3. Pau Gasol, 2017: 3 years, $48M
After Pau’s All-Star season with Chicago in 2016, the Spurs were able to nab him on a one-year deal. Tim Duncan had just retired, and the team brought in the elder Gasol to help stabilize a position that was in flux for the first time in 20 years. For that first year, he did just that, averaging 12.4 points and 7.8 rebounds and taking a step back to let Kawhi and LaMarcus dominate.
The Spurs, of course, were swept in the Western Conference Finals that season. The “mistake” signing happened during the subsequent offseason, when the team decided to re-up on Gasol’s contract, giving him considerably more money than his market value. San Antonio has always valued a veteran presence, and Pau served that role well. As Gasol aged and the Spurs collapsed amid the Kawhi drama, his on-court performance didn’t hold up.