The NBA Un-Drafted: Hoops Zombies in Limbo
For whatever reason, the tragedy of basketball is the extent that ego has overtaken the game itself.
Maybe this is due to the obvious fact that it's easier for one player to take over when only five at a time are out there. Maybe it's because then-Commish Lawrence O'Brien decided the only way to get the NBA off late-night TV was to feature personalities over team logos.
Or maybe it's because there are just too many damn posses leeching off kids who are too young to understand reality.
Some can't-miss draft busts are lucky an NBA team defies logic and falls for the hype, netting them a few salad seasons. But when subpar performances finally expose them, their continuing self-denial adds a subcurrent of surreal humor to situational interviews like this:
Now that the 2014 NBA Draft is history, so are these have-nots:
|- William Alston, freshman, F, Baltimore County Dundalk CC|
|- Chane Behanan, junior, F, Louisville|
|- Sim Bhullar, sophomore, C, New Mexico State|
|- Khem Birch, junior, F, UNLV|
|- Jabari Brown, junior, G, Missouri|
|- Jahii Carson, sophomore, G, Arizona State|
|- Alex Kirk, junior, C, New Mexico|
|- James Michael McAdoo, junior, F, North Carolina|
|- Eric Moreland, junior, F, Oregon State|
|- LaQuinton Ross, junior, F, Ohio State|
|- Antonio Rucker, sophomore, G, Clinton JC (South Carolina)|
|- JaKarr Sampson, sophomore, F, St. John's|
|- Roscoe Smith, junior, F, UNLV|
|- Ta'Quan Zimmerman, junior, G, Thompson Rivers (Kamloops BC)|
There are enough cautionary tales in those links to warn off underclass hopefuls for seasons to come. But they won't. Never have. Too many rose-colored glasses handed out by hangers-on, and the kids just won't put them down. For example:
- Not even the combination of daddy's name and a glamor school could hide McAdoo's flaws as an average 'tweener.
- Really, what has Carson done as a Sun Devil? Besides underwhelm, that is. Get a jumper, dude.
- A season under new Beaver coach Wayne Tinkle -- a well-regarded developer of bigs -- would've done Moreland and his bank book a world of good; he still treats the offensive end as alien territory.
- And Sim Bhullar? Sim Bhullar? The CN Tower with appendages who moves like the actual CN Tower and not a step faster? If fellow Canadian Jordan Bachynski wasn't going to get drafted, what was Bhullar thinking? Maybe some day, but not to-day. Pravda in its heyday couldn't have done any better with this video clip, but still, no. Just no:
Someone somewhere will sign Bhullar for a song, for gate attraction purposes if nothing else. And someday, who knows? He may develop enough to get a sniff at the NBA. But it's a speedy league where even bigs require stamina.
So for now, he'll join the others on the list and hope for a free-agent contract or a stint in the D-League. However, it's likely he'll follow most of them to some god-forsaken Night of the Living Deadistan, continuing to fool themselves like Telfair but doing so with a lot less money.