There are three main ways to be bad in the NBA.
One is the current Rockets way, to rebuild. To start over in the cycle of contention. The Rockets are acquiring young player, seeking to shed the contacts of veterans, looking mostly for young player development. The problem with this is, young players tend to be worse than experienced players. Often, much worse.
It’s useful to compare a rookie or young player with his peers, but being the best rookie is kind of like being the best cricket player in Iceland. Nice to be sure, but what’s that get you? Nothing much, because the peer group just isn’t that good.
The key isn’t the rookie season, it’s later seasons. Rookie performance is somewhat less predictive than you might imagine for future success. Sometimes a player is like Luka Doncic, starts off great, and then gets better (But how much better? Is growth an absolutely linear thing with an age cap, or are there sort of “major growth years” and they might come at 17 in some cases, or at 21 in others, based on training and competitive environment?) Sometimes a player is like Tyreke Evans, who starts off great and then gets generally worse.
Two is to have plans to be a good team, and then suffer major injuries to star players, or some other catastrophe like a player refusing to show up for work, or not take simple health precautions. Perhaps a team lost a major player for other reasons - free agency, or trade demands. This is sad, and frustrating, if you’re a fan, but that’s really all. The plan may well have been sound, the team construction reasonable and fortune intervened to spoil the season.
Three is where the Sacramento Kings and their long-suffering fans have been for, well, a really, really, long time. Not a long time in NBA punditry terms, a long time in “this is your life” terms. The team would like to be good. It isn’t. The plan isn’t working, the players, they’re often individually good considered individually, don’t work well together as a team. The coaching isn’t right. The front office is a problem rather than a support system. Draft picks are made when there were clear choices that seemed better at the time.
It’s hard to be in spot number three. Pour one out for Kings fans, who got finally rid of the goofy, incompetent Maloof Siblings, only to replace them with goofy, incompetent Vivek Ranadive.
Sometimes failure starts at the top.
In good news, Alperen Sengun, The Turkish Hammer, returns to save us all, like superman.
This poll is closed
Being Bad Number One
Being Bad Number Three
Dallas - a special kind of bad all its own.