I know Shawne has us in a tizzy, but with Oden now facing a looksee at his knee following an unimpressive summer as well as the hand issue last year, the idea of bust has to be creeping into the backs of some minds. In fact I think it was on PTI that the names of Walton and Bowie were brought up, 2 other short lived high draft pick bigs for Portland.
The reason I mention Bender is that for many I think the thought was that if he'd gone to college he either would have flopped or his injury issue might have shown up sooner. I disagree since he didn't even get his big contract till after playing a full NBA season, but the timing still isn't that far off of what could be happening with Oden.
Super high potential, gets a year or two out of high school but doesn't really get going in the NBA before chronic injury issues pop up, career fizzles out quickly.
Naturally it's WAY WAY too soon to say this about Oden, but considering the buzz around him can you imagine if Indy had hit the lottery for that pick, drafted him, and were now facing these possible injury issues? You don't think the negative views and "oh no" comments would be flying, along with "the Pacers are jinxed".
I guess for me I'm a little bit relieved that the Pacers aren't facing that situation right now, not after Bender. Naturally since it's Portland and not Indy, Greg will be just fine and go on to have a HOF career. If it was Indy he'd probably have been driving Shawne's car the other night and crashed into the canal by the USS Indianapolis memorial.