Ice Cube's Big 3 draft was as utterly ridiculous as you might imagine

Ball Don't Lie
Ice Cube opened the Big 3 draft. (Getty Images)
Ice Cube opened the Big 3 draft. (Getty Images)

In February, when more details of Ice Cube’s Big 3 basketball league were emerging, from the four-point shot to the inclusion of Allen Iverson and Ricky DavisI was irrationally excited, and the fact this past weekend’s draft was replete with utter nonsense has only bolstered that irrational excitement.

Seriously, get a load of this nonsense:

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• First of all, the draft was in Vegas, and Iverson — a coach, player, captain and the league’s most marketable participant — didn’t even bother to show up. His co-captain, DerMarr Johnson, had to pick their 3’s Company roster for him and selected Andre Owens, Mike Sweetney and Ruben Patterson, which I can only assume was a calculated decision to ensure Iverson gets all the shots this summer.

• Smush Parker, or, as Kobe Bryant refers to him, “the worst,” went to the draft, told ESPN’s Arash Markazi, “I could still play in the NBA,” and then went undrafted. He turns 36 years old in June.


Among other players who were invited to participate in the Big 3 combine on the eve of the draft, and then went undrafted: Kenny Anderson, Keith Bogans, Earl Boykins, Steve Francis, Pops Mensah-Bonsu, Lawrence Moten, Jamario Moon, J.R. Rider, Latrell Sprewell and Etan Thomas. Like, they went to Vegas:


• Stephen Jackson told For The Win’s Alysha Tsuji the Big 3 could put together an NBA playoff team:

From this point forward, I started asking if these guys thought they could actually help an NBA team today. “Definitely,” said Stephen Jackson. He later added, “If we took 15 guys from this league, we could compete in the playoffs today.”

And a 40-year-old Bonzi Wells, who hasn’t played in the NBA since 2008, actually agreed, via FTW:

“Definitely, we got enough guys on this stage that could play with anybody. We’ve got experience,” Wells said, while standing on stage with all of the coaches, captains and selected players after the draft. “We’ve been there, done that. It’s not like we’re some scrubs. With our experience, we could manage any game and make sure we’re in it, if not win it.”

I sincerely hope by, “if not win it,” Wells meant the championship. These guys are the absolute best.

• Kwame Brown, famously drafted No. 1 overall by Michael Jordan’s Washington Wizards in the 2001 NBA Draft and still only 35, dropped to fifth in Sunday’s Big 3 draft. And he was not happy about it.


It’s unclear whether anyone told Brown that Charles Oakley is not a man you want to be trifling with. James Dolan learned that the hard way. (For the record, Oakley, 53, is listed as a player/coach.)

• The aforementioned Markazi, one of the few national media members in attendance for a draft that was taking place during the NBA Playoffs on Sunday, was allegedly shoved twice for standing too close to Ice Cube while asking the league’s founder questions. Quite the publicity for a fledgling product.


• Asked if he was excited about being a coach in the eight-team league, Julius “Dr. J” Erving, the Big 3’s other most high-profile participant beyond Iverson, said, “I don’t think excited is the right term”:


A ringing endorsement from the good doctor. Hopefully those security guards don’t hear about this.

• Another coach, 48-year-old Gary Payton, seemingly didn’t know his age, asked, “Why would I want to play” at age 49? And then promptly drafted a 48-year-old Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf with his third pick.


For the record, a 32-year-old Rashad McCants was the No. 1 overall pick, which seems entirely defensible, Owens went second to Iverson’s team, even though A.I. wasn’t there, which seems entirely indefensible, and Reggie Evans — in the NBA as recently as 2015 — went third. The full draft order:

1. Trilogy: Rashad McCants
2. 3’s Company: Andre Owens
3. Killer 3s: Reggie Evans
4. Tri-State: Xavier Silas
5. Three-Headed Monsters: Kwame Brown
6. Power: Jerome Williams
7. Ball Hogs: Derrick Byars
8. Ghost Ballers: Maurice Evans
9. Ghost Ballers: Marcus Banks
10. Ball Hogs: Rasual Butler
11. Power: DeShawn Stevenson
12. Three-Headed Monsters: Eddie Basden
13. Tri-State: Lee Nailon
14. Killer 3s: Larry Hughes
15. 3’s Company: Michael Sweetney
16. Trilogy: James White
17. Three-Headed Monsters: Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf
18. Ball Hogs: Dominic McGuire
19. Trilogy: Dion Glover
20. Power: Moochie Norris
21. 3’s Company: Ruben Patterson
22. Ghost Ballers: Ivan Johnson
23. Tri-State: Mike James
24. Killers 3s: Brian Cook

And here are the final team breakdowns:


Those are some solid squads. I feel like Oakley’s Chauncey Billups, Captain Jack, Reggie Evans, Larry Hughes and Brian Cook roster is stacked. The Corey Maggette, Cuttino Mobley, Jerome Williams, DeShawn Stevenson and Moochie Norris quintet is fascinating for many reasons, like Moochie’s hair:

The Big 3 brings the return of an epic Moochie Norris-Jason Williams rivalry rooted in hair.
The Big 3 brings the return of an epic Moochie Norris-Jason Williams rivalry rooted in hair.

I’m excited for the reunion between Ricky Davis and Marcus Banks, who played three mostly hilarious seasons together on the Boston Celtics and Minnesota Timberwolves. I’m excited for a league that will pit Brian Scalabrine against Mike Sweetney in 2017. This is utter nonsense, and I’m excited about it.

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Ben Rohrbach is a contributor for Ball Don’t Lie and Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at rohrbach_ben@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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