By Cody Williams @TheSizzle20 on March 9, 2014
The 2014 NBA Playoffs will get underway in just about a month and a half and there is still much to be decided throughout the league. While the top of the Eastern Conference is pretty much set, the bottom half of the conference is still jostling for position and trying to maintain a hold on their spot for the playoffs. Which 10 teams would be better off for the future if they ended up on the outside looking in, whether intentional or not?
The Philadelphia 76ers are a part of one of the most blatant tanking efforts in recent memory, so it figures that they would need to miss the playoffs (they’re going to, easily) to make their plan go over swimmingly. Something good has to come of the awful basketball they’ve been playing, especially of late, doesn’t it?
It’s a bit depressing to think that the Milwaukee Bucks considered themselves a possible playoff team coming into the year. Now they sit with a bleak outlook considering their personnel and the money they have committed beyond this year as the worst team in the league this season. They could definitely use a franchise-changing talent in Brew-town.
The Utah Jazz were looking to develop young players this season and have done so, but they haven’t yielded many wins as a result. Moreover, the Jazz still haven’t found a clear cornerstone to build their team around. Missing the postseason and getting a lottery pick is a solid way to try and make that happen.
With the new ownership group in place for the Sacramento Kings, this season has been somewhat of a transition period for the organization. The team has been undergoing a changing of the guard on their roster and the front office, which would make another lottery pick a fitting piece to add this summer as the miss the postseason once again.
The biggest issue for the Denver Nuggets right now is the fact that they have personnel on their roster suited to fit the old front office and old head coach. They seem poised to miss the playoffs as is, which will be beneficial for them as they can start drafting and building a team that will be better suited to play under Brian Shaw.
The Orlando Magic have made a living out of acquiring young assets the past couple of years, but they are still lacking that one guy that could be a superstar. In another losing season this year, the Magic will have the opportunity to grab that guy in the lottery, which is really all that they could ask for to possible get their young team to turn a corner.
The Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett trade made it quite clear that the Boston Celtics were beginning sort of a rebuild with this team. After they’ve floundered around this season in sub-mediocrity, missing the playoffs and picking in the lottery will be a benefit to the franchise moving forward.
The Dallas Mavericks are the only team currently in the playoff picture to make this list, but I think that they could be one of the team’s that would benefit the most from missing the postseason and getting into the lottery. The core of their team is aging and they don’t exactly have a plethora of young assets. Falling out of the eight-seed and into the lottery might do them good for the future, even if it does mortgage another year for Dirk Now
Kyrie Irving may well be the savior of the Cleveland Cavaliers, but he could use some help. The Cavs aren’t yet eliminated in the East, but they might as well be. The Cavs need players to build around Irving with and doing that with lottery picks would be a luxury. Yes, this team needs to get out of the lottery for once at some point, but I’m not sure this is the team you want to do that with.
The Memphis Grizzlies are nipping at the heels of the eight-seed in the West, but I’m not sure another playoff run is best for this team’s future. With an aging Zach Randolph, Tony Allen and Tayshaun Prince, this team is desperate for an infusion of youth that a late-lottery pick would provide. Particularly if they can add some more offense, missing the postseason wouldn’t be bad for Memphis at all.
June 2, 2015 by Casey Sherman
Here are five intriguing storylines to keep track of heading into free agency for the Toronto Raptors. Read More
June 2, 2015 by Evan Massey
Phil Jackson and the New York Knicks need to make some big moves this offseason, and acquiring Lance Stephenson should be considered by them. Read More
June 2, 2015 by Shane Phillips
There will be plenty of fish in the sea for the Miami Heat this summer, but here are five free agents the team cannot afford to ignore. Read More
June 2, 2015 by Derek McVay
Here are five of the biggest offseason rumors surrounding the Boston Celtics. Read More
With defensive attention likely directed elsewhere and a hobbled Kyrie Irving in the backcourt, this series is Iman Shumpert's time to shine for the Cleveland Cavaliers. Read More
June 2, 2015 by Nick Sciria
David Lee's unselfish acceptance of a bench role this season has fueled the Golden State Warriors' run to the NBA Finals. Read More
Matthew Dellavedova has played a key role in the Cleveland Cavaliers' defensive rise, but his offense will be vital in the 2015 NBA Finals. Read More
The Indiana Pacers hold the No. 11 pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, and they would be wise to target point guard Jerian Grant with that selection. Read More