Kwame Brown - 2001 (over Gasol)
Michael Olowokandi - 1998 (over Bibby, Vince, Jamison)
LaRue Martin - 1972 (over Bob McAdoo)
I would have to say that Kandi is the worst #1 pick of all-time because of the other options available. With LaRue Martin, the only other recognizable name I see is McAdoo at #2. With Kwame, yeah, there's Gasol but he was a big question mark coming in. That was just a weak draft. With Kandi, there were a number of obviously better players available.
The #1 picks that didn't live up to expectations in my opinion were Pervis Ellison(1989), Joe Smith(1995), Michael Olowokandi(1998), and Kwame Brown(2001).
-Pervis Ellison's situation is a bit different from the others. He is considered a bust not because of lack of skills, but because of injuries. He did average 20/11 in his third season and 17/8 in his fourth season, but injuries caught up with him and after his third season, he played in 60+ games once. He had a promising future, but some are not as fortunate as others.
-Joe Smith was a solid player, but not good for a #1 pick. He averaged 17.1 PPG/8 RPG/1.2 BPG in his first three seasons, but he was supposed to be a beast coming out of college and he never became that player in the NBA.
-Michael Olowokandi played nine seasons, and he's had only one decent season. He had a excellent start to the 2002-03 season, but he was injured for most of the season and that ended his days as a Clipper. He was never the same player.
-Kwame Brown was a hot shot coming straight out of high school. He has been injury prone his entire career and has never put together a great season. His current injury may shorten or end his career.
Kenyon Martin was pretty bad as well imo. for a first pick i expected more.
I think that is poor logic.
I think a #1 pick is only "a bad pick" if they don't pan out. Now, at the time, K-Mart was the #1 guy. No doubt. I mean, who would you honestly have taken over him? Stro Swift? Fizer? He was the guy. He's had injury problems. Out of the top 10 picks, I'd say he's still the best player today. It was just a weak draft.