The Washington Bullets missed the chance to draft Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash after trading for Chris Webber.
The when did kobe get drafted is a question that has been asked many times, but nobody knows the answer. The Washington Bullets missed the chance to draft Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash after trading for Chris Webber.
The Washington Wizards (previously known as the ‘Bullets’) lost out on a huge opportunity to sign two great players who might have catapulted this club to new heights. Unfortunately, a series of rash choices jeopardized their hopes of assembling a fantastic backcourt including Kobe Bryant and Steven Nash.
Chris Webber was a top player in his class, as shown by his achievements. He was on the verge of winning a championship with the Sacramento Kings and perhaps establishing a dynasty there, but life had other ideas.
Webber’s squad couldn’t acquire the quality they needed to contend because of the former Michigan Wolverine, just as things didn’t work out for him when pursuing the NBA title. After acquiring C-Webb in 1994, the Bullets lost out on a huge opportunity to sign Kobe Bryant and Steve Nash a few years later.
Webber put up impressive statistics in his debut season with the Golden State Warriors (17.5 points, 9.1 rebounds, and 2.2 blocks per game), but his relationship with head coach Don Nelson was strained. Nelson wanted Webber to play more as a center, but the player didn’t want to face huge names like Hakeem Olajuwon, Patrick Ewing, Shaquille O’Neal, David Robinson, and others, according to Sports Casting’s Tim van Straten.
The Dubs were forced to trade Webber to the Bullets as a result of this predicament. Initially, this seemed to be a terrific bargain for Washington, but two years later, they discovered that this was not the case.
The Bullets (who wouldn’t become the Wizards until 1997) opted to have Webber go sooner rather than later. After a 24-58 season, the Wizards agreed to a sign-and-trade with Golden State, sending three first-round choices and Tom Gugliotta in return for the reigning Rookie of the Year.
Washington gave up their first-round selections in 1996, 1998, and 2000 as part of the Webber trade. While the later two didn’t have much of an effect, the 1996 draft was a huge miscalculation.
In 1996, they possessed two high draft selections and traded one in the Webber deal. The other was dealt to the Cleveland Cavaliers for Mark Price at that year’s draft.
Washington boasted one of the league’s youngest and most interesting frontcourts at the time. Webber, Juwan Howard, and Rasheed Wallace, all former Fab 5 teammates, created a trio of 22-and-under players with All-Star potential. However, with a youthful frontcourt, the Bullets desired backcourt experience. As a result, the Washington Wizards traded their 12th overall selection to the Cleveland Cavaliers in exchange for four-time All-Star Mark Price.
With Webber taking the 11th selection and Price taking the 12th, the Bullets only had one player in the star-studded 1996 NBA Draft: Ronnie Henderson, who never played in an NBA game. Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash, Jermaine O’Neal, and Peja Stojakovic would have been available if Washington had kept at least one of those selections.
The NBA draft of 1996 is widely regarded as one of the greatest in the league’s history. It had a plethora of talents who would go on to become gaming legends. If the Bullets’ front staff had been a little more patient in 1994, they might have acquired two all-time greats.
Webber did not have the greatest time in Washington, D.C. In 1996/97, he only reached the playoffs once, losing in the first round. He was traded to Sacramento in exchange for Mitch Richmond after one season. That transfer was the greatest thing that could have happened to Webber’s career, as it allowed him to find his place in the world while leading the Kings to become a competitive team in the Western Conference in the early 2000s.
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