When the whole is less than the sum of its parts
(All summer long, SBNation's NBA blogs are running a weekly series under a given topic. This week's is The Biggest Dissapointment.)
The rest of the NBA blogs have posted theirs already. But since it's better to be late than nonexistent, here you are.
[UPDATE: I thought of this “Most Disappointing Player” exercise as a Greatest Disappointment kind of thing. That makes it a bit less about the player, and more about the entire system: how he was used on the team, how he meshed with his teammates, how he fit in on offense and defense. So, this makes it more like a "Most Disappointing Performance In A Team Setting” and less about “The Individual Who Did A Bad Job.”]
Is there any question that Richard Jefferson was the biggest disappointment in modern Spurs history? In the 2008-2009 season, his last before he came to Texas, RJ averaged 19.6 points, 5 FTA, 14 FGA. This is the player we expected. This is a player we would have enjoyed adding to the mix of Duncan, Parker and Ginobili. There were some optimistic fans that were already talking about having a Big Four in Sam Antonio.
But a year after being traded to the Spurs, he averaged 12.3 points, 3 FTA, 9 FGA. It's not just that his stats were abysmal, he also looked lost. It wasnt just on offense either, but on both ends of the court. He was a bust in every sense of the word. Things got so bad that even the ever-patient and über-understanding Tim Duncan was observed shooting Popovich sideways glances after RJ's gaffes. Not. A. Good. Sign.
So, has there ever been another Spur who appointed less ... or was more disappointing than RJ?