Usually mastering your craft is regarded as rising to the top of your guild. The cream of the crop. The mountaintop.
But does it not take the same energy to be the bottom of your craft? No, you're right, I guess it doesn't. Still, Tyrus Thomas and DeSagana Diop have mastered the art of being completely terrible basketball players.
For one, neither can get minutes on the court right now. For the Bobcats. In the frontcourt.
Diop has been approaching this level for a while. He has a reputation for being a solid defender, but really, I think his reputation has long outlasted his actual skill level. Diop is really tall and has arms and isn't completely discombobulated on defense and can block shots, but his mobility is so limited that unless he's already planted in the paint, he's not the most difficult defender to finish around.
But what really puts him over the top is his dreadful offense. In fact, "dreadful" might be too nice a word. Here's some food for thought. Diop has taken zero shots at the rim this year. He's taken 12 shots from 16 feet out or further. But what's most surprising is that he's actually made two of those 12 shots. Just look at this shot chart. Now that's how you pick your spots well. He handles the ball as if his hands are constantly swollen past healthy levels.. At this moment, he's one of only 5 people in NBA history have played as much as him and had a true shooting percentage as bad or worse than him.
But really, I could just post this free throw video and leave it at that.
And oh, Tyrus Thomas. How much hope I once had in your potential. Tyrus' fall from promising athletic forward to bane of the Bobcats' existence has been meteoric. Marred by injuries and other problems, all of that should be mostly behind him now. Yet, he looks completely different from the player we once saw. At least years ago he used to move off the ball pretty well and get to the rim. Now, he just loves that midrange jumper and, well, little else. Like Diop, his defense isn't god-awful; it's the offense that pushes him to the elite plateau.
When your rebounding numbers trail Hakim Warrick and Jeff Adrien and your shooting efficiency trails only DeSagana Diop, you've really become something special. Tyrus Thomas has taken 83 jump shots this year. Layup, dunk, hook shot and tip shot attempts account for 18 shots, combined.
And for the icing on the cake, Tyrus Thomas has attempted three dunks this season, per Basketball-Reference.
Truly these two are Masters of Their Craft.