Basketball is a complicated game and stats rarely tell the whole story. We all love to debate who are the best players in the league, and even more, we love to compare players to past generational stars. Winning is important though and basketball is a team sport played on two ends, scoring 20 points a game isn't the only way to be great. On the other end, winning championships isn't enough either, Mario Chalmers does have two rings as a starting point guard after all.
In the NBA today, there remains a ton of debate as to which stars are overrated. A fair share of people will say LeBron James is overrated, blaming him for his teams' losses in the NBA Finals, when in actuality, his only bad performance in the finals was 2011.
The overrated players on this list saw their names get bigger and bigger because they played on a big market team, they hitched their coattails to stars and won some rings, or put up some big numbers but never really helped the team win. Some people will likely get very upset when they see some names on this list, as there are bound to be some fan favorites. It's time for some cold hard reality though. This list isn't to say they're bad players, just that they shouldn't be as revered as they are. Here are the 15 most overrated players in NBA history.
15 Rajon Rondo
The luckiest late-first round pick ever. When Rondo joined the Celtics all he had to do was get the ball to one of the three future hall-of-famers on his team. People were so impressed with his passing and assist totals, failing to recognize that almost any point guard would get assists passing to KG, Ray and Pierce. Rondo would routinely pass up wide open lay-ups to search out an assist to add to his totals.
14 Charles Barkley
The Round Mound of Rebound was a very unique player. At his height he dominated the boards and the post. But Barkley had many flaws to his game and they held him back from ever winning a ring. He was often out of shape, showing up to camp 20 pounds overweight. It shouldn't as much a surprise if you watch him now as an analyst on TNT, but Barkely wasn't the smartest NBA player, he was never a great passer and teammates often grew tired of his attitude. Defensively he struggled because of his size and his attention to putting all his energy on the other side of the court.
13 Carmelo Anthony
12 Robert Horry
11 Steve Francis
10 Pete Maravich
9 Stephon Marbury
8 Bill Laimbeer
7 Derek Fisher
6 Kevin McHale
5 Vince Carter
4 Reggie Miller
3 Patrick Ewing
2 Wilt Chamberlain
The quintessential numbers aren't everything. Looking at Chamberlain's numbers now seems like a joke; how does someone average 50 points a game for a season? But Chamberlain played a time where his athleticism and size was unmatched, so he could dominate. It's tough to hold it against him but he was often being guarded by someone six inches shorter and 70 pounds lighter. Stats in his day are also confusing to look at, for example in the 1960s teams had about 70 rebounds a game, compared to about 40 now, meaning he had far more opportunities to rack up stats, and the same holds true for scoring numbers.
1 Allen Iverson
This a tough one to say but it's hard to look pass the fact that Iverson was the pinnacle of volume scoring. His efficiency was always below average and it made the offense on his teams struggle to score at a good rate. Iverson was turnover prone, posting close to five a game in some years and shot a lot of threes for a guy who often didn't crack the 30% mark from that range. While his teams did have some success, the 76ers had to construct the team so specifically around Iverson, which was a bunch of defensive studs that could make up for his mistakes on that end while not worrying about their own offense, because with Iverson, he was the only offense.
In the finals against the Lakers it became clear his brand of scoring was never going to win the championship. Iverson was one of the most fun players to watch in his generation but beneath the cornrows and crossovers was a player who was never going to win a ring.
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