10. Brian Cook
Cook was the 24th pick in the 2003 NBA Draft by the Lakers. The Kobe and Shaq days were winding down, and the 6’9 big man had an intriguing skill set. He was a shooter and floor spacer, but could he round out his game?
Cook rarely played as a rookie appearing in just 35 games and playing a total of 442 minutes. The Lakers lost to the Pistons in the NBA Finals and Shaq was traded to the Heat. Cook played a bit more in year two before having his best season in year three.
The 6’9 big man averaged 7.9 points and 3.4 rebounds in 19.0 minutes as he started 46 of his 81 games played. Cook shot 51.1 percent from the field and 42.9 percent from 3-point range. His playing time decreased in the postseason to 11.1 minutes per game and the Lakers were bounced by the Suns in the first round.
Things went downhill from there. Brian Cook played less and shot worse in his fourth NBA season and played in just six contests in 2007 before being traded in a package for Trevor Ariza. The 6’9 big man stayed four more years in the NBA, but never averaged more than 13 minutes per game. He was not a starter, despite making 74 next to Kobe Bryant in LA.