Last season, Forbes ranked Carmelo Anthony as the NBA’s most overpaid player. This year, through the first half of the 2013-14 season, Forbes calculates that it’s still a Knick who is the league’s most overpaid. Andrea Bargnani is this season’s most overpaid NBA player, shocking no one, except perhaps former Knicks GM Glen Grunwald who traded for the disappointing former No. 1 pick this summer.
There are all sorts of ways you can differentiate players return on investment (ROI) â€” to borrow a Venture Capitalist buzz word. But Forbes used advanced stats for wins produced, as calculated by BoxScoreGeeks.com‘s University of Southern Utah economics professor David Berri. ‘Melo added the least number of wins produced per dollar after making $19.1 million last season, but this year it’s Andrea Bargnani, who is taking in $11.8 million of James Dolan‘s
hard-earned inherited dollars while producing just âˆ’1.31 wins:
Bargnani hits the NBA All-Star break with numbers that mostly match his career norms: 13.3 points, 5.3 rebounds, and just one blocked shot per game, while shooting 44% from the field. By Berri’s calculations, Bargnani, who makes $11.8 million, has cost the Knicks 1.3 wins this season, making him one of the NBA’s three worst players among those who average at least 20 minutes a game. Apparently, when you allow yourself to become enticed by a big man capable of flashing some quickness and a decent scoring touch, it’s easy to overlook the downside and get burnt with a bad contract.
Coming in just behind Bargnani: Chicago big man Carlos Boozer ($15.3 million; -.01 Wins Produced), who is at or near career lows in scoring and field goal percentage, and Charlotte guard Ben Gordon ($13.2 million; âˆ’0.57 wins), a onetime effective scorer whose numbers have sunk dramatically in recent years.
Berri looks at pace, too, so even if a team plays a slower game, their players aren’t penalized for the reduced numbers. Forbes and Berri also neglected including those players who aren’t getting enough playing time to warrant mentioning, which is why another Knick, Amar’e Stoudemire, isn’t included even though he’s getting $21.679 million this year without coming close to producing enough wins to account for his bursting bank account.
Rounding out the rest of 2014′s top 10 most overpaid players in the NBA (from most to least), are Pau Gasol ($19.2 million; 1.5 wins produced), Joe Johnson ($21.4; 2.84), Anthony Bennett ($5.2; âˆ’2.05), Ersan Ilyasova ($7.9; âˆ’1.18), Zach Randolph ($17.8; 2.22), Chris Bosh ($19.07; 2.78) and O.J. Mayo ($8.0; âˆ’0.77).
Is Andrea Bargnani the most overpaid player in the NBA?
Follow Spencer on Twitter at @SpencerTyrel.
Follow Dime on Twitter at @DimeMag.
Become a fan of Dime Magazine on Facebook HERE.