If there was any doubt, it is officially time to put Greg Oden’s basketball career in the rear-view mirror.
Asked whether he would ever play basketball again, Oden told the Indy Star, "I wish. It's over." He is currently on board with the Buckeyes as a student coach.
"I wouldn't say I regret anything," Oden went on. "I would say I just wish I did things better."
Oden was one of the most coveted high school recruits in recent basketball history, standing at 7-foot tall and even compared himself to Ben Wallace. After leading Lawrence North High School in Indiana to three straight state championships, being named Gatorade Player Of The Year twice, Mr. Basketball USA, Indiana Mr. Basketball, and McDonalds All-American MVP, Oden opted to play for the Ohio State Buckeyes.
In his only season in Columbus, Oden and teammate Mike Conley led Ohio State to the 2007 National Championship game, losing to Florida 84-75. Oden scored a game-high 25 points and 12 rebounds against future NBA All-Star Al Horford. Head coach Thad Matta had high praise for Oden, swearing he would become one of the greatest to ever play in the NBA.
After being drafted first overall in the 2007 NBA draft by the Portland Trail Blazers, Oden would suffer a litany of injuries. Waived by Portland in 2012, Oden sat out a season before signing with the Miami Heat. He earned little court time. After failing to make an NBA squad in 2015, Oden played in China with the Jiangsu Dragons. He has not played professionally since. At the end of all the promise and heartache, he will go down as one of the biggest draft mistakes in NBA history.
Now 28, Oden is enrolled as a sophomore at Ohio State, pursuing a career in the sports industry.