Roy Hibbert: Indiana Pacers: 11.2 PPG, 6.9 RPG, and 2.3 BPG, FG 45.4%
Roy Hibbert makes a huge difference out on the floor don’t get me wrong, but Hibbert’s numbers are just so low it is ridiculous. A great piece from Bleacher Report’s Jim Cavan points out that Hibbert’s numbers are no better than Kwame Brown’s bust labelled season. This is worth noting. Hibbert’s averages of 11.2 PPG, 6.9 RPG, and 2.3 BPG do not scream All-Star, but the leagues coaches thought differently. Roy has taken a step back this season after a stellar campaign last year and the year before and even then were his numbers still a bit low. His size and strength do make him a valuable commodity for most teams, especially ones like the Pacers trying to dethrone the Heat. Not many teams do not want a highly athletic, durable, “7”2″ center.
But Hibbert is on this list because he lacks the star power and star numbers that warrant his contract.
Jrue Holiday: New Orleans Pelicans: 14.3 PPG, 7.9 APG, 4.2 RPG, FG 44.7 %
Jrue Holiday is a hell of a player when he is on the court. The problem is, that has not been the case for much of this NBA season. He has only played in 34 games for the Pelicans this season, and he will miss the rest due to a surgery on his right tibia. Jrue is making over $9 million this season and has not been able to put out production nearly worth that. His injuries have definitely held him back no doubt, but he needs to show that he can be a 82 games a season player to be worth that kind of money.
Derrick Favors: Utah Jazz: 12.9 PPG, 8.8 RPG, 1.5 BPG, FG 51.2%
Derrick Favors has proven himself to be a great player on an NBA court. The only problem is when. His inconsistency has tarnished his reputation as a budding star. His numbers don’t help either. Still, Favors is considered a player with the most upside for a few years down the road. Here in his third season, maybe it is time for Derrick to make that next jump. Favors still could be a top PF in this league, but his chance to shine is now.
Luol Deng: Cleveland Cavaliers: 16.5 PPG, 6.0 RPG, 2.9 APG, FG 43.4%
Deng is a great productive player in every case, but he finds himself on this list for two reasons: his success and his money. Traded to Cleveland from Chicago for Andrew Bynum and draft picks earlier this season, Deng was stuck on a team with no direction, no leader, and no capable front office. Why is he on this list if it is such a terrible team you may ask? It is because Cleveland has not gotten better. All Star players should be able to come in and change the whole atmosphere as well as the record (see Rudy Gay to Sacramento). Deng’s failure to team up with Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters to form a scary offensive trio has left Cleveland on the outside looking in for the upcoming playoffs. Also, Deng is making over $14 million this year. If his All-Star bids didn’t get him going, then that kind of money should. Deng’s unwillingness to sign a 3 year, $30 million extension with Chicago was one of the main reasons they decided to ship him off. This tells us that he thinks he is worth more than $10 million a year. Maybe he should start playing like it when players by the name of Nick Young and Brandon Knight are above him in the scoring rankings.
Ricky Rubio: Minnesota Timberwolves: 8.9 PPG, 8.5 APG, 4.4 RPG, 2.4 SPG
Rubio has always been a bit of a mess on the court. The good kind, of course. But Rubio’s lack of development in scoring has NBA statheads scratching their head. A player loaded with Steve Nash potential, Rubio should have developed a deadeye 3 point shot by now. While his steals and assists really do help the Timberwolves, his lack of offensive threat allows defenses to focus on the shooting of Kevin Martin and the Superstar ability of Kevin Love. Rubio will likely get a hefty contract when his is up, but how much of that he truly deserves will determine on the rest of the NBA season and his offensive game’s development.
Stats courtesy of espn.go.com
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