The career of an NBA player can wash out quickly and without warning, but in the case of these five guys, we shouldn’t give up on them yet.
Outside of the 10-to-12 true superstars in the NBA today, it can be surprising even to hardcore fans how quickly and quietly players can change teams, or simply fall out of the league altogether. Even more so now that there are no games on, and we have resorted to watching professionals play NBA 2K on ESPN to get our fix.
We all know where the Kawhi Leonards and LeBron James‘s of the world are playing, but did you know that Jerian Grant is now in the G-League? Or that Miles Plumlee has played in both China and Australia already in 2019-20? Wasn’t he just with the Atlanta Hawks a minute ago?
To add to the fickle nature of the league and its fans, players who were once thought of as up and coming or even important to a particular franchise can be discarded and forgotten about just as quickly. Luol Deng is one such name who comes to mind. He was a player who seemed to crucial to the Chicago Bulls when they were building around Derrick Rose, only to fade into obscurity.
He played in 22 games for the Minnesota Timberwolves last season, although you’d be forgiven for not knowing that either. The truth is the ends of an organization’s benches often resemble a mix of guys you’ve never heard of, and guys who you didn’t know had somehow ended up playing in that city.
Finally, there are those players who fall into the category of simply being forgotten about. Either through trade. Or not being very good in the first place. Or playing for a team that is not very good. Or some combination of all three. These are the individuals that are slipping through the cracks, but who still could have something valuable to give a team.
These are interesting cases, the potential redemption stories who may even have looked like promising players earlier in their careers too. Let’s examine five such guys who could end up helping another franchise when everybody is finally back on the court.