The 2013 NBA Draft will go down in history as a very odd one. We haven’t seen many superstars emerge from the draft class yet, but we do have some players that appear to be on the doorstep such as Giannis Antetokounmpo. There have also been a lot of surprising players to make an impact on their teams such as Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, C.J. McCollum, Steven Adams and others.
The amount of role players that the 2013 NBA Draft has produced so far is incredible, but there have also been a ton of busts already, and players that seem that they are well on their way to eventually leaving the NBA without creating much of a legacy. Unfortunately for some of the teams in the draft, they spent some pretty high picks to get next to nothing in return.
Let’s take a look at some of the players from that draft class that already seem to be on their way to having floundering NBA careers, specifically in the draft’s first 35 picks. There are some big names on the list that were superstars in college, but haven’t quite found their footing in the NBA. Here are 15 NBA players that were drafted early in 2013 that already look like they failures.
15 Kelly Olynyk
For the first few players on the list, “failure” might be too harsh of a word depending on who you ask, but we’re using the word in terms of draft position early on. A star at Gonzaga, Kelly Olynyk was drafted 13th overall by the Celtics after posting 17.8 points and 7.3 rebounds per game in his final season with the ‘Zags. Olynyk put up some decent numbers in his rookie season with 70 games played, but those numbers have not improved much since then.
14 Cody Zeller
The Zeller name was a big one in college, as the first two brothers Luke and Tyler attended Notre Dame and North Carolina, respectively. It was thought that the best of the bunch was the youngest, Cody, who made national headlines when he decided to attend Indiana University. The 7 footer was a first-team All-Big Ten player that left the Hoosiers after his sophomore season and was selected 4th overall by the Bobcats.
13 Tim Hardaway, Jr.
If you’re a Michigan basketball fan, you might not want to read the rest of the list since there are a couple of Wolverines that pop up. Tim Hardaway, Jr. followed in his father’s footsteps by attending U of M from 2010 to 2013, helping the team reach the Final Four. Though he wasn’t the most highly touted prospect, name recognition alone made him a big name in college and he definitely delivered.
12 Ben McLemore
Kansas is always a basketball powerhouse and they are able to snag some pretty big recruits. One of those big gets was Ben McLemore, who was the 34th prospect in the country. McLemore’s Kansas career got off to a shaky start thanks to some transcript issues, but he had a decent impact for the Jayhawks when he finally debuted, scoring 15.9 points per game with 5.2 rebounds. McLemore left after his freshman season and was selected seventh overall by the Sacramento Kings.
11 Trey Burke
Our second Michigan alum on the list is one was the straw that stirred the drink for the Wolverines when he played in Ann Arbor for two seasons, reaching the Final Four and being named the Big Ten Player of the Year. The former Ohio Mr. Basketball achieved star status and was then selected ninth overall by the Utah Jazz in 2013. That first year for Burke was a very promising one, as he scored 12.8 points per game, dished out 5.7 assists and hauled in 3.0 rebounds, making the First All-Rookie Team.
10 Tony Snell
The New Mexico Lobos don’t get a lot of love despite having a fairly rich basketball history, and they have actually produced some solid players including Mel Daniels and Danny Granger. One former Lobo that tried to join the ranks was Tony Snell, who departed from New Mexico after his junior season after leading the team to a Mountain West Conference title. Snell was drafted 20th overall by the Bulls, a squad that he is still with today.
9 Shane Larkin
Much like Tim Hardaway, Jr., Shane Larkin already had a lot of name recognition before reaching the college basketball ranks. That’s because Larkin’s father is Cincinnati Reds legend Barry Larkin. After quitting baseball, Larkin focused on hopps and was a standout in high school, committing to DePaul before transferring to Miami (FL). Larkin led the Hurricanes to the Sweet 16 in his sophomore season, deciding to leave afterward to be drafted 18th overall by the Atlanta Hawks and then getting swapped to the Mavericks.
8 Reggie Bullock
Reggie Bullock was one of the best shooting guards coming out of high school in 2010 and had offers from all of the blue chip basketball schools before deciding to attend North Carolina. Bullock became the team’s leading scorer during his junior season in 2013 and it led to him being selected 25th overall by the Clippers. Bullock found the starting lineup just twice in his first two seasons in Los Angeles and his numbers barely registered on the radar.
7 Lucas Nogueira
You never really know what you’re getting when you draft a foreign player in the NBA, but a lot of teams like to take the chance. Hailing from Brazil, 7’0” center Lucas Nogueira was another one of those players that American fans didn’t know much about. The Boston Celtics selected Nogueira 16th overall in 2013 and he had his draft rights traded to the Atlanta Hawks. After a season of not playing in the league thanks to his foreign commitments, Nogueira was traded again to the Raptors.
6 Glen Rice, Jr.
We meet yet another player that had a lot of name recognition, and this time it’s Glen Rice, Jr., the son of former Michigan player Glen Rice, Sr. that led the Wolverines to the 1989 National Championship. Instead of heading to Michigan and joining Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway, Jr., Rice joined Georgia Tech, and he was drafted 35th overall by the Philadelphia 76ers, but made his debut in his rookie season with the Washington Wizards.
5 Solomon Hill
One of just two Americans left on the list, Solomon Hill was the third ranked small forward out of high school in 2009 and declared to the University of Arizona. Hill spent all four of his eligible years with the Wildcats and was a member of the All Pac-12 First Team in his senior season. With the 23rd overall pick, the Pacers selected Hill and assigned him to the D-League’s Fort Wayne Mad Ants.
4 Livio Jean-Charles
Here is a name that you probably completely forgot about. Livio Jean-Charles was already playing professional basketball in France as a member of the NM1 League and then ASVEL with LNB Pro A. After being a standout at the Nike Hoop Summit, Jean-Charles was picked up with the 28th selection by San Antonio. Instead of making his way to the United States, Jean-Charles stuck around in France with ASVEL and has played four seasons with the team so far.
3 Nemanja Nedovic
We go from France to Serbia now for a player that was once dubbed as “The European Derrick Rose,” Nemanja Nedovic. Nedovic had all of the physical tools at 6’3” and 190 pounds and played professionally in Europe with Crvena zvezda and Lietuvos rytas. On draft night in 2013, Nedovic was selected 30th overall by the Phoenix Suns and was then shipped to the Golden State Warriors later that night.
2 Sergey Karasev
Our final foreign born player on the list was the fourth one selected (19th overall) in the 2013 NBA Draft after Giannis Antetokounmpo, Lucas Nogueira and Dennis Schroder. Karasev was coming off of a career with Triumph Lyubertsy where he was a standout, and it was the Cavaliers that scooped him up off of the draft board. Karasev, a Russian, has mostly been a D-League option so far in his career.
1 Anthony Bennett
Without a doubt, the career that looks like it has become the most doomed from the 2013 NBA Draft class belongs to Anthony Bennett. When the UNLV product was selected first overall by the Cleveland Cavaliers, a lot of people were scratching their heads with some calling it the most confusing number one pick in NBA history. The critics would end up being proved right almost instantly as Bennett floundered in his rookie year with just 4.2 points and 3.0 rebounds per game.
The numbers would improve when Bennett was traded to Minnesota in the Kevin Love deal, but not by much as he scored just 5.2 points and hauled in 3.8 rebounds per game. Bennett’s tenure in Minnesota would end after just one season, and he was a member of the Toronto Raptors for the 2015-16 season. There, Bennett put up career lows in numbers, playing just 19 games and has now been given yet another chance with Brooklyn, his fourth team in as many years.
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