I have a hard time lumping all NBA “busts” into one category. To me, the harsh classification of the word bust should be reserved for guys like Kwame Brown and Darius Miles. High draft picks, loaded with potential, who simply played a particularly poor version of NBA basketball throughout the life of their NBA careers.
For guys like Greg Oden, who get hurt, stay hurt and never really play in the NBA at all as a result, that is just more of a tough-break type scenario to me as opposed to the latter. Sure, Oden is still a “bust” too at the end of the day, especially with the fact that he has not been ultimately productive while being selected one spot before Kevin Durant. But a lot of it is not his fault entirely, is what I’m saying.
That said, his career is probably over. Although he would argue it isn’t just yet. This according to Fox Sports Ohio:
Greg Oden was waived by the Portland Trail Blazers last month, but the oft-injured center’s agent reportedly said Oden is not set to give up on his career. The No. 1 overall draft pick in 2007, Oden has played in just 82 games while undergoing five major knee surgeries. But Oden’s agent, Mike Conley [Sr.], told CSNNW.com his client will continue to attempt a comeback in a career that never fully got started.
“Everyone is quick to talk bust, but put themselves in his shoes,” Conley told the website. “He has gone through a lot as a young man and he is continuing to work to get back. For him to come back is going to be a remarkable perseverance on his behalf.
“No, he’s not retiring. The only way that would happen is if he was forced to and I don’t see that happening. He’s dedicated to making sure he’s back on the court as soon as possible.”
Oden, 24, has only played in parts of two seasons and missed two other years. He’s averaged 9.4 points and 7.3 rebounds per game in his 82 career games. Conley did not rule out a return to the Trail Blazers, telling CSNNW.com “there’s a possibility.” The Miami Heat and Indiana Pacers are also reportedly interested in exploring a possible deal, according to the website.
That age thing, 24, is something that shouldn’t totally be dismissed in Oden’s case. He still is young, and maybe a guy like Zydrunas Ilguaskas can be used as an example of what is still possible should he ever actually be able to get back on the NBA court.
I would like to continue on there, and tell you that I think it is possible, and he will, but I still don’t unfortunately.
Nevertheless, if he is able to put some productive years together, Mike Conley is right. It really would be remarkable.