The 2011 NBA Draft has proven to be one of the deepest classes in recent memory.
The draft was so deep that 29 teams missed one of the best prospects — Isaiah Thomas.
The Kings took Thomas with the very last pick, No. 60, completely unaware that the diminutive 5-foot-9 guard from Washington would become this generation’s Allen Iverson — a spunky, athletic, crafty scorer defences can’t stop.
After stops in Sacramento and Phoenix, Thomas became the star of the Celtics, helping them win the No. 1 seed in the East in 2017. Now, he’s been used as the centrepiece for a trade with the first overall pick of the 2011 draft, Kyrie Irving, in a blockbuster deal between the Celtics and Cavaliers.
Here are some of the players drafted before Thomas that NBA teams are probably kicking themselves over today.
Irving's stint with the Cavs was a prosperous one, and he will forever cherished in Cleveland for sealing the 2016 championship with the game-winning three-pointer. But after he grew tired of playing second fiddle to LeBron, he requested a trade and was moved to Boston, with the Cavs getting Thomas and other assets in return.
Butler has developed to become one of the NBA's best two-way players and a perennial All-Star. The Bulls traded Butler to the Timberwolves during the 2017 offseason in an effort to get pieces for a rebuild.
Vesely played three seasons in the NBA, averaging 3.6 points per game. He now plays for Turkish team Fenerbache.
The Timberwolves took Donatas Motiejunas with the 20th pick in the draft and later traded him to the Rockets.
Smith played just 84 games in two seasons. He is now a special assistant on Duke's men's basketball team.
Williams played just one season in the NBA. According to The Washington Post, Williams was charged with kidnapping and robbery in January 2017.
The Lakers took Chukwudiebere Maduabum with the 57th pick. He never played in the NBA and now plays in Japan, though his draft rights have been passed around the NBA, currently owned by the 76ers.
The Wolves took Tanguy Ngombo with the 57th pick. Ngombo never played after it was revealed he was actually 26 years old and draft ineligible. He now plays in Qatar.
The Lakers took Ater Majok with the 58th pick. He hasn't played in the NBA and currently plays in Lebanon. The Bulls own his rights.
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