the movie “My Giant” with Billy Chrystal and as the giant ventriloquist from Eminem’s “My Name Is” video.
11- Conrad played all around Europe before finally signing a 10 day contract with the Nuggets in 1999. However it was terminated after he fainted in practice. Tragically this was a foreshadowing of a future as Conrad would pass away in 2000 after collapsing during springs with the Orlando Magic. RIP Conrad.
12- McIlvaine is more remembered in NBA History for being partly responsible for the bucket of crazy that became Shawn Kemp. Well, it’s unfair to say he was responsible; he just took what he was given. Seattle offered Jim a massive contract (at the time) while not giving Kemp the pay raise he so much deserved. Many believe this is what led to Kemp’s mental decline
13- God Shammgod may have the greatest name in the history of the NBA. It is actually his legal name. In high school he played under the name Shammgod Wells, but was forced to play under his given name in college at Providence because he could not afford to have it legally changed. He led that Providence team to the Elite 8 in 1997 as a 10 seed. They lost to eventual champion Arizona.
14- Kwame Brown IS the worst number one overall pick of the last 30 years. You may want to tell me Greg Oden was, but Greg Oden was an injury travesty. Kwame Brown was just flat out awful from day one. Especially when you consider the two big men drafted immediately after him were Pau Gasol and Tyson Chandler.
15- It’s really hard to give Juan Carlos zero points. He did well in his first NBA season and returned to Europe where he has had an unbelievably successful European career. But rules are rules and Juan Carlos made his choice, he’s happier playing near home.
16- Dominic’s score was tough for me. He’s been an NBA journeyman for five years with stops in four cities. Over that time he has managed to end up with 316 games and 74 starts. It’s not crazy to see him getting to 400 games, 100 starts, or stay at the 200+ game mark. I decided to split the difference and give him credit for 400 games.
17- JaVale is one of the more “unique” individuals of the NBA. He’s taken advantage of this reputation to play tricks on his fans. Once he posted a picture of two baby platypuses and claimed that he had adopted him as pets. Given his eccentric behavior his twitter followers were inclined to believe him until he later posted that it was a joke. JaVale also has a tattoo of a mustache on his finger as to put true meaning to the term fingerstache. I could go on all day about the hilarity that is JaVale Mcgee, so let’s just move on before I do.