Feeling Even Fuller
NBA Source dropped a great look back at my favorite NBA draft of the all time- the One Nine Nine Six (1996). I can't think of another draft that produced so much depth and entertaining stories. This is the draft that changed the league for years to come.
The Superstars: Allen Iverson, Stephon Marbury, Ray Allen, Kobe Bryant, Jermaine O'Neal
The All Stars: Shareef Abdur-Rahim, Antoine Walker, Peja Stojakovic, Steve Nash, Zyndrunas Ilgauskas
The Solid Role Players: Marcus Camby, Kerry Kittles, Erick Dampier (admit it- he's decent when healthy and feels like playing), Tony Delk, Derek Fisher, and Jerome "Junkyard Dog" Williams, Othella Harington, Moochie Norris, Jeff McInnis, Malik Rose,
Even some of the scrubs won titles or went deep into the playoffs: Samaki Walker, Travis Knight, Shandon Anderson
And in this great draft who did the Warriors take?
11. Golden State - C Todd Fuller, North Carolina St.
5 Seasons: 11.1 MPG, 3.7 PPG, 3.0 RPG, 0.3 BPG
-Played exactly 2,500 minutes in his entire career- remarkable!
-Led the NBA in FT% in '00-01 with an astounding 100% (8-8)
-Scored a career-high 18 points against the Nets in his rookie seson
If you want to talk about Samaki Walker being a bust, then Todd Fuller must rank as a massive train wreck (he might be the only player who's college GPA (3.97) was higher than his career scoring average of 3.7-- well, maybe that's going too far). Let's look back and try and wonder what the hell GM Dave Twardzik was thinking in June of 1996...
Twardzik: "Todd Fuller, I really like him. I see him becoming the next Bill Walton. Did you know he was a Rhodes Scholar finalist this year as a Math major?!"
Asst. GM: "Umm...okay. I don't know, boss. He seems like a stiff. Kobe Bryant has star potential written all over him, maybe we should take a closer look at him."
Twardzik: "Nah. We have a great kid in Latrell Sprewell who promises to be a model citizen in Oakland for years to come."
Asst. GM: "What about this kid playing in Greece-- Peja Stojakovic? I heard he's a Eureopean version of Chris Mullin. Maybe Mully could help bring the kid along?"
Twardzik: "Nonsense. Mully isn't ready to take a backseat. He's still got 4 or 5 good years left in him."
Asst. GM: "Well what about a point guard? We could really use a talented and seasoned college player like Steve Nash after you traded Tim Hardaway to the Heat for a bag of pretzels?
Twardzik: "Steve who? I told you I'm going after Mark Price this summer. Nobody will suspect a monster comeback season from him after he missed 109 games the last 2 seasons."
Asst. GM: "Well maybe we should consider giving a look to at least one of these high school players. I hear this kid Jermaine O'Neal is a real project, but the upside is undeniable."
Twardzik: "C'mon. Joe Smith is a future Hall of Famer and Clifford Rozier is going to be a great back-up for years to come. What we need to do is trade away Donyell Marshall-- is Adam Keefe available?"
Asst. GM: (Slams head against the wall) "I don't think we should give up on Donyell just yet. We'll talk about that later, but if you really want a center, let's at least work out Todd Fuller against that gigantic Lithuanian."
Twardzik: "Yeah, I've already scheduled it. Priest Lauderdale will be going up against Fuller on Friday."
Asst. GM: "Not him, I meant Zydrunas Ilgauskas. I think he's got a lot of potential."
Twardzik: "I'm not drafting a guy who's name I can't pronounce. Listen to me-- everything is under control. I've been doing this for years! Trust me, Fuller is the real deal."
Asst. GM: (Throws self off building)
Props to NBA Source for pointing out the ridiculously hillarious- Todd Fuller's college GPA was higher than his career scoring average.
But the real question for Warriors Nation- Was Todd Fuller the worst ever Warriors draft pick? Drop a line in the comments section... maybe you'll be the fan dropping next week's Wednesday Warriors Words.