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Top 25 NBA Players That Should Have Been Better Than They Were

Whenever NBA teams draft a NBA player, a major factor for drafting a player is based upon their future potential. The lower the ceiling, the more they drop in the draft, and the higher their ceiling, the more they climb in the draft. Unfortunately, just because a player has a lot of potential, it does not mean they can actually reach it. In fact, even the players that do succeed in the NBA, do not necessarily reach their maximum potential.

Take Rasheed Wallace for example. By all accounts, Sheed had a great career. He played 18 long years in the NBA. But when you think about the amount of skills that he possessed, Sheed should not have been a mere All Star, but a shoe-in Hall of Famer and the best power forward to ever play the game. Sheed was a hybrid of two of the best power forwards to ever play the game in his generation – Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett. Sheed possessed the post game of Tim Duncan and had the 3-point shot that Kevin Garnett failed to even developed.

Yet, he only averaged 20.0 points per game for 1 out of the 18 seasons he was in the NBA and only averaged 14.4 points per game for his entire career. He also never averaged more than 8.2 rebounds per game or 2 blocks per game. But he was always able to give Duncan and Garnett fits whenever he went up against them. Sheed was a good player by all accounts, but he was never quite a great player. The following is a list of players that were talented like Sheed, but were never able to fully optimize the potential that they had.

24 25. J.R. Rider

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23 24. Andrei Kirilenko

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22 23. Ricky Davis

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21 22. Steve Francis

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20 21. Darko Milicic

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19 20. Sam Bowie

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18 19. Jason Williams

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17 18. Stephon Marbury

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16 17. Glenn Robinson

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15 16. Amar’e Stoudemire

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via foxsports.com

14 14. Christian Laettner

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13 13. Rudy Gay

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12 12. Michael Olowokandi

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11 11. Jason Richardson

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10 10. Corey Maggette

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9 9. Joe Smith

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8 8. Larry Johnson

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7 7. Allan Houston

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6 6. Yao Ming

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5 5. Baron Davis

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4 4. Grant Hill

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3 3. Vince Carter

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2 2. Penny Hardaway

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1 1. Lamar Odom

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Lamar Odom played center for Team USA in the World Games one year. That is how talented this small forward/power forward/center was. He was long, left-handed, and could even play defense. But his off the court problems and outside interests really prevented him from becoming a perennial All Star. I would venture to say that Odom was so talented that he could have become a borderline Hall of Famer if he had more accountability and Kobe as his teammate for his entire career.

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Top 25 NBA Players That Should Have Been Better Than They Were