While the NBA hiatus is brutal for everybody involved, some teams are hurt more than others by this suspension and possible cancellation of the season. Teams such as the Los Angeles Lakers, Milwaukee Bucks, and Los Angeles Clippers would surely have been fighting to the end for the championship, but others never had a shot. Other teams were not hitting on all cylinders due to injuries or inconsistencies.
Here are three teams hurt the least by the suspension of the NBA.
The Sixers were struggling with injuries and finding an identity. Before the shutdown, the Sixers were 39-26, which was good for sixth in the Eastern Conference. For a team that entered the season with their sights set on the NBA championship, this was disappointing.
Elton Brand oversaw a facelift of the team during the offseason with Jimmy Butler and JJ Redick leaving and Al Horford and Josh Richardson coming in, but the Sixers never fully got their feet under them. With injuries to Joel Embiid and then Ben Simmons, Philly found itself treading water instead of leading the pack.
Although making the playoffs was a sure thing, the Sixers were looking like a potential first-round out, so this time off could do this team more good than harm. Not being able to practice and build more chemistry is the only drawback.
The NBA trade deadline offered intrigue as Simmons, Embiid, and Horford were mentioned in possible trades. While nobody was dealt and instead the Sixers made some small additions, it proved that Brand was going all in on this roster. This hiatus might actually bring about some silver linings for this Philly team.
If there was ever an NBA team that needed a break in their season, the New York Knicks were it. With issues surrounding owner James Dolan, the Knicks have been a mess for a while, but things have been especially bad recently. Last offseason was a disaster as the Knicks struck out on the big-name free agents and walked away with second-tier talent.
This season progressed and things continued going downhill. The Knicks fired head coach David Fizdale after a brutal start and now they sit at 21-45. There was the whole Spike Lee fiasco and fans imploring Dolan to sell the team.
This should be a time where the new front office led by Leon Rose should be communicating either by phone or Zoom on how to possibly fix what is extremely broken. There are no off-the-court issues to concern themselves about and no losing streaks or player demands. Instead, there's just brainstorming.
Now is the time for the Knicks to think about their future. No playoffs are in sight so it's all about the offseason for them as they try to pull themselves out of the abyss.
Talk about a team in need of a mulligan. Their season was over the moment Stephen Curry injured his hand. Even with Draymond Green and D'Angelo Russell on the floor, the Warriors continued to fall in the Western Conference.
Before the suspension hit, The Warriors were 15-50, the worst record in the NBA. There was no way they could salvage a season in which just everything went wrong. They're now looking forward to the NBA Draft Lottery and NBA Draft.
With time on their hands, the Warriors' front office is planning for the future. Do they trade Green this offseason, or do they keep him around with the Curry, Thompson, and Andrew Wiggins core? What about obtaining a true big man in either the NBA Draft or through free agency? What will they do with the No. 1 pick if they get it?
These are all questions the Warriors are asking right now during this NBA hiatus, which has no end in sight.