30 NBA players who were traded before becoming stars

Kobe Bryant, Tracy McGrady
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28. Jermaine O'Neal

Six-time NBA All-Star Jermaine O'Neal had one of the more unorthodox careers. O'Neal was drafted straight out of high school back in 1996 and spent 4 years with the Portland Trail Blazers, but failed to carve out a large role with the team.

As a result, he was shipped to the Indiana Pacers in 2000, where he quickly made a name for himself. O'Neal blossomed into a star, making six straight All-Star teams and even finishing third in MVP voting in 2003-04 after leading the Pacers to a 61-21 record.

Heading into the 2004–05 season, they were considered to be among the favorites to win the championship before the "Malice at the Palace" happened. That ugly incident derailed the Pacers title chances and spelled the beginning of the end for O'Neal's time in Indiana. He would make two more all-star appearances but struggled to stay healthy over his final three seasons in Indiana, leading to his being moved to Toronto in 2008.

At the age of 29, he experienced a steep drop in production and quickly became a journeyman, making stops in Miami, Boston, Phoenix, and Golden State before retiring at the age of 35. Still, at his peak, O'Neal was one of the better players in the NBA, after the Blazers traded him to Indiana.