Earlier this month, Sports Illustrated named an entire NBA franchise—the Golden State Warriors— its Sportsperson of the Year. “It was impossible to overlook the influence that the Warriors, as a collective group, have had on their sport and the broader culture over the last half-decade,” Chris Stone, SI’s editor in chief, said in the announcement.
The Warriors have won three of the last four NBA titles and appear to be well on their way to being champions again (sorry, Raptors fans). Though Kevin Durant joined the Dubs late—transforming them from loveable upstarts to despised villains—owners Joe Lacob and Peter Guber and general manager Bob Myers built their team the right way. They drafted well. They found the perfect coach. They structured their players’ contracts judiciously. They built a positive culture.
The Warriors have become the epitome of a functional sports franchise, with the business world looking to the team as an example of the right way to run an organization. A number of NBA teams, however, provide a stark contrast.
The Kings haven’t made the playoffs since 2006, the Suns since 2010. James Dolan’s Knicks have only made it beyond the first round once since 2000. Why does it feel like the Magic have had a top-five pick in every draft since 1940? Fans of these teams, and others, have been subject to misery because of their incompetence.
Below, we present the five most dysfunctional NBA franchises.
Just missed the cut: Chicago Bulls, Minnesota Timberwolves, Washington Wizards