After a 2013 offseason that saw various teams in the East improve their rosters tremendously not many NBA fans expected to see the conference be as bad as it was in the 2012-13 season. Fans have seen the exact opposite as the Eastern Conference has reached a new low point.
At this very moment only the top three teams have winning records. In comparison, the West overpowers the East due to its more consistent teams as well as all of the top eight seeds having winning records.
Throughout the first 25 games of the 2013-14 season we have come to realize that literally anything is possible in the Eastern Conference this season. Various teams we never would have suspected to make the playoffs may just have that chance this year.
Teams who were counted out in the preseason are showing the possibility of being a playoff team while taking advantage of just how bad the East has become. The Boston Celtics, Toronto Raptors, and most importantly the Charlotte Bobcats have all become part of this discussion due to people giving them little to no chance of being a winning team this season.
No, most of these teams won’t have winning records come June, but will they have a shot at being part of the top eight? Heck yes!
With teams like the New York Knicks (I feel the Brooklyn Nets will rebound and be back in the mix soon) and the Chicago Bulls showing signs of unsolvable problems with both their offense and defense (injury problems as well as team chemistry issues) this opens up spots in the conference for teams to take. One of those teams that will most definitely steal a spot in the 2014 NBA playoffs is the Bobcats.
Are they a 7-59 team anymore? No, but it seems the lasting effect of that miserable season still remains on the minds of many. Often fans will just assume the Cats are a “horrible” team even if they are performing at a great level! In greater simplicity what I am really trying to get at here is people don’t take Charlotte serious enough.
With only one playoff appearance in the team’s existence I understand why people feel it is a failing franchise, but past failure doesn’t mean they can’t have success this season. This team truly resembles a more efficient, consistent, and improving Bobcats team. Consistent and efficient isn’t something we’ve been able to associate with Charlotte for a long time!
After a buzzer beating game winner by Kemba Walker in overtime the Bobcats took down the Raptors and solidified their spot as the sixth team in the East (12-14 record). The No. 6 seed this far into the season (31 percent through the season so far) means we could be seeing something different from Charlotte.
The losing record truly doesn’t matter in the East because by playoff team expects to see at least five of the top eight seeds with losing records. Just a game back from the No. 5 spot right now the excuse for fans whose teams are struggling is getting a little overused. “Its still early in the season, give teams like the Knicks, Nets, and Bulls time.” You want to know why that quote ticks me off?
We are almost a third done with the season and people are still making the excuse it’s “early.” When will saying it’s early ever die down on those sore loser fans? While big market teams in the East continue to struggle the Bobcats are taking advantage of the lacking Eastern Conference with their consistent starters and bench performances from game to game.
Don’t believe me? I say it now and I mean it. You will see the Cats in the 2014 NBA playoffs. Bet on it; it goes to show you should never count out an underdog. Charlotte is rising and proving all of those doubters that the Bobcats aren’t still an “automatically” horrible team according to most.