During his spell in charge of the Washington Wizards, Michael Jordan selected high schooler Kwame Brown as the no. 1 overall pick in the 2001 NBA Draft, taking a pass on the likes of Pau Gasol, Shane Battier, Jason Richardson and Tony Parker in the process. We all know how well that turned out, if not for Jordan, then certainly for the Lakers, Grizzlies and Pistons, all of whom hoped against home that the oft unmotivated Brown would bounce back from being slurred by a pair of Hall Of Famers. And who better to assist Brown, than one of those very legends? From the Charlotte Observer’s Ron Green :
Brown, 28, has signed a one-year deal with the Bobcats, giving the team owned by Jordan a shot-blocking presence inside to offset the loss of Tyson Chandler.
œWe think this is a critical year for Kwame to get his career turned around and headed in the right direction, Brown™s agent, Mark Bartlestein, said Monday.
œThe challenge of going to Charlotte and playing for Michael again and getting to play for Larry Brown, a great teacher, will be good for him. They spent a lot of time recruiting him.
Jordan™s decision to make Brown the No. 1 pick in the 2001 draft has often been cited as one of the biggest draft blunders in recent years. In his nine NBA seasons, Brown has averaged just 6.7 points and 5.4 rebounds while playing for four teams, most recently the Detroit Pistons.
œMost people would think (Brown) would run away from going back to play for Michael again. That™s not the case. Kwame welcomes it, Bartlestein said.
Kwame Brown will fill a needed role for the Bobcats, who lacked a strong defender and rebounder in the middle since Chandler™s departure. Brown is not primarily a scorer and he will supplement a roster that includes Nazr Mohammed, Erick Dampier and DeSagana Diop inside.
œKwame is one of the best post defenders in the league, everyone agrees on that, Bartlestein said. œIs he going to average 20 points a game? No, but he can be a terrific starting center in this league.