This is something I was asking on twitter last night, and I wanted to bring it to the site.
As a fan, would you have rather had the season the Suns had, or the season the Celtics are about to finish off?
Before we get to the poll, lets break down each team's season.
The Suns were finally eliminated from the playoffs last night, losing to the Grizzlies at home in Game #81 of the season. After being pegged for 25 wins (third lowest in the NBA) by Vegas in the pre-season, Phoenix sits at 47-34, having hung in the playoff race longer than anyone on Earth could have expected. Not only that, but they were a likable bunch of cast-offs and role players, plus two young, talented guards in Eric Bledsoe and Goran Dragic who both made the leap this season.
During this unexpected run, the Suns provided a ton of fun moments to their fans, knocking off: San Antonio, Oklahoma City (2x), the Clippers, Indiana, Houston, Portland (3x), Golden State (2x), Dallas, Toronto (2x), Washington, Charlotte (2x), and Atlanta (2x). 19 wins against teams headed towards the playoffs, many of which were classics against the big boys out West.
They battled their asses off, and were one of the most entertaining teams of the league, averaging 105.2 points per game (5th in the NBA).
But they fell short of the playoffs, and now, they sit in the #14 spot in the draft lottery. Barring a miracle (Phoenix has a 1.8% chance to land in the top-three), the Suns will pick 14th on draft night. Right in the dreaded "not quite good enough to be in the playoffs, not nearly bad enough to get a great draft pick" zone.
On the other hand, the Celtics were really bad this season (just in case you hadn't noticed). They were projected for 29.5 wins by Vegas, and will finish with either 25 or 26. They started off pretty well, sitting at 12-14 in mid-December before collapsing, finishing the season 13-42 (with one game to go). For Celtics fans it has been a harsh fall from grace after the KG/Pierce era, with most of the season being spent: debating the merits of tanking vs not-tanking, rooting against the team, being devastated when the team won, calculating lottery odds, watching the top college guys, and generally being sad. Not that this was unexpected, most of us had the Celts pegged for 20-30 wins, and it looks like they'll finish right in between. But that doesn't mean it has been easy.
But it's going to pay off, at least to a certain degree. If Boston finishes alone in fifth in the lottery standings (their most likely outcome), they will have an 8.8% chance to pick #1, a 29.2% chance to pick top-three, a 55.2% chance to pick top-five, and a 99.6% chance to pick in the top-seven.
Not the best place to be lottery-wise, but infinitely better than having a 98.2% chance at picking 14th like Phoenix.
So which would you rather? The great memories, no playoffs and a worse pick? Or the crappy season and the much better pick?
I know it's a tough question, especially after the fact. But what matters more to you as a fan: having fun, or building a winner? Or is the 14th pick good enough for you when you add in the memories created during an unexpected run to 47-48 wins?
Lets take it to a poll:
Note: Don't take the team's players/assets/other draft picks into account when voting. This isn't a "who's future is brighter?" as much as a "what season would you prefer?". It's strictly the Suns season and their actual pick vs the Celtics season and their actual pick.
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For more of my articles, click here Michael Dyer 4/15/2014 05:23:00 PM Tweet