The 7-59 mark and .110 winning percentage is the lowest in NBA history. Let's give this some time to digest. No NBA team has ever been worse than these Bobcats. And no NBA team has ever been as good as the Bobcats have been bad. Charlotte's coach, Paul Silas, is a respected man. He's won some games in the Association, and he had this team playing hard, or at least as hard as they were able to, in the last 10 games.
This really should not have been the year to set a new low winning percentage record; the sprint season meant there were any number of games where Charlotte had an edge in rest against a back-to-back opponent. That factor made the rest of the league all sag to the middle; even the woebegone Wizards managed 20 wins this year. So why were these Bobcats the worst team ever? Well, it's not just the talent, though that cupboard was pretty bare; the top players here are lucky to be drawing a paycheck, and the bench guys soon won't be.
And there is, of course, only one man that brought that talent in. Michael Jordan. You know, the guy that made Kwame Brown a #1 pick. The guy that so loves undersized shoot-all-the-time guards that he has to double up on him. The guy that, for all of his fabled competitiveness, couldn't keep Boris Diaw from blimping up and losing any interest in going inside for anything. The guy that is more likely to be seen at a game in Chicago than here.
Oh, and the guy who burned more bridges with players than any other owner in the lockout, ensuring that his Bobcats were never going to get the kind of snooze button game that they needed to just be bad, rather than historically so.
When you look back at this Bobcat year, the amazing part isn't the 59 losses: it's the seven wins. Opening night against Milwaukee, when Diaw actually seemed to care; three days later, they nearly beat the Heat. (No, seriously.) Game six, when they won in New York to right the ship to 2-4. Game 13, when Golden State became the only Western team, besides the Bobcats, to not have a winning record in Charlotte this year. Game 30, where they shook off the 16-game losing streak to win on the road in Toronto. Game 36, when they contributed to the Dwight Howard Farewell Tour with a 16-point (!) home win. Game 40, when they beat the Bugs in New Orleans, 73-71, in what might be the worst game ever played in the Association. Game 43, when they handled the Raptors yet again. And that, well, was that.
Some will say that the Hornets are right to have tanked more than any other team has tanked; that only by getting this bad can they ever hope to be good again. This is, of course, bullsquat: every high pick will be blown by Jordan, no free agent of note will come to the home of the lockout king, and going to a market where the pro team will also be fifth fiddle to numerous ACC teams does not help matters. It's a market that probably shouldn't have a franchise, and a GM that should never be left near a phone.
So, put this squarely where it belongs: not on Silas, DJ Augustin, Kemba Walker, Gerald Henderson, Bismarck Biyombo or any of the other handful of cursed men who will, now and forever, be attached to this record. But nowhere near as much as his boss.
Eat it, MJ. Eat it up nice.