Historically awful. I mean they stink out loud.
We all know about the record 25 consecutive losses, a streak that is still in effect and could grow indefinitely, like a blackhole of sucktitude absorbing all the hope that comes near it. Not even positive intentions can escape its negativity well.
What I just found out is that, while they have little chance of going down as the worst team ever, they can come pretty dagblasted close. The two worst teams in the shot clock era have been the 1993 Dallas Mavericks and the 1973 Philadelphia 76ers. How am I rating this unbelievable putridity? I’m glad you asked. There are three measures I’m evaluating:
1. Win-Loss record (pretty obvious)
2. Margin of Victory (or in this case defeat)
3. Simple Rating System (a not too sophisticated way of incorporating those two things along with strength of schedule).
So how do our three craptastic contestants measure up? Take a gander
Win-Loss 11-71; MoV -15.2; SRS -14.7
Win-Loss 9-73; MoV -12.1; SRS -11.7
2011 Cavs (in progress)
Win-Loss 8-44; MoV -11.3; SRS -10.5
So clearly our Cleveland Witnesses don’t project to finish as poorly as these two worsts of all time. A better model for how bad things are likely to get is the 2000 LA Clippers.
Win-Loss 15-67; MoV – 11.5; SRS -10.7
Of course that’s assuming that the losing these Cavs have experienced has been uniform over the first half of the season, and it really hasn’t. In addition to losing 25 straight games, they’ve also lost 35 of their last 36 after starting the season basically a .500 team (they were 7-9 before this abysmal stretch). Injuries have played a part, as have better teams getting their act together as the season progresses – the Cavs certainly had no business defeating the Celtics we’ve seen the last two months as they did in their home opener.
I’d like to offer Cavs fans some comfort in their hour of need, but really all I can tell you is, from 1999 until 2004 I had to watch VHS if I wanted to see a good Bulls game. You’ve got better options than that, and I suggest you use them frequently.