A lot of what determines a player’s success in the NBA is the circumstances surrounding them. Some have landed in the perfect spot that helps maximize their strengths while hiding their weaknesses. Others are never really put in the best spots to succeed, ultimately setting them up for failure.
Antoine Carr was a member of the Atlanta Hawks for five and a half seasons before being traded west to Sacramento mid-way through the 1990 campaign. During his time in the ATL, the former eighth overall pick never averaged over 20 minutes nor 10 points per game. Once he became a King, though, that all changed.
Carr was a very fundamentally sound player around the basket. He packed a lot of muscle onto his body, which helped him finish through the bruising contact of the 90s. The former Wichita State Shocker could finish around the rim off post-ups and could also step outside for a mid-range jumper every once in a while.
Upon arriving in Sacramento, Carr would immediately begin to make an impact on the offensive end, averaging 18.6 points in only 28.0 minutes per game. As an encore, he’d go to increase his scoring average to a career-best 20.1 a night on an efficient 51.1 percent shooting the following season.
It’s a shame the reason some players never wind up with a long and fruitful career is that they never found the right fit with any one organization. Carr would bounce around a few teams after his short stint with the Kings, and while he’d be a solid guy off the bench, he was never given more of an opportunity to show what he could do. Had other teams given him the minutes the Kings did, there’s no telling how his career would’ve panned out.