Did Michael Jordan FINALLY Draft a Star in LaMelo Ball?
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Michael Jordan’s horrible NBA Draft track record goes way back to 2001, when he first became an NBA executive. His first move as the president of basketball operation of the Washington Wizards was to draft Kwame Brown with the first overall pick in that year’s Draft. Brown was a seven-foot center who was coming straight off high school and had the potential to be great; but instead, he became the biggest bust in NBA history and one of the biggest blemishes in MJ’s executive career. Brown never lived up to his potential, and the Wizards were so bad that Jordan took matters into his own hands and attempted to turn Washington’s bad fortunes around by making a comeback to NBA basketball.
In his first season, MJ led the team in scoring, assists, and steals but was limited to only 60 games due to injury. In his second year in Washington and his last season of his playing career, Jordan received multiple honors and celebrations; the Wizards sold out every single game and did well ratings-wise, but Jordan was often unsatisfied by his teammates efforts, even going as far as publicly calling out Kwame Brown – his own hand-picked franchise cornerstone – for a lack of focus and intensity. That’s when MJ knew he had messed up by drafting him.
His Airness assumed that after his third and last retirement, he’d have a spot back in the Wizards’ front office, but team owner Abe Pollin fired Jordan as the president of basketball operations given the underwhelming results. MJ later said he felt betrayed by the organization and that he would’ve never come out of retirement to play for Washington had he known he would be fired after calling it a career. The message was clear: the short, yet disastrous stint of MJ as an executive in Washington should have been his front office debut and farewell. But if you watched “The Last Dance”, you’d know somebody as competitive as MJ wouldn’t back down after that.
How could he make sure nobody could fire him on his next front office stop? Becoming a team owner, of course! Jordan bought a minority stake with the then Charlotte Bobcats in 2006, and as part of the deal, he also took full control over the team’s basketball operations. They say history repeats itself, and that was exactly the case once again, as Jordan’s first move as the executive of the Charlotte Bobcats was to use the team’s third overall pick to draft Adam Morrison. Most people don’t even remember him; but that’s cool, don’t worry. We don’t expect you to remember a guy who was out of the league by the end of his rookie contract. This guy had “BUST” written all over him, as it was very evident by watching him in college that his style of play wasn’t a good fit at the next level. There were guys like Brandon Roy, Rudy Gay, JJ Redick, Rajon Rondo, and Kyle Lowry all drafted later on in the first round, and Jordan picked arguably the guy with the worst potential from the field.
Jordan kept wasting his lottery picks for an extra five years: Brandan Wright, Alexis Ajinca, Gerald Henderson, none of these guys were as good as their draft position indicated. But in 2011, MJ drafted Kemba Walker and finally got one right. He became the franchise’s most iconic figure down the line before inevitably leaving the organization. Another bunch of terrible lottery picks followed Walker: Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Cody Zeller, Noah Vonleh, Frank Kaminsky. MJ actually drafted Shai Gilgeous-Alexander in 2018 but immediately traded him away, which would end up being a terrible mistake. P.J. Washington in 2019 was a pretty solid addition, but the team continued to struggle as Kemba Walker, the only true star to ever play for the team, left for greener pastures. But this past year, Jordan took the risk other top lottery teams were afraid to take: drafting LaMelo Ball.
Welcome to Hoopers Nation where we go over the latest NBA 2021 news, from life inside the NBA bubble to the backstories of players in the league. Today, we look at the Michael Jordan and the Charlotte Hornets with their luck throughout the draft. Over the years Michael Jordan has been know to be one of the worst team owners in sports history, but with his recent choice in the 2020 NBA Draft that might change. He picked LaMelo Ball and it is looking good. After a scoreless first game he has only been improving.
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