There are many reasons to have hatred or dislike towards a specific player in the NBA. Some fans just love to hate, whether it’s a star player from a rival team or perhaps you just don’t like the way he comes across. Many of the NBA’s most disliked are hated for the same reason: they come across as arrogant. Others are hated because they play dirty or are consummate actors. Some are hated just because they just know how to win and have the ability to get in your favorite player’s head. The league’s most hated probably have a little of all of the above.
Don’t get it twisted, either. Players can be both loved AND hated. In fact, most of the league’s best (and most popular) players get hated on more than anyone else. Think about it. Kobe Bryant draws a lot of attention; Dahntay Jones doesn’t.
Whatever the reason of hate may be, here are the 10 most hated players in the Association right now:
Metta World Peace
To be honest, Metta has become more likable as of late and while he has a corky personality, his Twitter handle provides pure entertainment for any NBA fan. His most recent incident can be seen below when he concussed the Beard with a vicious elbow during OKC’s trip to Los Angeles late in 2012. World Peace has passed his prime for being one of the NBA’s most hated players but after playing on a team that has Kenyon Martin, J.R. Smith and Carmelo Anthony this upcoming season, the formerly known Artest could regain the hate of many casual fans.
Barnes is another dude fans and players universally love to hate. You might remember when Barnes played for the Magic as him and Kobe would have a few scuffles during their matchups, including the one posted below. However, it is no accident that Kobe later reached out to Barnes to have him join his squad. Barnes is the classic example of a guy you hate to play against but love to have on your team and the Mamba’s approval is an authentic representation of that. Fans feel the same.
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10. RAY ALLEN
Ray Allen is hated for two reasons. Allen is hated by many Celtics fans for the way that he left Boston but after almost being dealt by Danny Ainge on two separate occasions at the trade deadline, it was a long time coming. Fans who once called him “Jesus” Shuttlesworth switched to “Judas” as they claimed he had betrayed them. While this is a controversial reason for his hate, the biggest reason that he is disliked across the league is because he is just so damn clutch.
You have probably been victim to watching your home team lose the game to a Ray Allen buzzer-beater at one point or another and for that reason alone, you hate him. While other players on this list may be hated for something other than their talent level, Ray is mostly hated across the league for just hitting big shots against your favorite team. He also did kick Manu Ginobili in the balls.
9. ANDREW BYNUM
Where do we begin? Andrew Bynum and his 70-year-old knees are most hated as of late due to Philadelphia dishing out young assets for the big man who never even put on the Sixer uniform. While he was in rehab, Bynum was criticized for his immaturity after setting back his knee rehab because a bowling injury.
After Philly’s Bynum experiment failed, the injury-plagued big man bolted for Cleveland of all places and dropped a bomb on the Los Angeles fan base by stating that he has “never played for a city that stands up and supports their team.” To make matters worse, L.A. got the short end of the stick as well in the four-way Bynum deal by receiving a one year rental of Dwight Howard, so yeah… pretty much every fan hates Andrew Bynum.
8. CHRIS BOSH
If this were a list of the NBA players who are clowned on the most, Bosh would be at the top of the list for looking, in many fans’ eyes, like a pterodactyl/dinosaur, but we got him locked in at eight instead on the NBA’s most hated. Bosh is a very talented face up four who obviously has been forced to play out of position during his time in Miami. The problem many have with him is how he goes about playing the position.
The Georgia Tech product is perceived as soft and regularly turns to flopping as his regular gameplan. While Bosh certainly came down with the biggest rebound of the playoffs in Game 6 of the Finals, Heat fans across social media timelines everywhere were ready to ship him out ASAP after his abysmal series against Indiana, in which he averaged 4.3 rebounds per contest.
7. JOAKIM NOAH
The level of respect that fans and NBA players have for Joakim Noah’s work ethic, heart and desire is unprecedented, but Noah falls under the same category as Matt Barnes: love to have him on your team but hate to play against him.
Noah was hated for a long time in Boston after becoming public enemy No. 1 for KG. Noah also was also hated by Cleveland fans and is still hated by LeBron fans (aka Miami bandwagon fans) for dissing the city that the King once played in. Noah also has expressed his hatred for the Miami Heat and claimed that he couldn’t stand watching the Heat grab another title this season.
6. KEVIN GARNETT
It’s no wonder that though they turned rivals, Noah looked up to the Big Ticket as a young player because KG is hated for the same reason as Noah: his intensity. If you have ever had the privilege to see the aging Garnett play in person, it is a sight to be seen. KG may have lost a step athletically at age 37, but the new Brooklyn big man can still affect the game in so many ways, with the most hated being his ability to bully other players.
Just like you hate Ray Allen for his game-winners against your favorite team, Garnett is hated for getting into the heads of one of your favorite players. If Knick fans hated him before for torching them for years with buzzer-beaters, dominating performances and the Honey Nut Cheerios incident, they’re really going to hate him now with Garnett trying to hand the Nets the crown of New York.
5. KOBE BRYANT
Kobe is still hated but as one of the NBA’s most driven players, the respect for his approach and work ethic is starting to outgrow his overall hate as his championship window closes. Once upon a time, Kobe was hated for being a champion because people love to hate a winner. Kobe also is still one of the best trash-talkers in the NBA. With him recently crushing his Achilles rehab, you have to respect the guy.
He still carries a high level of hate around with him but it’s not the type that you pass up buying his sneakers for. As we look back on his career, Kobe’s hate will be viewed as similar to Jordan as it will be credited to his competitive nature, not him being a diva.
4. DWYANE WADE
It’s a must that Wade cracks the top five as he is perceived by many as the NBA’s dirtiest player. While Wade may have not been as hated before LeBron came to South Beach, the decision brought a lot of hate to the Heatles. Not only does Wade arguably turn to bush league tactics to help him win but he loves to flop as well. Watch the clip below as Wade unnecessarily brings down Rajon Rondo with him, dislocating his elbow as a result.
3. KRIS HUMPHRIES
The Hump is not hated because he talks trash or is a dirty player. He is primarily hated because was a reality TV sellout who came across as arrogant during his E! Network tenure. If it was any reality TV show it would be one thing, but the fact that he got married to Kim Kardashian and was on her show was just a bad PR move for his career. While he flew under the radar before the relationship, at least Humphries will always carry that attention with him, even if it is negative. Maybe he’ll be able to fly back under the radar as long as he can stay away from reality TV, but I’m not sure that’s what he really wants.
2. LeBRON JAMES
The two-time champion has helped repair his reputation by silencing his critics with his two rings but the hate is definitely still there, making him perhaps the NBA’s most hated player. Hate for LeBron was at an all-time high after his infamous “Decision” in which all of Cleveland and ownership found out that he was leaving the state he grew up in on national television. Seven words forever damaged the King’s image: “I’m taking my talents to South Beach.” He also went on to predict the amount of championships that the Heat would win with their new Big Three: “Not five, not six, not seven…”
Since then, LeBron basically told his haters that their life still sucks after Dirk shattered Miami’s championship aspirations in 2011. While 2012 and 2013 have brought LeBron and the Heat championships, the jokes haven’t stopped, Skip Bayless hasn’t stopped hating and LBJ is still viewed by almost everyone other than Heat fans as one of the NBA’s biggest cry babies. He’s certainly up there in Academy Awards as well with his acting skills earning him the majority of foul calls.
And while he did take care of business this season becoming a back-to-back champion, his perceived arrogance was once again in the spotlight when Nike‘s two-time champion prototype was leaked during the middle of the NBA Finals.
1. DWIGHT HOWARD
It’s definitely debatable that Dwight may be the NBA’s most hated after the Dwightmare Part II this summer. Only Dwight can get two separate organizations to hate him in a matter of two years. D12 definitely had his injury woes and his problems with Kobe, but reportedly demanding that Mike D’Antoni get fired (which most agree with) and making sure that Kobe only plays one year are pretty serious demands for someone who’s never won anything. While Dwightmare Part II was not entirely his fault as Lakers management added to their plethora of many recent mistakes, the way that things went down in Orlando is 100 percent a result of his immaturity. Howard couldn’t make up his mind, and then picked up his one year option before finally demanding a trade. Now that his Indecision is over, maybe he’ll be able to clean up his reputation in H-Town.
What do you think?
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