Top 15 NBA Stars on the Decline

One of the harshest realities in sports is that an athlete can just lose it at any time. Whether it's injuries, old age or pure regression, even the greatest athletes start to lose it and that’s no different in the NBA. Many of the future Hall of Fame stars in the NBA right now are getting older and while most of them are still very productive, they’re clearly on the decline as they play out the final years of their careers. Most members on the list are of this variety but there are many other reasons for the decline many are facing.

Some players today have a poor attitude. That can mean they don’t get along well with others, they refuse to take coaching guidance or they’re just flat out selfish. This type of NBA star can get by on his talent in the early days of his career as young players are expected to have ups and downs with growing pains as they enter a league of men while they are basically boys. The problem occurs if the player is unwilling to mature, then his attitude may sink his talent and he’ll regress until no longer relevant, like you will see with some NBA stars selected here.

Injuries are also troublesome as if your body breaks down, as there’s just no way even pure heart can overcome with such an elite level of talent in the NBA today. The wrong injury could damage a career and force a player to decline. It’s important to note that while this list is looking at players who are on the decline, most of them are still very talented. It’s just the order of the NBA that some players are starting to lose what made them special and take a few steps down away from the greatness we are accustomed to seeing from them.

15 Kevin Garnett

Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

14 Zach Randolph

Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

13 Tim Duncan

Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

12 Joe Johnson

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

11 Dirk Nowitzki

Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

10 Luol Deng

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

9 Derrick Rose

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

8 Paul Pierce

Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

7 Josh Smith

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

6 Dwyane Wade

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

5 Carmelo Anthony

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

4 Kobe Bryant

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

3 Tony Parker

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

2 Joakim Noah

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

1 Rajon Rondo

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

Not only is Rajon Rondo on the decline among former NBA stars reverting back to the average but he’s become so bad that he may be forced out of the league if he doesn’t turn this around soon. Many of us felt Rondo looked average after the Boston Celtics traded Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce because he had no help around him and he always played better in big games which would harm his results on a poor team. Well, Rondo was traded to the Dallas Mavericks, a team good enough to contend for a title last year if he lived up to his billing but his presence completely killed the team. It was clear Rondo no longer had “it” and this season could become uglier on a dysfunctional Sacramento Kings team.

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Top 15 NBA Stars on the Decline