The 2020-21 NBA season has been guided by storylines coming from the biggest franchises in the league. The construction of a super team - the Brooklyn Nets - and the health of the LA Lakers superstars have been the main topics of discussion in the NBA so far.
Underachieving teams in the NBA 2020-21 season
However, in this report, we will be looking at teams that have struggled in the 2020-21 NBA season.
A difficult season was inevitable for some teams in the NBA. However, some other well-constructed squads have simply been massive disappointments in the current season.
#5 Minnesota Timberwolves
From a statistical point of view, the Minnesota Timberwolves are the worst team in the NBA, with a 12-38 record.
The team's 2020-21 campaign has been bad from the start, as they had to deal with Karl-Anthony Towns' wrist injury which sidelined him for seven games. He then contracted Covid-19 and missed 13 games.
Towns still managed to play 30 games this season, and the Timberwolves have an 8-22 record with him on the court. Without Towns, they have a 4-16 record.
The team, which has two All-Stars in KAT and D'Angelo Russell on the roster, has had two coaches this season.
The Minnesota Timberwolves started the season with Ryan Saunders, who went 7-24, and then switched to Chris Finch, who has a 5-14 record so far.
#4 Toronto Raptors
The Toronto Raptors were a solid team last season and were one win away from playing in the Eastern Conference Finals. In the 2020-21 NBA season, the team lost veteran big men Serge Ibaka and Marc Gasol and were unable to replace them.
Nick Nurse's Toronto Raptors are currently 19-30 and sit 11th in the Eastern Conference. The team started the season terribly, with a 2-8 record. However, they showed improvement from January 14th and February 21st, as they went 14-7.
Unfortunately, the Toronto Raptors are 3-15 since February 23rd. Although the team is just 1.5 games away from a play-in position, offloading Norman Powell to the Portland Trail Blazers in the Trade Deadline is not a good sign for their postseason hopes.
#3 Boston Celtics
The 2020-21 Boston Celtics currently have a 25-25 record. Coming off the Eastern Finals last year, Brad Stevens' team is now fighting for a spot to play in the NBA Playoffs after an inconsistent display.
The Celtics have two All-Stars in the current season, Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown. The two players are averaging over 24 points per game, but the team ranks only 12th in Offensive Rating in the league.
Moreover, the Boston Celtics' defense is 20th in the league, after allowing 112.5 points per 100 possessions, and are currently the eighth seed in the East.
#2 New Orleans Pelicans
The New Orleans Pelicans have a highly talented offensive squad, guided by young and exciting players. The team is led by Stan Van Gundy, but they have not shown the coach's trademark solid defense and have largely been a disappointment in the 2020-21 campaign.
The Pelicans have a 22-27 record right now and are just 0.5 behind the Golden State Warriors for the last spot among the play-in positions. The team's offense, guided by Zion Williamson, Brandon Ingram and Lonzo Ball, ranks eighth in the NBA with 115.7 points scored per 100 possessions.
However, the defense is not adequate, and the team ranks 28th in the entire NBA in Defensive Rating.
#1 Washington Wizards
The Washington Wizards' 2020-21 roster is headlined by the NBA's current scoring leader, Bradley Beal, and a player who is averaging a triple-double for the fourth season of his career, Russell Westbrook.
Despite having two tremendous talents in Beal and Westbrook, the Washington Wizards are currently 12th in the Eastern Conference with a 17-31 record for the entire year.
Even though they have had some strong wins over big teams, such as the Brooklyn Nets, the Washington Wizards are an inconsistent team and are arguably the most underperforming side in the league.
They have seven losses in their last 10 games and are on a three-game losing streak.