Under-Achieving Player of the Year
- Hedo Turkoglu (Raptors)12.4 ppg, but 16.8 ppg last season.
- Richard Jefferson (Spurs) 12.3 ppg, but 19.6 ppg last season with the Milwaukee Bucks. And he scored 22.6 ppg in ’07-’08 for the New Jersey Nets.
WINNER: Both players were touted as crucial additions, supposedly making both worthy playoff teams. Although when we talk about the Spurs, the expectations were that maybe the can pull out one more championship run. Due to Jefferson picking his scoring average up over the last few weeks and the Turkoglu’s Toronto Raptors missing the playoffs, the award goes to HEDO TURKOGLU.
- Saturday, March 6th, the New York Knicks lost 113-93 to the NJ Nets while going 0/18 from 3-point range
- The Los Angeles Lakers’ 91-75 loss to the Thunder, the Lakers lowest scoring output in years. Date?
- January 24th, the Knicks lost 128-78 to the Dallas Mavericks, who were without Jason Kidd.
WINNER: Yes, the Laker loss was bad and losing by 50 was horrific and historic, but I’m going to go with the other play by THE NEW YORK KNICKS. How can any team go 0/18 from the three-point line? How can any team lose by 20 to the 09-‘10 New Jersey Nets, a team with one of the worst records of all-time?
Golden State Warriors
New Jersey Nets
The NEW JERSEY NETS, who were on their way to possibly tying the 1972-1973 76ers all-time worst record of 9-73. Yet, the 76ers still hold that record as the ’09-‘10 Nets finished 12-70.
There really are not any great highlights of how bad the New Jersey Nets were in 2009-2010 (yet), but here’s a glimpse of their apathy in a Sports Center’s Not Top Ten:
Under-Achieving Team of the Year
- Washington Wizards—at the beginning of the season, the additions of Randy Foye and Mike Miller had people talking about a run to the playoffs (some even predicted a deep-run).
- Los Angeles Clippers—this team under-achieved in the ’09 season, just like last season. Just like each season since they got to the second-round of the playoffs in ‘05-’06. Baron Davis vowed that the team would improve, but the season was devastated in some part by three factors: the season-ending injury to rookie Blake Griffin, the trade of Marcus Camby, and the eventual firing of Coach and General Manager Mike Dunleavy.
- The Philadelphia 76ers—although this team has been a competitive playoff team for the last two seasons, they were absolutely horrible this season. Last season, the 76ers took two games from the Eastern Conference Champion Orlando Magic in the first round.
- The Toronto Raptors, who were decent last season, were supposed to be better with the addition of Hedo Turkoglu. Despite taking a while to get it going, the Raptors made a run for the last playoff spot this season.
WINNER: To give full disclosure, personal opinion weighs heavily here, because before the season I already thought that Washington and the Clippers were going to be big busts. So, those were not big surprises to me. I would almost go with the Raptors because I expected them to make the playoffs, but I have to say the most under-achieving team of the year was the PHILADELPHIA 76ERS. For the last two seasons, the 76ers were a forty-win team that made the playoffs. Last season, they took 2 playoff games from the Eastern Conference Champion Orlando Magic. A healthy Elton Brand (76 games) and the “ghost” of Allen Iverson were not enough to keep this team from seriously free-falling. This season they only won 27 games, and they missed the playoffs by a wide margin.
Worst Off-Court Performance
- Javaris Crittenton—allegedly brought a gun to the team locker room after being threatened by Gilbert “Doc Holiday” Arenas.
- Allen Iverson—lasted only three games with the Memphis Grizzlies before returning to the Philadelphia 76’ers only to play __ games. His daughter has been seriously ill, which has caused him to miss a lot of time. Before the conclusion of the 76er’s season, Iverson was released by the team.
- Gilbert Arenas—over a dispute related to a gambling debt Arenas allegedly owed to Crittenton, Arenas brought several guns into the team locker room. He then asked Crittenton to choose one for Arenas to shoot him in the knee caps with.
- Shaquille O’Neil—who is rumored to have had an on-going affair with Gilbert Arenas’ now ex-fiance.
GILBERT ARENAS, who is suspended for the season and may or may not play for the Washington Wizards, again.
Gilbert Arenas gun incident:
Also, if you have not already read Karl Malone’s piece on the Gilbert Arenas’ incident, it is probably the best piece of writing on the subject that I’ve read all year. Enjoy:
To be continued next week with the R.S.D.’s for the Best of the season…
 The 2005-2006 Los Angeles Clippers recorded the most wins ever in Los Angeles with 47. In fact, it is only second to the Buffalo Clippers team record of 49 wins.
R.S. De France is a College and University instructor of English Composition. He has a B.A. in English and an M.A. in Rhetoric, Composition, and Writing. One of his life-long pursuits has been writing and covering anything related to sports, specifically the NBA. Recently, De France, his wife, and another colleague started an internationally read magazine at Shwibly.com.