13 Most Hated Basketball Players

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In the sports world, there are players who are beloved and admired by everyone, and then there are a few whom people love to hate. Today, we will be discussing some of the most hated basketball players.

You may be surprised to learn that some of the most loved and idolized players are also some of the most despised. While their fans passionately adore them, their critics also have numerous reasons to dislike them.

One Of The Greatest Players Kobe Bryant Is Also One Of The Most Hated
One Of The Greatest Players Kobe Bryant Is Also One Of The Most Hated (Source: Bleacher Report)

While some may view certain basketball players as arrogant, dislike their personalities, or criticize their dirty tactics on the court, hate can also serve as a powerful motivator for these athletes.

It’s important to note that our presentation of the 13 most hated basketball players is not a reflection of our personal opinions. Rather, we are highlighting these players based on the general consensus among fans.

Join us as we delve into the world of basketball and explore the players who have earned the title of the most hated in the sport.

Quick Overview

Here is a preview of our most hated basketball players’ ranking.

Player Name Career
13. Dillon Brooks 2017-Present
12. Patrick Beverley 2008-Present
11. Draymond Green 2012-Present
10. Rasheed Wallace 1995-2013
9. Grayson Allen 2018-Present
8. Bill Laimbeer 1979-1993
7. Rick Barry 1965-1980
6. Latrell Sprewell 1992-2005
5. Vince Carter 1998-2020
4. Isiah Thomas 1981-1994
3. Zaza Pachulia 1999-2019
2. Bruce Bowen 1993-2009
1. LeBron James 2003-Present

Most Hated Basketball Players

Our source of reference for the article is the popular internet site BleacherReport.

13. Dillon Brooks

The Grizzlies forward, Dillon Brooks, has been in the spotlight due to some noteworthy incidents throughout this season.

Brooks has been making headlines all season, particularly regarding his ongoing feud with Draymond Green and Klay Thompson of the Warriors. 

In Game 2 of the 2022 Western Conference semifinals against the Warriors, Brooks was assessed a flagrant two and ejected from the court after he chased down the Dubs’ Gary Payton II and hit him in the head when he was in the air.

Dillon Brooks
Dillon Brooks (Source: SFGATE)

Similarly, he was ejected on February 2, 2023, after punching Cavs player Donovan Mitchell in the groin.

On March 17, NBA fined Brooks $35k after he shoved a cameraman to the floor during a game against the Heat.

Brooks is not necessarily universally hated, but he has gained a reputation for being a controversial figure on the basketball court.

Some fans and critics view him as an aggressive player who crosses the line between physical play and unsportsmanlike conduct.

12. Patrick Beverley

Number 12 on our list of the most hated basketball players is 35 year-old Patrick Beverley. He currently plays for the Chicago Bulls.

In 2008, Beverley first played for the Ukrainian professional basketball team, Dnipro. Similarly, he played for the Greek professional basketball club Olympiacos before his NBA debut with the Houston Rockets in 2013.

Patrick Beverly For Los Angeles Lakers
Patrick Beverly For Los Angeles Lakers (Source: Sports Illustrated)

Since his NBA debut, Beverley has been part of the Clippers, Lakers, and Timberwolves.

One of the reasons why he is so hated could be his intense playing style. The opponent players have often criticized Beverly for being on their faces. He has been in several publicized on-court incidents.

11. Draymond Green

On number 11, we have the 34 year-old professional basketball player Draymond Green. The four times NBA champion is currently signed with the NBA team Golden State Warriors.

Green attended Michigan State and was drafted by the Warriors 35th overall in the 2012 NBA Draft.

Draymond Green For The Golden State Warriors
Draymond Green For The Golden State Warriors (Source: Golden State of Mind)

In addition to playing for the NBA, Green was part of the Olympic U.S. men’s basketball team in 2016 and 2020. So then, why is he among the most hated players?

Green is an emotional player and is criticized for his highly physical play.

Consequently, he has been in multiple high-profile incidents during playoffs. Similarly, he is infamous for playing dirty and frequently performing technical fouls.

10. Rasheed Wallace

Rasheed Wallace is a former basketball player and our tenth-most-hated basketball player.

The 49 year-old started his professional career playing for the Washington Bullets in 1995.

Wallace forwent his remaining college year to enter the 1995 NBA Draft and was selected by the Bullets.

From 1995 to 2013, Wallace was signed by other NBA teams; Portland Trail Blazers, Atlanta Hawks, Detroit Pistons, Boston Celtics, and New York Knicks.

Rasheed Wallace For The New York Knicks
Rasheed Wallace For The New York Knicks (Source: Sports Illustrated)

Often on the court, Wallace was known for his intense style of playing. He was very expressive and frequently confronted opponent players and officials.

Similarly, he was also often involved in technical fouls and ejections. Wallace holds the league record for the most technical fouls and ejections in a season.

9. Grayson Allen

The 28 year-old Grayson Allen is a professional basketball player for the NBA team, Milwaukee Bucks. The Utah Jazz selected him as the 21st overall in the 2018 NBA Draft.

Allen made his NBA and professional debut with the Jazz. Before that, he attended Duke and was a star player.

Although he has been called one of Duke’s best players, he is among the most hated basketball players.

Grayson Allen For The Milwaukee Bucks
Grayson Allen For The Milwaukee Bucks (Source: Reuters)

In 2015, Allen helped Duke win the national championship. Several tripping incidents during the game, however, tainted his wins.

His reputation has not been better since entering NBA, either.

Allen is considered to be one of the league’s dirty players. He is often known for pulling dirty tricks like tripping and fouling the opponent players.

8. Bill Laimbeer

Next on our list of the 13 most hated basketball players we have former professional basketball player Bill Laimbeer. He was infamous for his violent and rough playing style and was part of Detroit Pistons’ “Bad Boys.”

Cleveland Cavaliers drafted him in the 1979 NBA Draft. The Cavaliers later traded him to the Pistons.

Bill Laimbeer For The Detroit Pistons
Bill Laimbeer For The Detroit Pistons (Source: Pinterest)

It was with the Pistons that Laimbeer became infamous for his notorious playing style.

He was often involved in physical and foul gameplay. Many haters considered him a thug and one of the league’s original floppers.

After playing 11 seasons with the Pistons, Laimbeer retired from his professional playing career and became a coach.

7. Rick Barry

The seventh most hated basketball player is Ricky Barry. He is one of the most prolific scorers and all-rounder basketball players but also earned a lot of hate in his professional career.

The San Francisco Warriors selected Barry as the second pick of the 1965 NBA Draft and debuted with the team.

Similarly, he also played for the Oakland Oaks, New York Nets, Golden State Warriors, and Houston Rockets.

Rick Barry For Houston Rockets
Rick Barry For Houston Rockets (Source: The Dream Shake)

Barry is the only basketball payer to lead the NCAA, ABA, and NBA points per game in a season. In addition, he was famous for his unorthodox underhand foul shots and was an arrogant basketball player.

Barry was impossible to get along with, even his teammates. His poor reputation and dirty tricks made him one of the most hated basketball players in the league.

6. Latrell Sprewell

Number 6 on our list of the 13 most hated basketball players is former professional basketball player Latrell Sprewell.

The 53 year-old made his NBA debut in 1992.

The Golden State Warriors drafted Sprewell 24th overall in the 1992 NBA Draft. Soon after his debut in the league, he grabbed everyone’s attention and was given the nickname “Spree.”

However, a talented player, Sprewell’s achievement soon got marred by an event on December 1, 1997. He attacked his then-Warriors coach P.J. Carlesimo during practice.

Latrell Sprewell For The Minnesota Timberwolves
Latrell Sprewell For The Minnesota Timberwolves (Source: Blogs en 20minutos.es: análisis y opinión – 20Minutos)

Sprewell choked and punched his coach and even threatened to kill him. Consequently, he was suspended for 68 games. It was a the-then most extended suspension in NBA history.

But it was not an isolated event, as he previously fought with his teammates. With his temper and attitude, Sprewell was hated by the fans and his teammates.

5. Vince Carter

Considered one of the greatest dunkers, Vince Carter’s leaping ability made him a famous NBA player. However, he was also one of the most hated basketball players.

Carter entered the 1998 NBA, where the Golden State Warriors selected him as the fifth overall pick. The Warriors traded him to Toronto.

Vince Carter For Atlanta Hawks
Vince Carter For Atlanta Hawks (Source: IMDb)

He established himself as a prolific three-point shooter, but while playing for the Raptors, Carter threw away his games. Similarly, he was accused of not playing to his full potential and demanded a trade.

During his career, Carter earned nicknames like Air Canada, but unfortunately, his attitude turned an entire country against him, and he became the most hated basketball player.

4. Isiah Thomas

On number 4 of our list of 13 most hated basketball players, we have former professional basketball player Isiah Thomas a Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer.

The Detroit Pistons selected Thomas as the second overall pick in the 1981 NBA Draft. He spent his entire NBA career playing for the Pistons and was among the “Bad Boys.”

Isiah Thomas For The Pistons
Isiah Thomas For The Pistons (Source: Bleacher Report)

Although there was no question about Thomas’s ability as a point guard, his attitude was.

The Bad Boys were already infamous for their dirty play, and his arrogant behavior made him unlikeable.

Then in the 1992 Olympic games, Thomas was left unselected.

The reason was his feud with Michael Jordan, who refused to play with Thomas. It further added a negative spotlight on him.

3. Zaza Pachulia

The third most hated basketball player is a former Georgian professional basketball player, Zaza Pachulia. Orlando Magic selected him in the second round during the 2003 NBA Draft.

Pachulia made his professional career debut in 1999. Turkish professional team, Ulkersport, recruited him at age 13. Now 40 year-old made his NBA debut with Orlando Magic.

The two times NBA champion also played for franchises like Milwaukee Bucks, Atlanta Hawks, Dallas Mavericks, Golden State Warriors, and Detroit Pistons.

Zaza Pachulia For The Detroit Pistons
Zaza Pachulia For The Detroit Pistons (Source: MLive.com)

Pachulia was frequently involved in intentionally injuring his opponents during his time in the league. He was involved in numerous controversial dirty plays and had a long list.

Many fellow players, coaches, and pundits criticized him for his foul play.

2. Bruce Bowen

Number 2 on our list of the most hated basketball players is former professional basketball player Bruce Bowen.

The 52 year-old was one of the feared perimeter “lockdown” defenders to play in the NBA.

Bowen began playing professionally in 1993 with Le Harve. His debut in NBA was in 1997 with the Miami Heat.

Aside from the Heat, he also played for NBA franchises like Boston Celtics, Philadelphia 76ers, and San Antonio Spurs. 

His NBA career spanned from 1997 to 2009; Bowen also gained notoriety for his dirty play.

Bruce Bowen For San Antonio Spurs
Bruce Bowen For San Antonio Spurs (Source: National Basketball Retired Players Association)

He would purposely injure his opponents in his attempt to defend. Most of the time, Bowen would run under the opponent player with the intent even to end their career.

Consequently, one of the best defenders in the league became one of the most hated players.

1. LeBron James

Believe it or not, LeBron James is one of the most beloved yet also one of the most hated players in the NBA. James currently plays for the NBA’s Los Angeles Lakers.

The Cleveland Cavaliers picked James as the first overall pick in the 2003 NBA Draft. He has established himself as one of the greatest basketball players of all time, but there are a few reasons why he is the most hated basketball player.

James is one of the most hyped NBA players in history, and thus, he has been accused of being a clout chaser. He became Cavalier fans’ hate target when he joined Miami Heat in 2010.

LeBron James For The Los Angeles Lakers
LeBron James For The Los Angeles Lakers (Source: The New York Times)

They also burned his jersey and destroyed his memorabilia in retaliation. Likewise, James has been accused of being selfish, not cooperating with his team, and having coaches removed as he likes.

James is an influential figure in the NBA. However, with love comes hate, and some people blame his every move. But James has remained on the league’s top despite his haters’ hostility.


In conclusion, the world of basketball has its fair share of controversial players who have managed to earn the title of the most hated in the sport.

From their behavior on and off the court to their trash-talking and physical altercations, these players have made a lasting impact on fans’ opinions of them.

Despite the hate they receive, these players often use it as a motivator to improve their game and prove their critics wrong. While some fans may love to hate them, others appreciate their passion and intensity on the court.

As the sport of basketball continues to evolve, it will be interesting to see which players will rise to the top and potentially earn a spot on the list of the most hated basketball players.

Boby Rai
Boby Raihttps://playersbio.com/

Boby Rai

Boby Rai is a dedicated writer who specializes in capturing the essence of sporting excellence through his unique lens. As the creative mind behind numerous sports-centric projects, he brings a fresh perspective to the world of athletics, blending insightful commentary with captivating narratives.


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  • Boby's writing transcends conventional boundaries, offering readers a glimpse into the lesser-known stories.
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Armed with a passion for sports and a gift for storytelling, Boby has honed his craft through years of immersive experiences in the field. With a keen eye for detail and an unwavering commitment to authenticity, he continues to inspire and inform readers through his thought-provoking work.

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