Since the NBA was created in June of 1946, it has been mostly dominated by big men. The guys who were able to dictate the physicality of the game in the paint by posting big numbers in both rebounds and points. Championship teams were built from the inside out, with a powerful center being the focal point for almost every team. From George Mikan of the Minneapolis Lakers to the likes of Wilt Chamberlain and Shaquille O'Neal, championship teams were blessed by fantastic play from their centers.
Recently, there has been a change of pace in the game of basketball sparking a revolution known as "small ball." Largely in part to Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors, teams are no longer desperate for a dominant center. Another factor leading to the age of small ball is the longevity of big men. For every Tim Duncan and Shaquille O'Neal, there is a Greg Oden or Andrew Bynum that just cannot seem to stay healthy. On the other hand, guards like Curry, Thompson, Paul or Lillard have no problems at all playing 82 games for their club.
On top of all that, the college game is now breeding NBA - ready point guards, whereas most big men just are not polished enough to make a true impact at the Professional level. Knowing that there have been many big men who failed to live up to their predecessors as well as their own college careers, we went back through every team's history to find the worst starting center ever for each team respectively. Note that these centers are being judged on their performance on this team alone and they must have been the primary starter for the majority of the games for at least one season. Here we go.
30 Atlanta Hawks, Jon Koncak, 1985-1995
29 Boston Celtics, Andrew Declercq, 1997-1999
28 Brooklyn Nets, Jim McIlvaine, 1998-2001
27 Charlotte Hornets, Bismack Biyombo, 2011-2013
26 Chicago Bulls, Ben Wallace, 2006-2008
25 Cleveland Cavaliers, Chris Mihm, 2000-2003
24 Dallas Mavericks, Erick Dampier, 2004-2010
23 Denver Nuggets, Dean Garrett, 1997-1998
22 Detroit Pistons, Rick Mahorn, 1985-1989
21 Golden State Warriors, Andris Biedrins, 2004-2013
20 Houston Rockets, Chuck Hayes, 2005-2011
19 Indiana Pacers, Jeff Foster, 2000-2012
18 Los Angeles Clippers, Elmore Spencer, 1992-1995
17 Los Angeles Lakers, Kwame Brown, 2005-2008
The former first overall pick by the Washington Wizards made his way to the Los Angeles Lakers in 2005, starting 91 of the 136 games he appeared in as a Laker. During his tenure in Los Angeles, he averaged 7.4 points and 6.2 total rebounds per game. He shot a miserable 49 percent from the free throw line and added just under 2 turnovers per game. After two and a half years of struggling to perform, Brown was traded away by the Lakers to the Memphis Grizzlies.
16 Memphis Grizzlies, Jake Tsakalidis, 2003-2007
15 Miami Heat, Joel Anthony, 2011-2012
14 Milwaukee Bucks, Joel Przybilla, 2000-2003
13 Minnesota Timberwolves, Felton Spencer, 1990-1994
12 New Orleans Pelicans, Omer Asik, 2014-2015
11 New York Knicks, Othella Harrington, 2002-2003
10 Oklahoma City Thunder, Calvin Booth, 2001-2004
9 Orlando Magic, Greg Kite, 1990-1994
8 Philadelphia 76ers, Scott Williams, 1994-1999
7 Phoenix Suns, Mark West, 1987-1994
6 Portland Trail Blazers, Chris Dudley, 1993-1997
Chris Dudley started in 162 of the 295 games he appeared in as a Portland Trail Blazer. During his time in Portland, he averaged only 4.2 points and 7.4 total rebounds per game. Dudley was a solid rebounder but struggled immensely putting the ball in the hoop. He shot a horrific 48 percent from the free throw line and an equally as bad 42 percent from the field.
5 Sacramento Kings, Duane Causwell, 1990-1997
4 San Antonio Spurs, Fabricio Oberto, 2005-2009
3 Toronto Raptors, Rafael Araujo, 2004-2006
2 Utah Jazz, Adam Keefe, 1997-1998
1 Washington Wizards, Javale McGee, 2008-2012
The former first-round pick by the Washington Wizards was a turnover and technical machine during his tenure in Washington. He started in 148 of the 225 possible games as a Wizard, averaging 8.5 points and 6.0 total rebounds per game. He was an unfortunate foul-line shooter, where he shot only 59 percent. Although his numbers were not too terrible, his major issues came between his ears. McGee has always been labeled as one of the most immature and troubled players in the NBA and is always a problem in the locker room. The Washington Wizards struggled immensely during his tenure which showed as the team never made the playoffs.
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