For the sake of argument I have phrased the title of this blog in the form of a question, but make no mistake about it Gilbert Arenas is bad for basketball. If you don't believe me ask Ted Leonsis (Washington Wizards owner) Billy Hunter (President of the NBAPA) or the marketing director for Adidas (if he still has his job). Gilbert Arenas is exactly the type of player NOBODY wants to be associated with.
Ownership can't stand Gilbert Arenas because talent wise he's worth $111,000,000 over 6 years, but if you factor in injuries and off the court distractions he's worth about $111,000 over that same period of time. At this point his shenanigans have rendered him virtually impossible to trade. Who wants to pay $17,730,694 a season for a player that doesn't know better than to tweet at halftime, bring guns into a locker room, or fake an injury.
The NBAPA can't stand Gilbert Arenas because he's jeopardizes the status of the guaranteed contract. If you're sitting across from David Stern during negotiations how do you defend your position when the question comes up, "How do we avoid having another Gilbert Arenas situation?" The answer is so obvious a 7 year old could tell you. DON'T GUARANTEE THE CONTRACTS! I don't think the players association is willing to rescind the status quo for the actions of one player. A lock out is almost inevitable.
Fans and merchandising companies can't stand Gilbert Arenas because he's fickle and aloof with a personality that's difficult to grasp. You never know what to expect from the guy. Sometimes you wonder if he cares about anything and sometimes you wonder by his actions if he truly understands the difference between right and wrong. At any rate he's not somebody you can whole heartedly endorse without a great deal of reservation.
All of this doesn't make Gilbert Arenas a bad person. I'm sure he takes care of his family, donates to charity, and helps out countless individuals in need. Ultimately his talent has cursed him because with great talent comes great expectation. Gilbert the person is excelling in that aspect. Gilbert the basketball persona is failing miserably. I hope he turns it around. It would be better for everyone.