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Hasheem Thabeet agrees to deal, will come off Thunder bench

Jul 6, 2012, 8:40 AM EDT

hasheem thabeet

When you think Hasheem Thabeet, you think bust. Harsh, but let’s be honest. He’s the former No. 2 overall pick of the Grizzlies (taken in front of James Harden, Ricky Rubio and Stephen Curry) who has struggled the last two seasons to get on the court for some pretty unimpressive teams (Houston, Portland late in this past season).

But he’s getting another chance, a one-year deal in a place a lot of established NBA players want to be — Oklahoma City. Why? Because he’s 7’3”. Marc Spears of Yahoo Sports broke the story.

This is actually a good move for the Thunder. The got him for a minimum deal and they don’t need him — he is on the bench behind Kendrick Perkins, Serge Ibaka and Nick Collison. If he doesn’t improve and take a step forward, he never gets off the bench.

But if he does — if he can be a good defensive stopper in the paint and grab some boards, if he can score just a little — than the Thunder have a steal. This guy has potential, he didn’t go No. 2 overall because the Grizzlies ate the special brownies in the draft green room, there were a lot of teams interested in him because of what he could develop into. Some guys develop late. That is what the Thunder are hoping for.

Thabeet can’t sign until July 11.

  1. tomtravis76 - Jul 6, 2012 at 9:04 AM

    I really thought he was going to be a player in the league. He dominated at UConn. He has one of those disney type stories about how he got out of Africa. I would say its on the player for not working on his game. He might be the biggest “bust” in NBA draft history.

  2. rocketsbb - Jul 6, 2012 at 9:15 AM

    Any number 2 pick that’s a 7″3 center has potential. Thabeet needs to work on his post game and learn to utilize his size defensively. The thunder could use a big guy and thabeet may get his chance to prove he’s not a bust.

  3. bparmalee - Jul 6, 2012 at 9:29 AM

    At this point just being able to come off a NBA bench is optimistic. He didn’t dominate in college and hasn’t really shown anything in the NBA. The signs were there in college….. how many times did you see him get rooted out of the post by 6’4″ players in college?? I hope he turns it around so my kid will understand why I named his parrot Hasheem Thabeak (true story).

  4. thestudiokida - Jul 6, 2012 at 9:37 AM

    “Bust” is to give Thabeet too much credit. He’s more akin to a dying star, imploding on itself and becoming a black hole with no height, width or length… just gravity sucking everything else into it.

    He averaged 3 points, 3 rebounds and 1 block in his only season with the team who drafted him. I don’t care if he averages 30-20-10 at some point in his career; when you put up those awful numbers for the team who drafted you #2 then you are a disgrace and a bust.

  5. tomtravis76 - Jul 6, 2012 at 9:46 AM

    His final season with the Huskies he went 13pts, 10reb & 4 blocks per. Not too shabby, but dominate could be too strong of a word for the performance. He was a real presence in college basketball which I thought would translate into him developing his game to become a much better player. I do think it must come back to his personal work ethic in becoming a better player. Maybe OKC and the big men will help him be a better pro, but damn you would think working with McHale he would have picked up some low post moves.

  6. toegoat - Jul 6, 2012 at 10:09 AM

    He’s too weak, I remember him getting owned by dejuan Blair in college who’s like 6’7″.

  7. rajbais - Jul 6, 2012 at 10:11 AM

    The biggest bust ever!!!

    He’s literally worse than Kwame Brown!!!

    See their year-to-year stats and you’ll agree with me!!!

    I never felt that he was a lottery pick. He didn’t score enough in an average 33 minutes. Plus, it took him too long to barely be a capable enough of a scorer in college. During his freshman and sophomore years for a player with his playing time he was a bad scorer!!!

    If you enter the draft as a junior and you don’t score at your best in a prior season or two you have no proof of long term NBA success.

    Look at Roy Hibbert. He was thought to be the #1 overall pick after his sophomore year and played better or as good as a junior, but was unfairly picked later without hindsight.

    The more you do in a game and if done often the better you are in the pro’s.

    Hasheem Thabeet = Giraffe!!!

  8. pastortodd78 - Jul 6, 2012 at 10:13 AM

    Hasheem Thabeet biggest bust ever?!?!? I have two words to respond to that ridiculousness – Kwame Brown

    I am not saying Thabeet isn’t a bust. So far he is. But he not in Kwame territory. The only other one in Kwame’s bust galaxy is Darko.

    • willsolo - Jul 6, 2012 at 6:19 PM

      See Exhibit A: Olawakandi, Michael

    • rajbais - Jul 6, 2012 at 9:14 PM

      Buddy, Kwame Brown averaged over 10 pts and 7 boards in 2004. That’s a hell of a lot better than whatever Thabeet. will ever do. Thabeet was so bad he went to the D-league in his rookie year after being the second overall pick!!!

      Plus, if Seth Davis brings up a fair point that those who used to play handball in countires like Africa have a difficult time transitioning to the NBA, has been on at least three teams since 2010, and never even got his fourth year option exercised by his team before his 3rd year he’s too difficult to salvage!!!

      Look at all of the players that had their fourth year team options nullified before the 3rd year during their rookie contracts: Nikoloz Skitishvili, Yaroslav Karolev (ex-Clipper), Earl Clark, etc. They all have failed based on their draft positions!!!

      They were so bad no team was willing to predict the future, mindlessly and prematurely anoint them as roster worthy players!!! The 3rd year option is exercised before year number 2 and the 4th year is exercise before year number 3!!! Doing that is actually risky because that is pretty much saying you know what you will get two seasons from now unlike free agency where good free agents who come off a productive year look more like realistically good fits in year one because they have “the hot hands” or are creating building blocks to more productive futures!!!

  9. pastortodd78 - Jul 6, 2012 at 10:17 AM

    Hasheem Thabeet the biggest draft bust ever?!?!? I have two words for that stupid statement – Kwame Brown.

    Now I am not saying Hasheem is not a bust, but he is not in the same galaxy as Kwame yet, no one not named Darko resides there with Kwame.

    • rajbais - Jul 6, 2012 at 9:33 PM

      You are dumb!! Kwame Brown is an example for why high school players are banned from the NBA!!!

      They are not banning college juniors and if you come out as a junior you should be more prepared!!! That is why he is worse than Kwamé Brown!!!

      He only had one decent year and if you just have one good scoring year is not really that great because you’re not doing it consistently enough. Look at Roy Hibbert!!! When you are just a one-year wonder, but you are not either a freshman or sophomore you didn’t really dominate!!! Plus his rebounding should’ve been better!!!

      I saw the NBA drafts from decades ago and they did not come out like Thabeet!!! Study the thing year-to-year dating back to the 1980s and you will know what real talent is!!! Potential is a garbage word and it’s not really doing homework!!! Potential valuing with no definitive enough proof equals paranoia and if you are mentally incompetent at scouting you should get out!!!

      Plus, many of the best general managers in NBA history were ex-coaches. I bring this up because they know how two-phase different kinds of players into games. Look at Red Auerbach, Jerry West, Pat Riley in Miami, and Gregg Popovich was an assistant coach before becoming the Spurs’ general manager. As the general manager he got Spurs to win 62 games in 1995 with Bob Hill as the head coach. By the way, look at Mitch Kupchak and Jerry Krause without Phil Jackson!!! Particularly Jerry Krause because he elected to do so many stupid things and when you choose to do stupid things unnecessarily you do not deserve to be in the Hall of Fame!!!

      • pastortodd78 - Jul 8, 2012 at 10:31 AM

        Lame verbal attacks on a sports blog. Wow! Big tough guy there are ya?

        Look bro, I don’t care if you have a different opinion, and want to voice that vociferously even, but do it without calling others dumb or stupid.

        If you want people to take you more seriously, actually make sense in your comments. Your rabbit chasing rant about potential and ex coaches and GM’s makes little sense in context.

        As for Thabeet vs. Kwame you can throw out all the stats you want, but you are forgetting one big thing; expectations. Do judge how much of a bust someone is, you have to look at expectations. Kwame Brown was seen as a franchise altering player. Thabeet has never been viewed as that. The weight of going number 1 is so immensely greater than number 2, that you have to factor that into the discussion and not just stats alone.

        Have a good day.

    • rajbais - Jul 9, 2012 at 1:35 AM

      One more thing, the selection is not about hype!!!! That’s done by the media!!!!

      It’s about the caliber of the player!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Pick #2 should NOT be THAT different from #1!!!!!!!!!!!!


  10. heat256 - Jul 6, 2012 at 10:50 AM

    Just goes to show if you are 7’0″ and have a pulse and at least 1 finger on each hand, you will be on an NBA roster.

  11. brianjoates - Jul 6, 2012 at 11:07 AM

    Kwame was the worst overall number 1 pick, but he has not had a terrible career for an NBA journey man. Awful for a number 1 pick. I would take the title of bust away from him.

    Darko also has pulled it together to be a solid NBA vet for the Wolves. He has stayed in the league.

    Thabeet maybe over time will be a contributor in this league, but for now he has the title of NBA’s biggest bust draft pick.

    The league should really start developing the D league( first by changing its name, D makes you think just above failing). Every franchise should have a minor league team. It will make the NBA better when these guys have the opportunity to develop as a pro in an organizations system.

    • rajbais - Jul 6, 2012 at 11:40 PM

      “Thabeet maybe over time will be a contributor in this league.” … Ugh! Remotely there’s a chance! 1 out of a million!

      “but for now he has the title of NBA’s biggest bust draft pick.” … 1000% accurate!

  12. poohman1975 - Jul 6, 2012 at 11:25 AM

    Some of you need to step your game up. How about Michael Olowakandi?(probably didn’t spell that right)Who is that? Exactly. Greg Oden is still a bust. Sam Bowie. All these guys were # 1 overall.

  13. brianjoates - Jul 6, 2012 at 11:45 AM

    Candy man was pretty terrible for a number 1 pick. He went 98 to 07- 8pts,6rbs,1 block per in his career. I can’t put Oden in bust because inujuries are his problem, not his game. Bowie was #2 pick( Dream, Bowie, MJ).

  14. flyrocket31 - Jul 6, 2012 at 3:30 PM

    He gets paid to workout and has all the utilities and personnel to help him develop any aspect of his game. How do you not develop anything in three years when your’e getting paid to play basketball and thats all and workout.

  15. svupper - Jul 6, 2012 at 6:11 PM

    I dont get the wholse he’s a bigger bust than Kwame Brown, first of Kwame was the 1st pick and second, it aint Thabeet’s fault that Grizzlies and reached by taking him 2nd, and then just gave up on him, they’re a horrible team when it comes to new players, just look at them, Thebeet, OJ Mayo, Xavier Henry and Josh Selby.. I had high hopes for Wroten, but when he was draftet by Memphis i knew he’s NBA carrier was over even before it started.

    Just face it, Grizzlies have a way of ruining hot prospects, and with a bad start in the NBA it can be hard for some players to pick the spark back up again..

    • rajbais - Jul 6, 2012 at 9:38 PM

      He is. Trust me. Kwame Brown has had a 10 year career. If he cannot reach that mark he will be worse!!!

      Look at the year-to-year statistics of both guys (minutes, points, rebounds, field goal percentage, blocks, etc.) he does not look much like a guy who will be heading to a 10-year career!!!

      Everyone commenting in the forums of PBT have way too much selective amnesia contaminating their brains!!! Plus, the only thing good you could say about Thabeet is that he might be a future shoe-in player in a trade that Oklahoma City will take part in!!!

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