Originally Published: Mar 8, 2010 10:46 PM CDT
Just how high could the Thunders season rank in terms of the NBAs all time biggest turnarounds from one season to the next? Currently the team stands at 38-24. Thats a +15 games over last seasons 23-59 final mark.
The Thunder have 20 games left to play. If you look at the remaining games reasonably, they would be favored in 13 of those and an underdog in 7. If they CAN win 13 of those final 20, the Thunder will finish 51-31. Thats +28 games from last season. So where would that rank historically?
69-70 Bucks +29 games. They added a fella named Lew Alcindor who would change his name to Jabbar and become the NBAs all-time leading scorer.
79-80 Celtics +32 games. Larry Bird flew from Terra Haute, Indiana to Boston and revitalized a franchise. The Celtics would lose in the Eastern Conference Finals to Dr. J and the 76ers
89-90 Spurs +35 games. David Robinson joined the team after serving his two-year commitment to the Navy and won Rookie of the Year honors.
96-97 Spurs +36 games. Robinson played in only 6 games during the previous season due to injury. They landed the top pick in the draft and took Tim Duncan. The Admiral returned to team with Timmy and the Spurs had the greatest turnaround in league history..until.
07-08 Celtics +42 games. The Celtics expected to land the first or second pick in the 2007 draft (and potentially Kevin Durant or Greg Oden), but wound up 5th. The Cs drafted Jeff Green but traded him, along with Wally Szczerbiak and Delonte West to theyesSeattle Supersonics for Ray Allen and the rights to Glen Davis. Kevin Garnett joined Allen and Paul Pierce in Boston and they won a title. Jeff Green went with Kevin Durant to Seattle and on to OKC.
In every case above, the team with the turnaround added at least one future hall of famer to its roster. Which Thunder addition for 2009-2010 will be that guy? James Harden, Serge Ibaka, Byron Mullens???