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Biggest waste of sports talent ever.

Old 06-14-05, 10:42 PM
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Biggest waste of sports talent ever.

Tried to see if there was a thread on this but couldn't find one.

So I pose the question: Who's the biggest waste of sports talent ever?

My choice: Len Bias

My top choice: Len Bias

By the time he ended his fourth season with the University of Maryland basketball team, Len Bias was the most prolific scorer in school history and widely recognized as the finest player ever to wear a Terrapin uniform.

His dreams of fame and riches were about to come true: the Boston Celtics made the 22-year-old forward the No. 2 pick in the NBA draft. He would soon be a millionaire and playing on a front line that included Larry Bird, Kevin McHale and Robert Parish.

Two days later, on June 19, 1986, Bias was dead of a cocaine drug overdose.
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Old 06-14-05, 10:55 PM
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i don't know but i sure do love to laugh at ryan leaf.
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Old 06-14-05, 11:35 PM
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What's a Terrapin?
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Old 06-14-05, 11:48 PM
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Originally Posted by fumanstan
What's a Terrapin?
I'm not totaly sure but I know it owns Duke

B.A.

PS it's a turtle.
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Old 06-15-05, 12:57 AM
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Len Bias is a tragedy, I don't know if I can honestly say he wasted his sports talent because he snorted some coke.
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Old 06-15-05, 01:09 AM
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Barry Sanders should have played a few more years.
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Old 06-15-05, 01:20 AM
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While Bias's death certainly was a waste, there is no telling that he would have been an NBA star. There have been many #2 picks in all sports that have completely bombed. The only difference is that Bias died rather than just sucked.

For the answer to your question, I think you'd have to go with someone who was a star in the pros and then blew it, rather than someone who never made it big in the pros.
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Old 06-15-05, 02:12 AM
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Originally Posted by Jeremy517
While Bias's death certainly was a waste, there is no telling that he would have been an NBA star. There have been many #2 picks in all sports that have completely bombed. The only difference is that Bias died rather than just sucked.

For the answer to your question, I think you'd have to go with someone who was a star in the pros and then blew it, rather than someone who never made it big in the pros.
Terry Cummings
Sam Bowie <-- Picked before MJ!!
Armon Gilliam
Shawn Bradley
Antonio McDyess
Marcus Camby
Stromile Swift
Jay Williams
Tyson Chandler
Darko Milicec

You're pretty much screwed with #2 pick in the NBA. Though Okafor was this year's #2.
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Old 06-15-05, 02:16 AM
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In the "off to a good start" category: Kellen WInslow, Jr.
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Old 06-15-05, 04:06 AM
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Len Bias was unfortunate. Its hard for me to feel sorry for the guy though, he ruined his own life.

Biggest waste of talent has to be Ryan Leaf. The guy sucked more than an ageing pornstar.

However, on the not so obvious and probably wouldn't be mentioned side: Raul Mondesi. The guy has all the talent in the world. However, he blows. I don't know why.
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Old 06-15-05, 04:50 AM
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Originally Posted by PopcornTreeCt
Terry Cummings
Sam Bowie <-- Picked before MJ!!
Armon Gilliam
Shawn Bradley
Antonio McDyess
Marcus Camby
Stromile Swift
Jay Williams
Tyson Chandler
Darko Milicec

You're pretty much screwed with #2 pick in the NBA. Though Okafor was this year's #2.
Shawn Bradley never had any talent
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Old 06-15-05, 08:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Canadian Bacon
I'm not totaly sure but I know it owns Duke

B.A.

PS it's a turtle.
Slanderous bastard!











I'll say Jason "Jay" Williams

and

Michael Westbrook

Last edited by B.A.; 06-15-05 at 08:15 AM.
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Old 06-15-05, 10:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Goat3001
Len Bias was unfortunate. Its hard for me to feel sorry for the guy though, he ruined his own life.
Wow, you're harsh. Don't feel sorry for the guy because he went out to celebrate, did a drug that millions have done with no problem, and dies from it? By all accounts he was not a drug addict, he was not someone who snorted all the time and it finally caught up with him. Sure, he made a mistake, but it wasn't one he should have died from...

I could see not feeling sorry for someone who smokes a pack a day and dies from lung cancer, but if a guy keeled over after smoking his first cigarette, I'd sure feel sorry for him.
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Old 06-15-05, 02:10 PM
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Hmm. Well, Ricky Williams comes to mind. And yeah, Barry Sanders and Len Bias as well.

But I'll throw out a name: Pat Tillman. Good hitter, good tackler, solid all-around player who died too young. Now, admittedly, he gave his life to something more important than sports... but it's still a waste.
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Old 06-15-05, 02:17 PM
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Originally Posted by LurkerDan
Wow, you're harsh. Don't feel sorry for the guy because he went out to celebrate, did a drug that millions have done with no problem, and dies from it? By all accounts he was not a drug addict, he was not someone who snorted all the time and it finally caught up with him. Sure, he made a mistake, but it wasn't one he should have died from...

I could see not feeling sorry for someone who smokes a pack a day and dies from lung cancer, but if a guy keeled over after smoking his first cigarette, I'd sure feel sorry for him.
Unless you know Len personally, can you honestly tell me that you know 100% this was his first time using coke? I have no sympathy for someone who does a drug that they know can be that harmful to you and passes away from it. It's a tragedy when someone dies yes, but to say I should feel pity and sorrow for a guy who overdosed on coke is ludicrous. He put the coke in his system, not anyone else...so he brought the situation and consequences upon himself.
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Old 06-15-05, 02:18 PM
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Originally Posted by LurkerDan
Wow, you're harsh. Don't feel sorry for the guy because he went out to celebrate, did a drug that millions have done with no problem, and dies from it? By all accounts he was not a drug addict, he was not someone who snorted all the time and it finally caught up with him. Sure, he made a mistake, but it wasn't one he should have died from...

I could see not feeling sorry for someone who smokes a pack a day and dies from lung cancer, but if a guy keeled over after smoking his first cigarette, I'd sure feel sorry for him.


Yeah, I can't bring myself to say Len Bias. Sure, a waste, but the biggest waste? Don't think so, for the reasons you mention.

My vote? Roy Tarpley.
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Old 06-15-05, 02:18 PM
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Diego Maradona
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Old 06-15-05, 02:20 PM
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Dwight Gooden

Guy had arguably the best pitching season in the last 30 years, followed it up with a couple decent seasons, and then proceed to piss it all away with drugs.

1985 stats:

24-4, 16 complete games (8 shutouts), 268 K, 1.53 ERA
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Old 06-15-05, 02:21 PM
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Wait a second -- how could we all forget David Thompson???
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Old 06-15-05, 02:39 PM
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Originally Posted by NCMojo
Wait a second -- how could we all forget David Thompson???
Because most of us weren't alive and living in North Carolina in the mid-70s...

Oh, and the fact that hardly anyone gives a shit about NC State.
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Old 06-15-05, 02:50 PM
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Is that a community college?
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Old 06-15-05, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by El Scorcho
Dwight Gooden

Guy had arguably the best pitching season in the last 30 years, followed it up with a couple decent seasons, and then proceed to piss it all away with drugs.

1985 stats:

24-4, 16 complete games (8 shutouts), 268 K, 1.53 ERA
Similar to Strawberry...

"waste of talent" implies that they did something to themselves, instead of get injured or something, right? Because I think Grant Hill could've been a surefire top 50 player if he hadn't gotten injured (though I still think he's Hall of Fame worthy). Danny Manning, Bill Walton, Bo Jackson, Ralph Sampson even Chris Webber, etc.

If it's only self-inflicted, I'd say Shawn Kemp and Vin Baker, who were ironically traded for each other while they were still good, both ruined their careers. Similar for Derrick Coleman, who while decent really never became the great Power Forward he was projected as.
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Old 06-15-05, 03:48 PM
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grant hill HOF worthy? I don't even follow the NBA and I think that's ridiculous.
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Old 06-15-05, 03:49 PM
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Originally Posted by RoyalTea
grant hill HOF worthy? I don't even follow the NBA and I think that's ridiculous.

The Basketball Hall of Fame is all-encompassing: amatuer + pro.
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Old 06-15-05, 03:57 PM
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Originally Posted by mautos
Unless you know Len personally, can you honestly tell me that you know 100% this was his first time using coke? I have no sympathy for someone who does a drug that they know can be that harmful to you and passes away from it. It's a tragedy when someone dies yes, but to say I should feel pity and sorrow for a guy who overdosed on coke is ludicrous. He put the coke in his system, not anyone else...so he brought the situation and consequences upon himself.
Never said he never did coke, I'm just saying that all reports were he wasn't a coke addict.

So, by your account, anyone who does anything that they know can be harmful to them and dies shouldn't deserve pity (or even sorrow?). A guy who has some beers? That is just a ridiculous position to take, we should all be bubble people if we never did anything that could potentially harm us. Millions of people have snorted coke with very limited negative side effects. Many more people than you probably realize, probably friends family or coworkers. By far its most dramatic side effect is addiction, and Bias didn't die because he was addicted. His death was a fluke, and I sure as hell feel sorry for him and his family.

I will agree that Tarpley, Straw, and Doc are excellent choices. Their addiction to drugs caused their careers to be mere shadows of what they could have been.
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