Thursday, February 26, 2009

Top 4 players we're glad aren't wearing a Magic uniform anymore

20 years. Yeah, that’s right, the Magic have been in the NBA almost long enough to buy a Mike's Hard Cranberry Lemonade. Over the years all sorts of characters have put on the Blue and White. There were the greats like Nick Anderson, Darrell Armstrong, and Steven Hunter. There were the quality players like Dennis Scott, Tony Battie, and Scott Skiles who contributed for a number of years. But there was also a lot of wasted space. There were some locker room cancers, some laziness, and well, some very interesting characters. So who are we glad is no longer around to fill newspaper headlines or arrest warrants, or paternity suits? Who would we be most cool with had they never worn a Magic jersey? Well, here it is, the top 4 players we're glad aren't wearing a Magic uniform anymore:

Brian Cook

How did they get here: Acquired via trade for Trevor Ariza, he came here along with current Hawks G Maurice Evans from the Lakers. Take a wild guess at which player fans were more happy to be receiving.

What they did wrong: **** near everything. Brian seemed to be a great teammate at first. Then at the start of the 08-09 season, he started to complain about his role. However, that was the problem. He had no role. Brought in to space the floor more for Dwight and to help rebound, Cook never really did that. When given playing time, he would come in and jack up shots the minute the ball touched his hands. This sort of erratic play drove Stan Van Gundy insane. Coach didn't eat or sleep for about 2 weeks, and would pull out his hair after every 3pt shot Brian took [see a picture of Stan during hard times on the right]. Cook, for his size and girth, couldn't rebound to save his life. Originally brought in to supplement the loss of Tony Battie to season ending surgery, many still wonder what GM Otis Smith was thinking when trading for the soft PF. All seemed lost and lopsided with the trade, that is until Cook made his most meaningful contribution to the team. Passing his psychical on the trade that the Magic made to acquire Rafer Alston from the Rockets. F plus.

Where are they now: Brian was traded to the Rockets in exchange for Rafer Alston. With a team full of promising forwards, he looks to be in the same situation he was in with the Magic. Spotty minutes when the team is desperate for 3pt shooting.

Doug Christie

How did they get here: Traded from Sacramento.

What they did wrong: Being an overemotional sulker in the trade that killed 2 careers (Steve-O). Doug was just never interested in playing for Orlando in the 1st place and looked disinterested the day he got here. His wife would reveal that the Kings made him a good-bye video that he would watch over and over until she would finally convince him to go to sleep. Christie's D was already slipping as it was so the desired results of the trade to add perimeter D failed miserably. F minus minus.

Where are they now: Giving his wife a foot massage.

Darko Milicic

How did they get here: Orlando acquired Mr. Milicic from the Detroit Pistons along with fan favorite Carlos Arroyo in return for another Magic legend Kelvin Cato and a first round pick.

What they did wrong: For starters, Darko had the unfortunate burden of being the second pick in the 2003 NBA draft. He was chosen ahead of Carmelo Anthony, Chris Bosh, Dwayne Wade, David West, Reece Gaines AND Brian Cook. You can’t blame the man for this, but he has never been able to live up to the hype. The guy showed some signs of promise, at times playing some lock down defense and hitting some long J’s. Unfortunately, the good times were more than often erased by multiple Hedo like moments which consisted of a combination of laziness and stupidity. Overall it can be chalked up to what seems like a lack of motivation, which for someone with his talent is unacceptable. As his career evolved we began to get a glance into the reasons why Darko wasn’t ever going to make an All-Star game. There were the pictures like the one posted. We’re no doctors, but it’s probably safe to say the nights of drinking and smoking are not good for someone who gets paid to be a world class athlete. Plus, there was the unforgettable anti referee/sister of referee/mother of referee rant following a game (Warning: Language very, very, very NSFW). That counts double. D minus.

Where are they now: Otis let Darko head over to Memphis for more money. At the time many chastised the GM for letting such a promising player walk. Darko has proved Otis right by continuing to tread the NBA waters… Not quite bad enough to get the ax while not producing the numbers he should.

Anthony Avent [not pictured, trust me, we tried]

How did they get here: Traded from Milwaukee

What they did wrong: Well, Anthony Avent had the worst hands we've ever seen on a basketball player ever. If you replaced your hands with two cinder blocks covered in rubber and grease, you could catch passes better than Avent could. Avent couldn't shoot, pass, defend or rebound, and at no point in his year and a half with Orlando did Avent look interested in doing anything productive. Combine that with his penchant for telling bizarre stories to the press to cover up his ridiculous domestic problems, and you're left with a player who had a clearly negative impact on a team that made the finals. F minus.

Where are they now: Most likely drunk and retired, which is sad, since he made more money being useless for 6 years in the NBA than we'll likely ever even see in our lifetimes. If anyone needs us, we'll be self-immolating.

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