Top 10 Worst NBA Fails Ever

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Top 10 Worst NBA Fails Ever

VOICE OVER: Julian McKenzie WRITTEN BY: Whitney Wilson
These basketball fails deserve to be in the Hall of Shame. For this list, we'll be looking at times when NBA players definitely didn't understand the assignment, completely missed baskets or made attempts at grandeur and failed spectacularly. Our countdown includes Tony Parker's Free Throw Falls Very Short, Nick Young Celebrates Too Early, Brandon Knight Misses a Game-Winning Layup, and more!
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Top 10 NBA Fails


Welcome to WatchMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 NBA Fails.

For this list, we’ll be looking at times when NBA players definitely didn’t understand the assignment, completely missed baskets or made attempts at grandeur and failed spectacularly.

What NBA fail makes you feel a little better about your own basketball skills? Be sure to share with us in the comments below.


#10: Brandon Knight Misses a Game-Winning Layup


Bucks vs. Nets (2014)

To kick off our list, let’s take a look at a moment that went from glory to guffaw in a split second. With the clock down to seconds and the game tied, Milwaukee guard Brandon Knight intercepted a pass from the Nets. He had a wide-open look for a layup to break the tie, and it looked like the Bucks would be able to automatically put a tick in the win column. Unfortunately, Knight put too much power behind the ball, causing him to miss the layup. This error sent the game into double overtime, where Knight thankfully redeemed himself and helped Milwaukee win the game.



#9: Kwame Brown & Luke Walton Score for the Wrong Team


Rockets vs. Lakers (2007)

Nowadays, many know Luke Walton as a coach, but back in 2007, he was a starting forward for the Los Angeles Lakers. During the Lakers’ 2007 season opener at the Staples Center, Walton and center Kwame Brown intercepted the ball from the Houston Rockets. Unfortunately, both players let the ball bounce a little longer than it should have and before you know it, Walton actually put two points on the board for the wrong team, much to the horror of their fans, fellow players and coaches. To add insult to ineptitude, the Lakers lost the game by, you guessed it, two points.


#8: Marcelo Huertas' Backwards Three-Point Attempt

Lakers vs. Heat (2015)

Three-pointers are hard enough to make, so why would anyone try to make them even more difficult than they already are? During this game against the Miami Heat, Lakers point guard Marcelo Huertas tried to pull off a miracle but just ended up making a mistake. In the second quarter, he attempted a three-point field goal, which was blocked. Huertas recovered the ball and had another opportunity to score three points. Unfortunately, instead of doing the sensible thing and just trying for a regular shot, Huertas attempted to make a backwards basket. Of course, this terrible decision resulted in a lackluster airball and ended the half on an embarrassing note for the Lakers.


#7: Von Wafer Celebrates a Missed Dunk and Runs Into His Own Teammate


Celtics vs. Wizards (2011)

Confidence is a key to success, but sometimes, too much confidence can prove costly. Unfortunately, this was the case for Von Wafer back in 2011. During a game against the Washington Wizards, Wafer lost control during the dunk, resulting in the ball bouncing out of the basket. The Dutch Cookie didn’t seem to notice that his dunk failed, and he stared down the crowd, celebrating the embarrassing moment. To make matters even worse, he bumped into his teammate during the celebration as his fellow Celtics tried to salvage the possession behind him.


#6: Tony Parker's Free Throw Falls Very Short

Bulls vs. Spurs (2014)

From Shaq to Giannis, you wouldn’t believe the amount of star players who’ve experienced their fair share of troubles when it comes to making free throws. However, even they never made an attempt this terrible. As an 80 percent free throw shooter, it was almost guaranteed that Spurs point guard Tony Parker would make the bucket. Either the ball slipped in his hands or the referee said something that threw off Parker. Regardless, his shot only traveled about five feet before sadly bouncing off the floor. The ref showed mercy and allowed him a do-over, which he made. Don’t feel too bad for Parker, though. Later that year, he and the Spurs would go on to win their fourth NBA Championship in 11 years.


#5: Larry Nance, Jr. Scores for the Wrong Los Angeles Team


Lakers vs. Clippers (2015)

Larry Nance, Jr., decided to take the holiday spirit to another level during a Christmas Day game between the Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers in 2015. In the first quarter of the game, Clippers point guard Chris Paul attempted a three-pointer but missed. When Nance, Jr., tried to grab the ball for a rebound, he instead launched it into the net, giving two points to the Clippers. Thankfully, Nance, Jr., has a good sense of humor, and after the game, he tweeted, “Maybe I should take up volleyball as a hobby.”


#4: Andrea Bargnani Tries to Take Flight

Knicks vs. 76ers (2014)

It isn’t necessarily a terrible idea to try to be a hero during a game, but you shouldn’t try to fly unless you know you can do so. During a 2014 game, Knicks big man Andrea Bargnani had possession of the ball. Rather than pass it to a wide-open Carmelo Anthony, he decided to push the limits of his athleticism instead. Bargani attempted to jump over two defenders to dunk the ball, but ended up face-down in the paint, with the ball subsequently hitting him in the head as he fell. To add injury to insult, Bargani tore a ligament in his elbow during this failed dunk, which resulted in him missing the rest of the season.


#3: Ricky Davis' Bizarre Attempt at a Triple-Double

Cavaliers vs. Jazz (2003)

Triple-doubles are the mark of a well-rounded player. They show that players shine both as individuals and as teammates. During a 2003 game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Utah Jazz, Ricky Davis was one rebound short of his first NBA triple-double, and he attempted a move we can only call the self-rebound. His bizarre move angered the other team so much that Utah’s DeShawn Stevenson fouled him hard. And the worst part? Davis wasn’t even credited for the rebound, so he didn’t get the triple-double he so desperately wanted.


#2: Nick Young Celebrates Too Early


Lakers vs. Knicks (2014)

While we were considering putting his layup attempt on this list, we opted to go with the more memorable gaffe of his career. So although this sports gaffe proved inconsequential to the final outcome of the game, we doubt Nick Young’s teammates let him forget about this gaffe anytime soon. During this 2014 game against the Knicks, Young pulled up for a three and took the shot; he was so confident that the ball would go in that he turned around and raised his arms. Unfortunately for him, the ball bounced off of the basket. The Lakers may have won, but Nick Young was definitely the night’s big loser.


Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

Alexey Shved's Very High Shot Attempt
What Was He Thinking?


The Most Bizarre Start to a Game in NBA History
The 76ers and Timberwolves Get Mixed up & Go to the Wrong Baskets


Jordan Crawford’s Pass Attempt
Perhaps He Thought the Coach Wanted the Ball?


Going Otto Pilot
Apparently Otto Porter, Jr., Forgot He’s Playing & Allows Tony Snell to Run Right Past Him


Melo’s Tumble
We’ll Give Him an A+ For Effort


#1: JaVale McGee's Missed Dunk


Kings vs. Wizards (2010)

During his first four years in the NBA, Wizards center JaVale McGee made some very questionable choices on the court. From attempting to make moves way too fancy for his wheelhouse (xref)* to running to the wrong end of the court (xref)**, he didn’t always have the highest basketball IQ. His worst moment, however, came during this 2010 game against the Kings. With only 20 seconds left on the clock, the Wizards were down by 25. McGee stole the ball and had a clear shot to make the basket. Instead, he attempted to make a dunk from the free-throw line. Of course, he missed in spectacular fashion, wrapping up the blowout on the most embarrassing note in NBA history.
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