Meet the new face of the NBA Villain in Dwight Howard. Gone are the days of hating LeBron and the Miami Three. Winning a title kind of neutralizes the hate, so now Dwight Howard has become the face of pure evil in the NBA. Don’t get me wrong, I am in no way inferring that LeBron and Howard are bad people but with their decisions and the way they have carried themselves publicly, they have become the most hated players in the NBA.
While LeBron seems to have gotten the monkey off his back, Dwight Howard is only making things worse on himself. His constant wavering on what he wants to do has left an entire franchise in limbo. The drama seemed to be over when Howard agreed to opt in for the final year of his contract but his recent claims that he was “blackmailed” into doing so have made him public enemy number one, not only in Orlando but across the country.
With up to 23 former Kentucky Wildcats in the NBA next season, I started to wonder if any of our former Wildcats had the potential to become public enemy number one in the NBA? Granted, pretty much all of the former Wildcats have been model citizens in the NBA and there really has not been that much drama. And keep in mind it is going to take a high profile player to ascend into legendary villain status. Both James and Howard were the number one picks in the draft and all the drama came about because of how they handled extricating themselves from the teams that drafted them.
So what makes a great villain? There is a bit of criteria and it starts with a A) tenuous relationship with team mates and the head coach and it extends to B) being a cancer on the team and in the locker room. Finally that player has C) burnt his bridges in his teams town and the fans just want him gone or D) he leaves the team as a free agent but does so in a way that reviles him to almost everyone.
Could the same type of drama cause our beloved former Wildcats to draw the same type of vile? Some Kentucky fans would consider Daniel Orton a villain, but his impact on the NBA is not near big enough and he really has not caused any drama in Orlando. If you blink, you will miss him. I did however, find three candidates from all the former Wildcats and will look to see what their potential for is of becoming the next great NBA villian.