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Who are the most overpaid players in the NBA?

Jul 5, 2011, 11:46 PM EDT


With the NBA locked out because the owners aren’t making any (or enough) money? Who are the worst contracts in the NBA? Who are the guys we can blame for this mess?

Well, we should blame the general managers and owners who gave out these contracts.

But who have the worst contracts in the NBA? Over at the Wages of Wins blog — based on the NBA stats of Dave Berri, author of Wages of Wins — they took a crack at it. They figured the cost of an NBA win ($1.58 million, which is total salary paid by the league divided by wins) then used their “wins produced” stat to figure out how much people contributed. (I have issues with wins produced, but it still makes for an interesting discussion.)

Here are the top three:

1. Michael Redd (Milwaukee). He made $18.3 million and played just 134 minutes due to injury. This is a case of a max contract going bad that the owners can point to as why they want shorter deals and buyouts. The Bucks offered him a six-year max deal starting at $12 million a season in 2005, when he was regarded as maybe the best pure shooter in the game. That next season he averaged 23.3 points per game and shot 39.5 percent from three, and while we can debate if he really deserved max money the guy was a very good player and just 26 years old. Knee injuries undid him and he has never been quite the same, playing just 61 games total the last three years of that deal.

2. Andrea Bargnani (Toronto). I have a problem with this one. No doubt Bargnani is overpaid at $8.5 million last season and he gives the Raptors poor defense and poor rebounding, plus he doesn’t get to the line enough. But the guy scored 21.4 points per game and had an above average PER. I’m not a fan of defending him because he is overpaid, but not one of the most overpaid in the league.

3. Yao Ming (Houston). He made $17.7 million last season but played just five games due to injury. Which was five more than he played last season. Another case where the owners would like to argue for shorter contracts of having buyouts so that seriously injured players don’t to keep pulling in massive contracts.

The rest of the top 10 are Gilbert Arenas (he should be higher up than Bargnani), Antawn Jamison, Brandon Roy, Kenyon Martin, Richard Hamilton, Nick Collison and Ben Gordon

  1. bittersonicsfan - Jul 6, 2011 at 2:32 AM

    I’d say Collison is under used, not over paid. The guy is a fundamental beast. He was the only one on Oklahoma that even bothered Nowitzki. You know how it goes: if you do things the right way, people won’t know if you did anything at all.

  2. royistheboy - Jul 6, 2011 at 5:09 AM

    Just cause you don’t actually play doesn’t mean you’re not overpaid, Mr. Eddy Curry

  3. ac0117 - Jul 6, 2011 at 7:56 AM

    Gilbert Arenas is going to be making $20 million a year for the next three years. The fact that he wasn’t number one with Rashard Lewis number 2 tipped me off even before looking that Kurt Helin wrote this article.

    • ac0117 - Jul 6, 2011 at 7:57 AM

      nvm I can’t read.. still a dumb article tho

  4. fx1718 - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:28 AM

    How is Joe Johnson not on this list?

    • icu84bs - Jul 6, 2011 at 6:00 PM

      Joe Johnson checked in at #16 on Arturo’s list.

  5. bignick1063 - Jul 6, 2011 at 9:50 AM

    What drives me crazy about high player salaries and now a lock out is that no one is forcing the owners to sign players to these contracts. The only guys who deserve max money are the ones who are so good that they can bring you a chance at a championship (Kobe, LaBron, Wade, Howard, Nowitzki, Paul, Durant, D-Will) or players who actually bring in fans (Stat., Melo, Griffin). The owners are businessmen who have been successful in other fields. They should be able to judge what value a player really brings to a team. Instead, they make stupid mistakes over and over again and then say the system needs to be changed. All I can think of is the old saying, “protect me from myself”. If the owners made better decisions, we would not be in the situation we are now in.

  6. chitownjeff - Jul 6, 2011 at 11:12 AM

    Vince Carter and Tracy McGrady should be the team captains of the competing over priced all star game..

  7. dysraw1 - Jul 6, 2011 at 11:50 AM

    The greedy owners are the ones who turn the league into a circus trying to latch onto the next mcgrady or carter

  8. r0llinginthedeep - Jul 6, 2011 at 2:25 PM

    Charlie Villanueva, Luke Walton, Travis Outlaw, TJ Ford, Mike Dunleavy Jr., James Posey, Rashard Lewis, Matt Carroll, DeSagna Diop, Vladimir Radmanovic, Josh Childress, Darko Milicic, Mehmet Okur…

    Now for various reasons these guys are overpaid (some were injured, some were simply awful) but my god, every single one of them is overpaid compared to Bargnani, Collison and maybe even Brandon Roy (at least Roy was still able to give Portland some valuable minutes + one all-time great playoff game). I really don’t think the people who constructed this list watched much basketball last year. You can’t honestly tell me that you’d rather have TJ Ford @ $8.5mil, Mike Dunleavy @ $10.5mil, Rashard Lewis @ $19.5mil etc. Over Andrea Bargnani @ $8.55mil? Or even over Nick Collison (The sole reason why OKC got past Memphis, and again the sole reason why they weren’t swept by Dallas).

    Shame on the people who wrote it, and shame on PBT for actually posting this trash willingly on their site.

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