We are currently in a huge transition period for the NBA. New stars like Stephen Curry, Russell Westbrook and James Harden have joined LeBron James and Kevin Durant as the top names over the past few years. The prior era of legends are slowly leaving the league. Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan, Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce have all retired within the past year to truly change the landscape of the league. The majority of All-Stars from a decade ago are gone with new stars in their 20s taking over in the changing of the guard.
There are still some veterans and players past their prime that are on NBA rosters today. Some of them are clearly no longer contributing and need to start planning the next chapter of their lives. Others help their teams by turning back the clock or adding a leadership quality to make it worthwhile. We'll take a look at some names that have been in the NBA for quite some time now. Both sides of the court will be broken down here as we figure out who should stay and who should go. These are eight NBA players that need to go away and seven that we never want to see retire.
15 Go Away: Deron Williams
Basketball fans used to argue about Chris Paul and Deron Williams when it came to who was the best point guard in the NBA. Paul has created a Hall of Fame worthy career and is still an elite Superstar today. Williams has seen the complete opposite play out over the past few years. The Brooklyn Nets traded for Williams and paid him huge money to be the face of the franchise.
14 Never Retire: Dwyane Wade
The talent of Dwyane Wade is dwindling with his days as the best player on a contender no longer viable. Wade however still possesses star power that adds to the overall experience of attending a NBA game. Fans go nuts for Wade and his pure talent will always be able to deliver a memorable play or two. Wade also had the leadership quality that can help contribute on the bench.
13 Go Away: Jason Terry
Jason Terry’s prime years in the NBA saw him play tremendous basketball for the Atlanta Hawks and Dallas Mavericks. Aside from Dirk Nowitzki, Terry was probably the most valuable player on the Mavericks team that defeated the Miami Heat to win the 2011 NBA Championship. The current contributions of Terry are very minimal on the court.
12 Never Retire: Manu Ginobili
Manu Ginobili is someone that has lost most of his skills but still finds a way to impact the game. The San Antonio Spurs guard helped win them four NBA Championships and is still on the roster. Ginobili conserves his minutes during the regular season due to his older age. The sixth man spot does allow him to provide a burst of energy off the bench in the playoffs.
11 Go Away: Mike Miller
Everyone assumed Mike Miller was retiring after winning an NBA Championship with the Miami Heat back in 2012. Miller returned the following season and has kept his career going since then. The three-point shooting and veteran presence of Miller has allowed him to continue playing for the Denver Nuggets. Miller however just doesn’t belong on an NBA court anymore.
10 Never Retire: Joe Johnson
The recent postseason success of Joe Johnson shows his skills have survived the aging process. Johnson will never be a Superstar again, but he has found another way to impact the game. The Utah Jazz defeated the Los Angeles Clippers in their first round playoff series thanks to the fourth quarter dominance of Johnson. “Iso Joe” used his isolation strength to destroy all smaller defenders attempting to stop him.
9 Go Away: Chris Andersen
Chris Andersen is one of the NBA veterans struggling to find a spot in the league. The best run of Andersen’s career came when he played major minutes at the center position for the Miami Heat during two years of the “big three” era. LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and Ray Allen being on the court make it easier for a big man to get by with minimal offense skills.
8 Never Retire: Zach Randolph
The decision to move Zach Randolph to the bench has given him a new life in the NBA. Randolph appeared to have very little left in the tank after years of hard work piling up. Memphis Grizzlies head coach David Fizdale moved Randolph to a role off the bench. The managing of his minutes and being able to have more of an offensive role allows Randolph to be a more effective asset.
7 Go Away: Al Jefferson
Al Jefferson went from one of the best centers in the NBA to someone struggling for playing time in just a few years. The numbers of Jefferson during the 2013-2014 season saw him put up an incredible 21.8 points and 10.8 rebounds per game. Sadly for Jefferson, the NBA has completely changed in the past few years and the traditional center is becoming obsolete.
6 Never Retire: Vince Carter
Vince Carter is currently the oldest player in the NBA and he isn’t planning to retire any time soon. The Memphis Grizzlies saw the 40 year old contribute to the team having a good season. Carter often played the crunch time minutes following the injury to Chandler Parsons shortening his season. Fans were shocked to see Carter still play at a high level.
5 Go Away: Andre Miller
Andre Miller is someone you likely might have assumed retired a few years ago. The veteran point guard has been a very good facilitator throughout his career. Miller is still an active player on the free agent market hoping to continue his NBA career. The San Antonio Spurs signed him last season to be their reserve point guard but no one wanted his services this season.
4 Never Retire: LeBron James
LeBron James is not as old or past his prime as the rest of this list, but he's still getting up there. The fourteen year career of James has seen him average 39 minutes per game. Many would expect a decline or early retirement from someone to play as many important minutes in their career as James. However, the iconic Superstar doesn’t show any signs of slowing down and he's a basketball genius.
3 Go Away: Tony Parker
The current perception of Tony Parker is that he was a Superstar of his time and will be remembered as a San Antonio Spurs legend. Parker may want to retire sooner than later to avoid this being tarnished. The past few seasons have seen Parker take a huge fall between both the aging process catching up to him and the competition getting stronger.
2 Never Retire: Dirk Nowitzki
Basketball fans were ecstatic at the news of Dirk Nowitzki returning for at least one more season next year. Nowitzki is a legend that still contributes to the game. Dallas Mavericks fans will never get sick of him and the rest of us still find entertainment in him. The shooting touch and offensive game of Nowitzki is still impressive enough to belong at the NBA level.
1 Go Away: Metta World Peace
Ron Artest aka Metta World Peace was known as one of the best defenders in the NBA. No one wanted to see him defending them. The clutch play of World Peace on offense helped bring the 2010 NBA Championship to the Los Angeles Lakers. World Peace would see his career go downhill after the peak. The end of the Lakers dominance saw him join the New York Knicks for a horrible run.
World Peace tried his luck leaving the NBA for a basketball career in China. The Lakers convinced him to join the team again but he barely does anything. World Peace primarily sits on the bench helping the young stars progress. The days of Metta being a lockdown defender or successful contributor to a NBA team are over. Maybe it’s time he faces the facts and heads into retirement to start the next career.
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