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.