Friday, February 26th, 2010 at 9:00 am  |  40 responses

Hasheem Thabeet Sent to the D-League

Hasheem “The Dream” became the highest draft pick ever to be demoted down to the minors: “The Griz acknowledged then that Thabeet was a project, and more confirmation came Thursday. Thabeet, a 7-footer out of Connecticut, is the highest NBA draft pick ever assigned to the NBA’s Development League. Thabeet will join the Grizzlies’ D-League affiliate, the Dakota Wizards, today before their game in Erie, Pa. The decision to send Thabeet to the D-League came just a few days after Griz coach Lionel Hollins announced that undrafted center Hamed Haddadi would get the backup minutes behind starter Marc Gasol. Before Wednesday’s victory over Washington, Thabeet seemed unfazed by his benching. ‘Me being the No. 2 pick doesn’t mean I have to go and contribute right away,’ Thabeet said. ‘There’s a reason they drafted me. I just have to work hard, get better and then one day be able to answer the call.”‘

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  • D’Angelo

    wasted. another center draftbust.

  • matt


  • nastierthanu2

    Too early for the Yinka Dare comparison? I know Yinka was jacked up though I’m just talking about living up to the hype.

  • http://www.Twitter/notebooknick NotebookNick

    This really shouldn’t surprise anyone. He has no offensive game whatsoever, and isn’t an athletic freak like Dwight Howard, whose offensive game was comparable when he entered the league.

  • mike

    it’s one thing to be a part of the wizards of the nba, but to be a part of the d-league wizards…ouch

  • http://www.bluefont.com Hisham

    good response, Hasheem.. he seems humble enough to not let this get to him too much. now let’s see how this works out.

  • Yesse

    The draft was very weak and the best and better draft picks came after Blake, Hasheem and Hill have been disappointing. Now we know Blake hasnt played yet, but i doubt he will play like Jennings or Evans. They should have put Hasheem on D-League even earlier.

  • JoeMaMa

    Good on Thabeet to take it well; the guy’s still very raw, his team is doing better than expected, he’s got time to grow, but he still needs to get good minutes. This is in no way indicative of anything other than a young baller needing some seasoning. The guy can’t control where he gets picked. Remember, he doesn’t have much experience at the game. Best of luck, Hasheem! Keep at it.

  • http://www.hoopsvibe.com/features/overdribbling chiqo

    it’ll be much harder for us to get good video of him getting dunked on in the d-league. thanks for nothing, grizz.

  • http://www.slamonline.com/ niQ

    I don’t even know what to say about this, they didn’t even need to draft a big. In a point guard heavy draft, I don’t understand why the teams that needed a point never draft a point guard.
    Oh wait, I forgot it was cause they picked up Iverson.

  • Jahi R

    Ok, let me get this right, Dejuan Blair was taken #37 by the San Antonio Spurs. In gist, he is averaging nearly 8 points and 6 rebounds on a conservative. Those numbers will double next year. On the other hand, Hasheem Thabeet was taken #2, I’m hearing the ghost of Sam Bowie, and he has been demoted to the NBDL☠?

    I’m not too surprised, anyone that watched thabeet @ UCONN saw a really tall guy with limited athleticism, and Dejuan Blair is Charles Barkely without a jumpshot at this point.

    The Grizz should fire their scouting team.

  • AL29

    Hasheem “Darko Milicic” Thabeet.

  • davidR

    give him time. at least they’re taking the steps to help him develop

  • Bruno

    I only know haddadi for nick young dunking on him so I’d wait for thabeet if I was the grizzlies but d-league???

  • Rob

    should’ve drafted DeJuan Blair. Definitely. Any of us non professionals could see that, why the almighty scouts couldn’t? beats me.

    Second coming of Dikembe, yeah right.

  • NBA kid

    I remember something like this happening before. Blair owned thabeet in college, thabeet got picked in the lottery, Blair fell to the second round, thabeets a bust, Blair is dominating. Paul milsap dominated shelden Williams in college, Williams gets picked 5th, milsap in the second round, milsap dominates, sheldens a bust. weird how that works out

  • Young C

    @Jahi R. If Im not mistaken, the Grizz already did fire their scouting team due to the economy

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  • http://fjkld.com Jukai

    Jahi R: DeJuan Blair will have a 5-8 year career due to his ACLs. A slowly building team like Memphis does not want a player with that short of a half-life.

  • SylVain

    It is too early to judge Thabeet but this is a sign of his lack of basketball IQ. Though you cant teach height, you can teach someone how to play the game and he can’t play. He’s similar to Greg Oden. 7’0 plus and awkward skills.

  • Orlando Woolridge

    whoa! I know Oden hasn’t lived up to his potential as he’s been injured constantly, but GO’s skills are at a much higher level than Thabeet’s. When healthy, Oden was putting up decent numbers.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Alan Paul

    Well, this one was sort of obvious to see coming. Did the Griz actually watch him play in college?

  • Shem

    Stop saying they should have drafted Dejuan Blair. He’s a surprise pick. He wasn’t supposed to be this good+ he had injuries.. bad ones. If your saying that Memphis shoulda drafted Dejuan then your telling me that 28 other teams who had also predicted Blair at mid 2nd round fucked up? No.. the spurs got lucky and it’s easier to get better stats when you have the greatest pf of all time teaching you as well as minutes against 2nd tier guys. Blair is a better player but they “shouldn’t have” drafted him. They “should have” not drafted Thabeet

  • Nassor Jangwa

    He is still having opportunity! He has to work hard and he will resume his position and fortunately he seemed to understand that! So we hope he knows what to do!

  • http://www.rich-imaging.com Dutch Rich

    The only reason Blair dropped so far was because of the injury rumor mill.
    That dude was a beast at UConn. Neither players are marquee investments, so SAS bets on boosting their frontline for the short term on the cheap which is very smart. A lot of GM’s messed up, but this is nothing new anyway.

  • MVPballer

    You gotta remember that DeJuan Blair doesn’t have any ACL’s. Just that by itself was probably enough to shove him down into the secound round. I’m pretty sure he would’ve have been drafted mid-late 1st round if he had his ACL’s.

  • http://www.slamonline.com/ niQ

    @Shem. Blair was NOT a surprise pick. He was ranked top 15 in MANY scouting reports. The only surprise was that he dropped to 2nd round. His ACL’s were the only reason why he dropped down to the Spurs. People still talk about how Blair basically dominated Thabeet in their game against each other in college.

  • BostonBaller

    If Hasheem is true to his word then I commend him for his maturity and outlook. This move good be a great one if he improves enough to do more than just contribute. This move could be terrible if it breaks his spirit. I wish him well.

  • http://slamonline.com Dave

    This somehow turned in to Blair versus Thabeet…

    Jukai’s point is solid, though the truth can’t be denied.

    You’d be a fool to take a Kieth Closs over a Larry Johnson.

  • LetsGetIt

    Thabeet just needs to learn the game he left college too early. Had one hot season and just had to jump to the pros. Next couple seasons bet you he starts dominating. And Blair should have a full sucessful career those injuries were from high school he should be straight now. Lot of teams did sleep on him though

  • Shem

    @niQ: Although Blair was ranked top 15 (I watch college ball a lot), he doesn’t have any ACL’s. He may be very good now on a Spurs team but he’s playing behind a top 3 all time pf + his game wasn’t the question, it was how long he could maintain that game. I love the guy i’ve seen how he DOMINATES on the off rebs but I can’t see him playing more then 4 years injury free

  • Maya Laku

    This guy has no offensive game

  • The Philosopher

    The thing.I like about Thabeet is that he seems to know his limitations. And he seems like he knew coming in that he wasn’t ready. He wasn’t sure of himself. But he’s also getting good money. There’s no real pressure on him.

  • hooaah

    absolutely huge bust i guarantee it
    the man sucks period
    his college nemesis dajuan blair is thriving in the nba

  • matt

    wouldn’t tyreke evans have fit in well on the thunder at the two guard? is harden a bust yet?

    durant-green-evans-westbrook is a great lineup

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    There, I said it.

  • therighttoremainsalient

    ‘Me being the No. 2 pick doesn’t mean I have to go and contribute right away,’ >>> epic. lack. of. understanding. fail.

  • Shem

    @Teddy the Bear: I think the Lakers, and Raptors have better front courts (I’m sure Turk will pick it up)

  • TD

    Being a Pistons fan, this makes me feel a little better about the Darko nightmare. But, lets face it. No one is surprised by this.

  • kb

    give thabeet at least two more years before you call him a bust. i believe you can tell how good or great a player will be by his third year. check the stats. d-wade(championship), cp3(07-08 hornets) lebron(31.ppg, first playoffs) kobe( 22 ppg became all- star), kevin durant this year (all-star, 29,6, 1steal, 1 block, thunder in the playoffs) thats the leap year