2013 saw a number of NBA teams make moves to improve their rosters. Whether they made a
large-scale trade or took a gamble in the NBA Draft, these organizations hoped to add personnel
who would help take their team to the playoffs.
While some teams found players who immediately came in and made an impact, some coaches
and general managers have been disappointed with the performance of their acquisitions.
Some of them are just so happy with having so much money they could even go to private and
exclusive rehab if they needed to. Below is a list of three players who have disappointed their
new teams so far this season.
1. Anthony Bennett
One of the most high-profile disappointments of the season has been the play of Anthony
Bennett, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2013 NBA Draft. The Cleveland Cavaliers took Bennett
with the hopes of inserting the forward into their starting lineup alongside Kyrie Irving and Dion
Waiters. Offering great size and athleticism, Bennett seemed like an excellent boost to the Cavs lineup.
Sadly for Cavs fans, this has not been the case, as Bennett’s transition to the NBA has been
anything but smooth. So far this season, Bennett is averaging just 2.4 points, 2.0 rebounds
and 0.3 assists per game, according to ESPN. This abysmal stat line is subpar compared to
many of the other rookies who were drafted behind Bennett during the first round. Reduced to
just 10 minutes of play per game for the Cavs, Bennett certainly represents one of the biggest
disappointments of the season.
2. Andrew Bynum
Another name that has been in the news for the wrong reasons is Andrew Bynum. Once again,
the Cavs are the team that’s suffering as they took a risk on Bynum this offseason. Cleveland
agreed to a two-year, $24 million deal for the 7-foot center in what stands as a risky move that
has yet to pan out. Bynum came to the Cavs after sitting out the entire previous season due to
injury and was by no means a guarantee in terms of returning to playing form.
Despite Bynum’s progressing recovery, the center’s health issues are no longer the Cavs’ main
concern. This past week the Cavs organization suspended Bynum indefinitely for conduct that is
detrimental to the locker room, as cited by ESPN. It was later revealed that the conduct referred
to involved Bynum’s lack of motivation and lack of interest in playing. While Bynum’s averages
of 8.4 points and 5.3 rebounds aren’t terrible, they are far below expectations for the former
all-star. Also, the limited number of games he has played this season is a big blow to the Cavs
financially considering the large nature of his contract.
3. O.J. Mayo
The Milwaukee Bucks acquired Mayo after trading away star players Monte Ellis and Brandon
Jennings during the offseason. The Bucks were looking for Mayo to offer consistent backcourt
scoring and to alleviate the imbalance that their previous backcourt offered, as discussed by
Bleacher Report. This appeared to be a positive move from Mayo’s perspective as he would be
able to serve as the top option in the Buck’s rotation.
So far this match hasn’t panned out for either party as the Bucks are currently 6-24 while Mayo
is averaging just 14.0 points per game on 40 percent shooting. This is a far cry from what was
expected given Mayo’s previous season and new $8 million contract.
Given the resources that the aforementioned teams have invested in these players, it is no
surprise that frustration is abundant in each organization. Cavaliers and Bucks fans will hope that
these players will turn it around in the second half of the season and reward their team’s trust in
Scott Huntington is a writer, blogger, and long-time sports fan. When he’s not watching
sports, he’s doing research for Maxwell Systems or spending time outside with his family. Follow
Scott at @SMHuntington or check out his blog, blogspike.com