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5 NBA Teams Destined to Decline in 2014-15

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5 NBA Teams Destined to Decline in 2014-15

Houston Rockets v Golden State Warriors
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Every NBA season has surprise teams, those that are better than people expected and those that are much worse. That is what makes the league so interesting and fun to watch. These five teams were all playoff teams a year ago and will either be squarely on the bubble or miss the playoffs altogether this season.

5. Brooklyn Nets

Brooklyn Nets v Miami Heat - Game Five
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5. Brooklyn Nets

Brooklyn Nets v Miami Heat - Game Five
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The Nets will miss the playoffs this season but not because the loss of Jason Kidd will be too much to overcome. His loss will actually be addition by subtraction in the long run. The Nets had one of the worst offseasons of any NBA team, losing Paul Pierce and not doing anything to get better. They will be one year older and didn’t tangibly improve at any position. With the East steadily improving, they will be on the outside looking in.

4. Memphis Grizzlies

Oklahoma City Thunder v Memphis Grizzlies - Game Six
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4. Memphis Grizzlies

Oklahoma City Thunder v Memphis Grizzlies - Game Six
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The Grizzlies are the second oldest team in the league, and that isn’t a good thing. They signed the ageless, yet aging, wonder in Vince Carter, but I don’t think he fits into their offense the same way he did in Dallas and will struggle. The West is a virtual gauntlet, with several teams, including the Nuggets and Suns, pushing hard for a playoff spot, and I think the Grizzlies will be one of the teams that suffers as a result.

3. Houston Rockets

Houston Rockets v Portland Trail Blazers Game Six
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3. Houston Rockets

Houston Rockets v Portland Trail Blazers Game Six
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The Rockets had a terrible, terrible offseason. They chased all the pretty girls in school but were turned down by every single one. Parsons took off for the Mavericks, and despite Harden’s attempt to minimize his contribution, they will see how important he really was. This team will be five to seven games worse and on the bubble for a playoff spot.

2. Atlanta Hawks

Chicago Bulls v Atlanta Hawks
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2. Atlanta Hawks

Chicago Bulls v Atlanta Hawks
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The Hawks appeared to be destined for a high lottery pick last season before they went on an improbable run that landed them with the No. 8 seed in the playoffs. All of this was without their best player in Al Horford. That said, New York and Cleveland will both be playoff teams this year, and somebody will have to miss the playoffs that made it last season. I don’t think the Hawks are a very good team overall and we will see that play out.

1. Indiana Pacers

Indiana Pacers vs Miami Heat
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1. Indiana Pacers

Indiana Pacers vs Miami Heat
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This one is sad. I already thought they would be on the decline when they let Lance Stephenson go, but with the season-long loss of Paul George, this team is destined for a monumental fall from grace. They could still push for a low seed playoff berth, depending on who they pick up to replace George’s productivity, but there is no scenario where they are competing for the top seed.

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