In 1984 Kentucky center Sam Bowie entered the NBA draft and, after the Houston Rockets selected Hakeem Olajuwon with the top overall pick, the Portland Trail Blazers took Bowie over North Carolina shooting guard Michael Jordan with the second selection.
Of course, Jordan was picked third by the Chicago Bulls, and the rest is history. "Air Jordan" would go on to be one of the greatest players in basketball history, earning five Most Valuable Player trophies and winning six NBA Championships.
Fast forward to 2007. The Blazers select can't miss center Greg Oden from Ohio State over sensational scoring threat Kevin Durant.
It might be quite the stretch to compare Durant to Jordan, but there's little question that the former Texas star is going to develop into one of the NBA's best scorers over the next decade.
Oden, meanwhile, missed his rookie season after undergoing microfracture surgery on his right knee and, after over 500 days between real games, he was diagnosed with a mid-foot sprain after landing awkwardly in the Blazers' season-opening 96-76 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday.
The injury had disaster written all over it. "Lisfranc" was on the tip of everyone's lips, but afraid to be muttered.
Finally, the Blazers were able to breathe a sigh of relief on Wednesday when an MRI and CAT scan confirmed Oden had a mid-lateral right foot sprain and will miss only two to four weeks.
Still, leg injuries to a 7-foot, 285-pound men aren't exactly comforting.
Hindsight is the only exact science in sports, and with that firmly in their corner, many experts have called Portland's decision to draft Bowie one of the worst moves in NBA history.
Sports Illustrated even called the former Kentucky standout the biggest NBA draft bust ever. A ridiculous statement considering Bowie was a supremely talented player that finished his NBA career averaging 10.9 points, 7.5 rebounds and 1.78 blocks per game.
The label of "bust" is tagged on Bowie thanks to the injuries and Jordan. However, few remember at the time of the '84 draft, Bowie was the logical choice for the Blazers since the team had just selected Hall of Famer Clyde Drexler, a shooting guard, during the prior season.
Lightning may be on the verge of striking twice in Portland.
At the time of his selection, few disagreed that Oden was the right choice but the injuries could derail everything.
Meanwhile, twenty years from now, if Durant is cobbling together his induction speech for the Naismith Hall of Fame and other players from the '07 draft like Atlanta power forward Al Horford and Sixers swingman Thaddeus Young develop into perennial All-Stars, the revisionists will be back, ridiculing the Blazers and breaking out the "bust" word all over again.
The truth is always far less interesting.
Sometimes it all boils down to luck, and the Trail Blazers aren't feeling all that lucky right now.