Only four have hit percentages below 60% – Shaquille O’Neal and these three of his followers.
However, not everything is so bad – after all, they are also the best rebounders in the last 15 seasons. In 2008-2013, Howard led the NBA rebounding season five times out of six, then Jordan replaced him for two years, and Drummond has won the race four times since 2016. And they are also the most striking examples of how the NBA development vector has changed in the last 5 years – back in the mid-00s, all three were considered stars and received huge contracts.
Dwight was in the second NBA symbolic five in 2014 (the last of his 8 hits), but was quoted later: in 2015 he was the fourth highest paid player in the NBA, and in 2016 he signed a new contract for 70 million and 3 years ;
Deandre was named to the Team of the Season three times in 2015-2017, including once in the top five; in the fight for the center;
Drummond also made the team of the season, finishing third in 2016, and also received a 130/5 contract extension from Detroit.
But since the late 2010s, none of them have claimed to be in the All-Star Game team, or even on the defense team. All three are spare centers who change clubs every year (or even several times a year). Moreover, each of the three was expelled or redeemed at least once, that is, some team chose to pay them so that they would no longer go out of the parquet in its form. Now all 3 play for the minimum wage in the NBA.
But their careers have become even more intertwined in recent NBA seasons
These three appear in the same NBA basketball teams – the centers change the Lakers bench for the Philadelphia bench, Philadelphia for Brooklyn, Brooklyn for the Lakers, while not playing for other clubs.
In 2019, the Lakers took Dwight on a non-guaranteed minimum wage, did not kick him out for good behavior in the middle of the NBA season, and so reached the championship title. Howard announced in the summer that he was renewing his contract with LAL , but LAL themselves did not know anything about it. They returned it only a year later. True, already at a guaranteed minimum wage (progress!).
Brooklyn basketball team signed DeAndre for 4 years solely because his friends Durant and Irving wanted to play with him on the same team. Irving even converted part of the base salary into bonuses to leave room for Jordan under the ceiling. DeAndre is no longer on the basketball team, and Irving does not receive his bonuses because he misses too many matches.
When Detroit realized it was time to part ways with Drummond, they couldn’t find better compensation for him than one second-round pick from Cleveland. The pick will be somewhere at the end of the draft. A year later, Cleveland didn’t even find such an offer and simply expelled the center after the deadline. His signing to the Lakers (Andre was second in the entire NBA in rebounds per game) was called an unfair boost to the rich club, the result: he lost the competition to the retiring 36-year-old Marc Gasol.
Howard, Gasol, Drummond, Howard again, plus Deandre, minus Deandre – honestly, the Lakers should have kept JaVale McGee at the club.
Is there any pattern in the fact that the same people migrate between the 3 clubs?
Maybe. Both the Sixers (Ambiid) and the Lakers (Davis) and the Nets (Durant) want someone to take the pressure off their crippled superstars from time to time. Hence – the fetish for the overall center without a throw.
Secondly, from these centers, by and large, only the status remained. The position of the fifth number in modern basketball does not imply a big contribution to the game – Dwight spends the last three NBA seasons on the floor 17 minutes on average, DeAndre – 20 (and the figure has dropped sharply this year), even 28-year-old Drummond, who due to troubles The Nets with the roster once again regained their place in the starting five of the NBA team, only once in 7 games were on the court for more than half of the game.
Therefore, universal NBA forwards are usually put in the role of a center changer – last year’s Bucks champion had sniper Bobby Portis, and the Phoenix finalist had Ayton’s nominal backup – Dario Saric, who began his career as number three, and sometimes even Jay Crowder, who is below 2 m growth.
At the same time, well-established basketball teams like the Lakers and the Nets all too often look for players with a big name (and friendly relations with the leaders), far from caring about how to fit them into the team in the first place. At the start of the season, LAL had 7 former All-Star players; Brooklyn has the same number now, and Phila has 4. At the same time, this basketball season, these three clubs at the MVZ were represented by the same LeBron, Durant, Embiid and Harden.
But the big name doesn’t know how to play basketball
This is easy to see from the numbers: at the period of his expulsion, DeAndre was the absolute worst in terms of utility in the Lakers, and the difference in the net rating between the Sixers with Embiid on the floor and the Sixers with Drummond was a monstrous +15 not in favor of Andre.
And this is in the regular NBA season – in the playoffs it will be even worse. Howard and Drummond failed the last draw (Dwight went out only 7-10 minutes per match in the lost Phils series against Atlanta, the Lakers did not use Andre at all in the decisive match against Phoenix), and DeAndre in it and did not participate at all – Brooklyn never released a center to the floor in the NBA playoffs.