The 2011-12 Charlotte Bobcats: Worse Than The 1972-73 Sixers?

Ladies and Gentlemen, we just witnessed history. The 2011-12 Charlotte Bobcats are now officially the worst team in NBA history.

Get ready Bobcat fans, the season you want to forget has now become the hottest topic at sports bars around the country and the answer to all those “worst team ever” trivia questions.  Almost every season from now on, a slow start to the year will lead to the question: “are they as bad as the 2011-12 Bobcats?”

By losing 104-84 on Thursday to the New York Knicks, the Bobcats sealed their fate as having the worst winning percentage in NBA history (.106), dethroning the 1972-73 Philadelphia 76ers (.110 winning percentage) as the biggest laughing stock in NBA history.

For this reason, I understand why owner Michael Jordan would not even watch them play.

As an outsider though, I loved watching the Bobcats. Even highlights of the games they won could go straight to a blooper reel.

Unfortunately, the shortened season will be the reason many people won’t recognize this team as the genuine worst. Who knows how many more games they would have won (or lost) if they got to play a full 82?

NFL fans somewhat recently debated a similar situation as 1976 Buccaneers went 0-14, BUT didn’t play the current 16 game schedule. The 2008 Lions ended that debate by going 0-16 and finally showing the world you can’t win by just drafting wide receivers.

Well I’m here to assure you the Bobcats are right up down there and probably would have still be the worst given those extra 16 games.

After 66 games, both the ‘72-73 76ers (I apologize for all the 7’s. It must have been a pain writing about this team in the 70’s) and the Bobcats were 7-59. The Sixers (that’s better) finished the year 2-14 in their final 16 games. The Bobcats would have had a shot, but, if the previous 66 games were any indication, would very possibly not have won two more times.

Maybe you’re sick and tired of hearing about winning percentages and possible wins, as I am right about now. So let’s look at the team itself.

The Bobcats’ biggest problem this year was scoring. They finished the season with an NBA-worst 87 points per game. The bad 76ers team averaged over 104 points a game (in an admittedly different era). The 76ers defense was pretty bad, but the Bobcats’ 27-out-of-30 ranked D is also nothing to write home about.

This year’s Bobcat team had four players average double digits in points and none averaged over 15.1 a game. The 76ers team had 10 players average double digit points and three had more than 17 a game. Again, it was a different era, but at least the 76ers could put up points to keep them in games. The Bobcats have not finished a game within four point of a team since March.

Maybe you didn’t catch that. The Bobcats have not lost a game by less than five points since March.

Let’s face it, when your two leading scorers are Gerald Henderson and Corey Maggette, this season’s futility couldn’t have been much of a surprise.

Bobcats fans should be happy the nightmare is over and the NBA won’t let them play any more games this year. I, on the other hand, wanted it to keep going. We can now only imagine what else this team could have accomplished.

The Bobcats ended the season on a franchise worst 23-game losing streak, also longer than the 20 game streak the 76ers team had.  If the season had kept going, the Bobcats would have certainly challenged the 2010-11 Cleveland Cavilers for the NBA all-time worst 26 game losing streak and maybe would have even made it to 30!

Oh well. I guess there’s always next year.

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  • Brian Lee

    God bless the Bobcats…but who knows, we can only play the “what if” game saying that they could be worse off or better off with an actual full season.

    I think I would put an asterisk for the 11-12 Bobcats Winning Percentage… haha