September 26, 2021

Sarris: Reviewing five of the decade’s biggest one-season wonders, and what could have been (The Athletic)

At the end of a decade, we make lists. Lists populated mostly with positivity: the best movies, the best books, the best players. Occasionally, those lists will wander to the other side of the seesaw and explore the worst of the last 10 years. Somehow, making a list of the biggest one-year wonders manages to end up somewhere in between the two extremes. It’s awarding someone a backhanded compliment: Best flash in the pan.

So instead of denigrating these players, and pointing out that their best seasons were way better than their second-best seasons, let’s travel into an alternate universe — a decade in which these shining years weren’t outliers. Let’s imagine that these big years were breakouts instead of flukes. What would these careers look like? How might history be altered?

In order to find five candidates for this strange thought experiment, we searched for the biggest discrepancies between a player’s best year and their…

Click here to read the whole article at The Athletic