The top 10 worst NBA Players from last decade's NBA champions proves that although it takes a team to win a title, it doesn't take everyone from the team.
Top 10 worst NBA players from championship teams of the last decade
There is no shame to being that 12th man on the team that only sees minutes when a team waives the white flag. At least they're still champions, which is more than what many Hall of Famers can say. A chip is a chip!
We looked at the ten NBA champions from the 2010s to find the 10 worst NBA players. These players lacked the ability, relevance, or were just downright awful
In considering these players, we excluded raw prospects, one-and-done signees, and NBA stars who were on the tail-ends of their careers.
10. J.R. Smith (Cavaliers '16)
Before he became a living meme, J.R. Smith was actually one of the NBA's most electrifying players. From his highlight-reel dunks to long-distance bombing, Smith became a fan favourite wherever he played. Well, not until his notorious game 1 blunder.
To Smith's credit, he's a step above everyone on this list. He was the 2013 Sixth Man of the Year and averages 12.4 points in his career. But he'll always be known as the village idiot of LeBron's championship-calibre teams.
9. Jeremy Lin (Raptors '17)
Another great thing about the Toronto Raptors' 2019 title was the fact "Linsanity" was a part of it. The first-ever Asian-American star in the NBA made waves with the Knicks before bouncing around several teams.
While Lin is not entirely deserving of being put in a top ten worst NBA players list, his horrendous performance while with Toronto earned him this spot. In eight playoff games, Lin averaged 1.1 points on 22.2% shooting in just 3.4 minutes. This easily made him the worst member on the team. Sorry, Jeremy!
8. Zaza Pachulia (Warriors '17 & '18)
Pachulia makes this list not because he lacked the skills, but more so because he lacked ethics. Known as the dirtiest player during the Warriors' dynasty, Pachulia intentionally injured players and resorted to bully tactics mostly seen in the 80's era.
Among those Pachulia injured include Russell Westbrook and Kawhi Leonard. He might only be #9 on this list, but he's easily one of the 5 worst NBA players in terms of being dirty.
7. Dahntay Jones (Cavaliers '16)
Jones was so bad during his tenure in Cleveland that he got cut not once, not twice, but three times. The defensive specialist was signed by the Cavaliers not just for his defence, but so he can be their aggravator. LeBron reportedly even paid for his fines accrued from trash-talking.
With the Cavs, Jones appeared in 15 playoff games averaging a whopping 1.1 points in 3.3 minutes.
6. Brian Cardinal (Mavericks '11)
Mavs need to resign @BrianCardinal for this series. Can’t have dudes bullying the Luka. And can’t have Porzingod risking ejection to get his buddy’s back. Cardinal don’t play that. You want to get physical? Zero worries. Let’s dance. Custodian style. pic.twitter.com/c9KSmV5aHJ
— Ben Rogers (@BenRogers) August 18, 2020
Cardinal is the B-side to Zaza Pachulia. He was the "good enforcer" for the Dallas Mavericks. Known as "The Custodian" Cardinal would do the dirty work for his teams whether it's flopping for a charge, hard fouling or going after players that pick on his teammates.
A prominent figure in Purdue University, his alma mater, Cardinal remains a prominent figure in the basketball world. But his career average of 4.6 points (1.1 in the 2011 playoffs) earned him this spot.
5. Timofey Mozgov (Cavaliers '16)
Mozgov would forever be immortalized as that guy Blake Griffin dunked on not once but twice. Think of Mozgov as a Shawn Bradley minus the shot-blocking and with a career average of 6.8 points.
When he was traded to the Cavs in 2015, Mozgov set a record by becoming the first Russian (along with Sasha Kaun) to win an NBA championship. He averaged a whopping 1.2 points also making him one of the 10 worst NBA players to win a chip in the last decade.
4. Brandon Rush (Warriors '15)
The most "exciting" part about Brandon Rush is whenever he would make a basket as it was a rare feat. Rush was supposedly a sharpshooter when the Warriors signed him but in 33 games with the team, he had historically bad shooting (20-10-45).
Rush would play just three games in the Warriors' 2015 championship run making one basket in six attempts. This season alone could earn him any spot in a 10 worst NBA players list.
3. Eddy Curry (Heat '12)
Young Bulls: Tyson Chandler & Eddy Curry (2001) pic.twitter.com/gtInFKMtvC
— ThrowbackHoops (@ThrowbackHoops) November 12, 2018
One of the most notorious draft busts, Curry managed to win an NBA title with the Miami Heat despite not playing a single minute in the playoffs.
We won't trash Curry too much as he's endured a plethora of misfortune including cardiac problems, sexual harassment allegations, and the murder of his ten-month-old daughter.
2. Austin Daye (Spurs '14)
If Brandon Rush had a historically bad shooting season, Daye has had a terrible shooting career. The 15th-overall pick in the 2009 draft showed promise in his rookie season but quickly fell off a cliff.
Daye won a chip with the Spurs despite playing in just one game and missing both of his field-goal attempts. In 293 NBA games, Daye averaged 5.2 points and shot 40.2% from the field.
1. Adam Morrison (Lakers '10)
(2010) Adam Morrison gives us his secrets to success, in probably the shortest interview ever. 😂 pic.twitter.com/dMkN1n5yMm
— Timeless Sports (@timelesssports_) March 6, 2017
One of the all-time biggest busts, Adam Morrison found a "second life" in the twilight of his NBA career by becoming a meme back when memes weren't a thing yet. The Gonzaga legend was drafted third overall and averaged 7.5 points on 37.3% shooting in his four-season career.
He managed to find his way to the Kobe-led Lakers and played a whopping 13 minutes in their back-to-back title campaign. Morrison will always stand out as one of the NBA's worst defensive players and one of the worst NBA players from a championship team.
Just like how these players managed to be at the right place at the right time, so can you when you wager on NBA teams. Many of these championship teams were unpredicted and handsomely rewarded their backers. Find the right NBA bets with online sportsbooks.